Disneyland’s measles outbreak killed more than 100

Or so said PBS’s Gwen Ifill yesterday, in its flagship PBS Newshour show.PBS 100 measles deaths

“State lawmakers in California moved today to impose one of the nation’s strictest vaccination laws,” she reported. “The state assembly voted to require that nearly all public schoolchildren get their shots, or be homeschooled. The bill gained momentum after a measles outbreak that started at Disneyland and killed more than 100 people.”

Ifill’s figure of 100 is off — by 100. Not a single person died as a result of the Disneyland scare, although she can be forgiven for not knowing any better, given the hype that the mainstream media heaped on the public for weeks on end over a story that had not a single casualty. This non-story became the single-biggest domestic story in the United States.

Ifill, as anyone who follows politics knows, is no newbie who through some accident found herself reading the evening news. She is the PBS NewsHour’s co-anchor and managing editor as well as the moderator and managing editor of “Washington Week.” Yet amazingly, she read those lines from a script without choking, an indication that she has been unquestioningly swallowing the media hype over vaccines as much as any incredulous viewer.

Worse, that script also appears on the PBS NewsHour website, indicating that her staff is as ignorant as she is about the seriousness — or lack thereof — of the Disneyland story.

Our rating

A glaring factual error of this proportion is rare in premier broadcast media. That the error was not corrected many hours after the broadcast is unheard of. Something is seriously amiss at PBS NewsHour (@NewsHour) and with Gwen Ifill (@gwenifill). Six Band-Aids, and a hope that this lapse of professionalism will serve as a wakeup call at one of America’s premier news shows.



  1. Did you email her this posting?


  2. Wow never listen to their news hour and never will. That’s incredible. ..


  3. PBS has made a connection at the website: http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/news-wrap-measles-outbreak-california-lawmakers-vote-strict-vaccination-bill/ Also, one of the comments on that page states, “PBS NewsHour had a statement at the end of its 7 pm program hour tonight that Gwen Ifill made a mistake in her reporting last night. The story is now off of the pages when you call up the website. I would imagine that they are trying to gloss this over as quickly as possible. Earlier today it was in their “Most Discussed” column. Gone now.” Thank you Lawrence Solomon!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. mattie Lewis says:

    I’ve been a peds nurse 45 years,I can only verify 7 cases, goz


  5. Could you share the link to the article please?


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