The media throughout 2020 reported a “scientific consensus” that the pandemic was a result of a zoonotic jump that is unrelated to lab activity without providing information on what questions the scientists it surveyed were asked, how many scientists were surveyed, and whether or not these scientists conducted investigations into the origin of COVID-19. It is clear that journalists have a powerful tool through which they are able to declare a scientific consensus before a matter is rigorously investigated.
Amplifying ignorance and absolutism in order to enforce unproven opinions as unquestionable “facts” is the opposite of how the scientific method functions. Irresponsible reporting and nonfactual declarations of scientific consensus on developing matters endanger public health just like a virus does, by undermining public trust in science. We should learn something from the boys who cried wolf.