During a panel discussion on Fox's Media Buzz about Katie Couric's recent comments on HBO's Real Time with Bill Maher about the need for Trump supporters to be "deprogrammed," Euronews' Ray Suarez got a chance to share a rare dose of reality about the network's culpability in promoting the Big Lie that Couric was criticizing.
Here's what Couric said that had heads exploding on the right:
The former “Today” host told Maher on January 15 of GOP congressmen, “It’s really bizarre, isn’t it, when you think about how AWOL so many of these members of Congress have gotten.
“But I also think some of them are believing the garbage that they are being fed 24/7 on the internet, by their constituents, and they bought into this big lie.
“And the question is, how are we going to really almost deprogram these people who have signed up for the cult of Trump?”
Couric should have mentioned Fox and other right wing media outlets as well, rather than just "the Internet," but thanks to Ray Suarez, Fox was mentioned here.
Kurtz asked for some brief input from each of his guests, and after some rambling nonsense from The Federalist's Ben Domenech about “promoting a culture of unity,” his fellow panel member Jedediah Bila was asked to chime in.
“Deprogram is a bad word,“ Bila opined: “It makes Trump supporters sound like robots or idiots. They're not. They're neither. I think that a large portion of the country does feel though that the election was rigged and stolen, and they feel that way not because they are stupid, but because they trusted Donald Trump. They liked what he did and they believe what he said, and on that issue, he was wrong. He was not telling the truth. So what you do about a lot of people just believing that still, I don't know. But I don't like the use of the word deprogram, and I think a lot people are a lot smarter than that.”
“Well neither do I. Ray, you've 20 seconds” Kurtz replied. Kurtz didn't bother to point out that the circular logic used by Bila has been the refrain we've constantly heard from Republicans and their enablers on their propaganda networks like Fox, but Suarez reminded the viewers where a good deal of that blame lies before Kurtz managed to end the segment.
“Hot takes get clicks and follows. That's the media we are in. Deprogramming is probably a bad idea, but the only reason people believe that is that they were told it for months,” Suarez replied, “including by this network.”
Kurtz, of course, proceeded to immediately ignore this callout, saying, “Some other liberal commentators have also used deprogramming and I just think it's absolutely the wrong word.”
No Howie, it's absolutely the correct word and one that needs to be used about anyone that watches your network to get their "news" as well. Your viewers, just like Trump's supporters are members of a cult, and deprogramming describes exactly what needs to be done. Whether that's humanly possible, and how to go about it is another issue altogether, but the description of what's happened to the right is accurate.