As 2016 comes to a close, it will be remembered as the year of fake news–but not in the way the left would like you to believe.
The left has been wringing their hands over the epidemic of fake news following the election of Donald Trump to the presidency, which is ironic given that they’re the ones responsible for producing fake news.
Here are nine of the worst fake news stories of 2016.
1. The Republican National Committee called Trump a king and compared him to Jesus Christ. As the Daily Wire has reported, the media took a line from the RNC’s Christmas statement that read “this Christmas heralds a time to celebrate the good news of a new King” and reported as if the “new King” was referencing Trump. This couldn’t be further from the truth, as the “new King” is what Christians typically refer to Jesus as on Christmas. It was an egregious example of fake news.
2. Russia hacked the election. One of the excuses the Democrats are giving for Hillary Clinton’s loss is Russia’s involvement in the election, and the media is running with it by publishing stories with headlines about Russia hacking the election. While it’s certainly true that Russia was the likely perpetrator in hacking the Democratic National Committee and Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta’s emails, there’s no evidence that these hacks threw the election to Trump and the notion of election hacking implies that there was hacking of voting machines, of which there is no evidence.
3. Sen. Ted Cruz’s (R-TX) father was involved in killing John F. Kennedy. This baseless allegation surfaced from the tabloid trash National Enquirer, and spread like wildfire when Trump gave credence to the story. It goes without saying that the story was garbage, and to their credit, leftist outlets like the Washington Post and Snopes proved that there was no merit to the allegation, but it was still a fake news story perpetuated by the National Enquirer.
4. Certain countries are taking in Trump refugees. Specifically, Canada and Ireland, and neither story was true, and yet each piece got thousands of shares on Facebook among those on the left.
5. Hate crimes perpetuated by Trump supporters that have turned out to be hoaxes. Since the election, there have been a number of reported instances of Trump supporters committing hate crimes, including a bisexual college student and a black female student getting assaulted. Those have turned out to be false. That hasn’t the stopped the media from crying about a wave of supposed pro-Trump violence that isn’t occurring.
6. YouTube prankster Adam Saleh claiming that he was kicked off a Delta Airlines for flight for speaking Arabic. Saleh made the claim in a video that went viral; the media reported on it without any skepticism whatsoever. This is despite the fact that Saleh is known for pulling off pranks and hoaxes; many passengers on the plane have disputed his story and claimed that Saleh and his friend were being disruptive. There were a couple of leftist media outlets that were skeptical of the story and some that gave updates to the doubts raised by his story, but the fact that most of the mainstream outlets ran with the story without doing the proper research is typical of fake news.
7. The notion that FiveThirtyEight’s Nate Silver was wrong about Trump having a chance and Clinton would be the undisputed winner of the election.
Fake news. https://t.co/Yq9b9JAA91
— Sean Davis (@seanmdav) November 17, 2016
Fake news. pic.twitter.com/aztqVuIoFv
— Sean Davis (@seanmdav) November 17, 2016
8. A Jewish family had to leave a town due to “fake news” from conservative outlets. Some right-of-center news outlets reported on speculation that a Jewish family caused a local school to cancel the performance of “A Christmas Carol” because they objected to the “God bless us, everyone” line. The leftist media then attacked right-of-center sites that reported this, as they claimed that the Jewish family had to flee the town due to outrage from the story. But as it turns out, the Anti-Defamation League looked into this and found that the Jewish family didn’t flee at all–they were simply on vacation.
9. Pizzagate. This conspiracy theory that there was some Democratic pedophile ring being run out of a pizza restaurant has been largely relegated to alt-right news sites and chat rooms, but it reached a point where a man entered the restaurant with a firearm with the intention of rescuing the children–and then surrendered when he learned that there were no children there, since the story was false.