Eddie Mair 4pm - 7pm
Maajid Nawaz berates media's Covid-19 coverage as "absolute cop-out"
26 April 2020, 15:42
Amid news that the UK public trusts politicians more than the national media, Maajid Nawaz took apart the reason why, and offered his advice.
He admitted that he himself allowed a previous guest to get away with the statement and saw the error of his ways. "That is an absolute cop out. During times of crisis we do not rally behind the government."
"That didn't happen during the Iraq war and the 2008 financial crash" he claimed. Maajid pointed out that the main issue in the media's coronavirus coverage is that they are trying to catch the government out rather than entertain a debate.
"We should not be talking about which meetings Dominic Cummings attended, not hatchet jobs about the prime minister not listening to scientists." He then took the opportunity to list out the issues have come out of the coronavirus crisis.
Riding on the back of an argument put forward by Sir Keir Starmer Maajid suggested"we should be looking at what should the exit plan should look like" and another horrific statistic that has come out of the crisis, "the absolutely terrifying rate of a spike in domestic violence".
Maajid was furious that there has been no addressing of the crisis in "poverty and socio-economic factors and how this virus has only magnified these injustices" and also the alleged "overzealous policing of minority groups".
Maajid believed the media distrust is coming from the media ignoring real stories that criticise the action the UK has taken on coronavirus, but also for things that have carried on during the crisis. He asked "what about stories on the 5G Huawei deal" and whether there should be more media attention on how negotiations haven't been delayed or stopped entirely.
He also noted that all countries that have been successful so far in fighting the virus have had different strategies. "They clearly all disagree, why is there not more focus on that" he wondered.
On the topic of the furlough of a substantial amount of the population because of business closures, Maajid pointed out that this opens up a debate on universal basic income and the media should explore this idea.
He insisted that "these are some juicier topics we could be looking at instead of which meetings Dominic Cummings attended."