Reports Said 38% of Americans Won’t Buy Corona Beer Because of the Coronavirus. Here’s Why That’s Not Exactly True
- Major news outlets like CNN and The New York Post reported Thursday that 38% of American beer drinkers would not buy Corona beer right now because of the coronavirus outbreak.
- However, many have criticized the survey that the media outlets cited as misleading.
- While some of the survey questions that the 737 beer drinkers answered explicitly mentioned the coronavirus, that question about Corona beer did not.
- The question implies an association with the coronavirus, but it could also include responses from people who just don’t drink Corona anyway.
Are 38% Percent of Americans Really Scared of Corona Beer?
Media outlets like CNN and The New York Post cited a survey on Thursday that claimed 38% of Americans won’t drink Corona beer because of the coronavirus. Now, others are calling that poll phony.
The poll gained national attention and even trended on Twitter after the company running it, 5W Public Relations, asked 737 beer drinkers a variety of questions. Some of those questions explicitly mentioned the coronavirus outbreak that has infected more than 89,000 people globally as of Monday morning. The question involving Corona beer, however, notably lacked any mention of the coronavirus.
“38% of beer-drinking Americans would not buy Corona under any circumstances now,” the company said in its press release.
“5W Public Relations said that 38% of Americans wouldn’t buy Corona ‘under any circumstances’ because of the outbreak,” CNN then reported.
“A surprising 38 percent of beer drinkers insisted that they would not, under any circumstances, buy Corona as the deadly virus spreads across the globe,” The New York Post also reported.
According to The Atlantic, however, while the question implies an association with the coronavirus, it could also simply include responses from people who just don’t drink Corona anyway.
This is supported by the additional result that only 4% of regular Corona drinkers surveyed in the poll said they would stop drinking the brand.
“It is one thing for unscrupulous PR agencies to get their name out by trying to mislead the public in a shameless manner. It is quite another for some of the country’s most prestigious and well-known media outlets to let themselves be played,” Yascha Mounk said for The Atlantic.
Mounk also said he reached out to 5W Public Relations and was able to obtain the list of questions, but the company has not provided any further results or its methodology with him or other reporters.
“Maybe, just maybe, that’s because the results show that most Americans get the difference between a disease and a beer,” Mounk said.
YouTuber and educational vlogger Hank Green has also questioned the legitimacy of such results, also noting that the company’s currently secret methodology for obtaining its results.
“OK, now that we’ve had our fun imagining that 38% of Americans are fucking idiots…,” he said, “let’s realize that we’re all idiots for believing that CNN would check the source on this before tweeting out clickbait that makes us think less of our neighbors.”
In a statement, Constellation Brands (which owns Corona) CEO Bill Newlands also condemned the poll and association between the similarly-named beer and virus.
“It’s extremely unfortunate that recent misinformation about the impact of this virus on our business has been circulating in traditional and social media without further investigation or validation,” Newlands said. “These claims simply do not reflect our business performance and consumer sentiment, which includes feedback from our distributor and retailer partners across the country. We’ve seen no impact to our people, facilities or operations and our business continues to perform very well.”
The U.S. Reports Its First Two Deaths
Aside from clickbait polls, the coronavirus has continued to spread outside of China. On Monday, the United States reported four additional deaths after reporting its first two over the weekend.
All six people who died lived in Washington state. Reportedly, both people who died over the weekend were elderly adults with underlying health problems.
Some of the victims were also residents at a nursing home in Kirkland, Washington. That nursing home is now the subject of its own outbreak with six confirmed cases coming from the facility. Three of those cases are reportedly elderly residents in critical condition.
Other residents and staff from the facility have also reported feeling sick. With that outbreak, a quarter of Kirkland’s firefighters are in quarantine because they had visited the nursing home.
In all, as of Monday, those infections bring the U.S. to 88 cases, with states like New York, Florida, and Rhode Island all saw their first confirmed cases over the weekend.
Coronavirus Picks Up Speed Internationally
Globally, many countries are facing similar rises in infections.
One of the most drastic spikes occurred in Italy over the weekend. On Saturday, the country had confirmed 1,128 cases. By Sunday, that number jumped to 1,694, a 50% increase in the span of a day.
As of Monday, South Korea is reporting 4,300 cases, which is easily the largest outbreak outside of China. About 60% of those cases stem from the Shincheonji Church of Jesus, a religious group that is frequently denounced as a cult.
China, however, reported its lowest reported infection numbers since January, with only 202 new cases and 42 deaths. Over the course of the past week, China has continually seen decreases in the number of people infected and dying each day.
The numbers were so positive to Chinese officials that they even closed the first of its 16 rapidly-built makeshift hospitals in Wuhan, where the human version of the virus originated.
See what others are saying: (The Atlantic) (USA Today) (The New York Times)
95-Year-Old Woman Dies After Police Tases Her in Nursing Home
The officer involved was suspended with pay and charged with assault.
A 95-year-old Australian woman whom police tasered in a nursing home last week has reportedly died from her injuries.
Clare Nowland, who had dementia and required a walking frame to stand up and move, was living at the Yallambee Lodge in Cooma in southeastern Australia.
At about 4:15 a.m. on May 17, police and paramedics responded to a report of a woman standing outside her room with a steak knife.
They encountered Nowland, then reportedly tried to negotiate with her for several minutes, but she didn’t drop the knife.
The five-foot-two, 95-pound woman walked toward the two officers “at a slow pace,” police said at a news conference, so one of them tasered her.
She fell to the floor and reportedly suffered a fractured skull and a severe brain bleed, causing her to be hospitalized in critical condition.
Nowland passed away in a hospital surrounded by her family, the New South Wales police confirmed in a statement today.
After a week-long investigation, the police force also said that the senior constable involved would appear in court next week to face charges of recklessly causing grievous bodily harm, assault occasioning actual bodily harm, and common assault.
NSW police procedure states that tasers should not be used against elderly or disabled people absent exceptional circumstances.
Following the incident, community members, activists, and disability rights advocates expressed bewilderment and anger at what they called an unnecessary use of force, and some are now questioning why law enforcement took so long to prosecute the officer involved.
See what others are saying: (Reuters) (The New York Times) (CNN)
U.K. Police Face Backlash After Arresting Anti-Monarchy Protesters
London Mayor Sadiq Khan said that some of the arrests “raise questions” and “investigations are ongoing.”
The Public Order Act
A controversial protest crackdown law in the U.K. is facing criticism after dozens of anti-monarchy protesters were arrested during the coronation ceremony in London over the weekend.
The law, dubbed the “Public Order Act” was passed roughly a week ahead of the coronation for King Charles III. It gives police more power to restrict protesters and limits the tactics protesters can use in public spaces. It was condemned by human rights groups upon its passing, and is facing a new round of heat after 52 people were arrested over coronation protests on Saturday.
In a statement, the Metropolitan Police said protesters were arrested for public order offenses, breach of the peace and conspiracy to cause a public nuisance. The group said it gave advance warning that its “tolerance for any disruption, whether through protest or otherwise, will be low and that we would deal robustly with anyone intent on undermining the celebration.”
It is currently unclear how many of those arrested were detained specifically for violating the Public Order Act, however, some of those arrested believe the new law was used against them.
“Make no mistake. There is no longer a right to peaceful protest in the UK,” Graham Smith, the CEO of anti-monarchy group Republic tweeted after getting arrested. “I have been told many times the monarch is there to defend our freedoms. Now our freedoms are under attack in his name.”
An Attempt to “Diminish” Protests
During a BBC Radio interview, Smith also said he believes the dozens of arrests were premeditated.
“There was nothing that we did do that could possibly justify even being detained and arrested and held,” Smith claimed.
“The whole thing was a deliberate attempt to disrupt and diminish our protest.”
Yasmine Ahmed, the U.K. Director of Human Rights Watch, also tweeted that the arrests were “disgraceful.”
“These are scenes you’d expect to see in Russia not the UK,” she wrote.
When asked about the controversy, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak told reporters officers should do “what they think is best” in an apparent show of support for the Metropolitan Police.
For his part, London Mayor Sadiq Khan said he is looking into the matter.
“Some of the arrests made by police as part of the Coronation event raise questions and whilst investigations are ongoing, I’ve sought urgent clarity from Met leaders on the action taken,” Khan tweeted.
See what others are saying: (The Guardian) (CNN) (The Washington Post)
Foreign Nationals Make Mad Dash out of Sudan as Conflict Rages
The conflict’s death toll has surpassed 420, with nearly 4,000 people wounded.
As the 10-day-long power struggle between rival generals tore Sudan apart, foreign governments with citizens in the country scrambled to evacuate them over the weekend.
On Sunday, U.S. special forces landed in the capital Khartoum and carried out nearly 100 American diplomats along with their families and some foreign nationals on helicopters.
An estimated 16,000 Americans, however, remain in the country and U.S. officials said in a statement that a broader evacuation mission would be too dangerous.
Christopher Maier, the assistant secretary of defense for special operations and low-intensity warfare, said in a statement that the Pentagon may assist U.S. citizens find safe routes out of Sudan.
“[The Defense Department] is at present considering actions that may include use of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities to be able to observe routes and detect threats,” he said.
Germany and France also reportedly pulled around 700 people out of the country.
More countries followed with similar efforts, including the United Kingdom, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, Canada, China, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, and Indonesia.
Yesterday, a convoy carrying some 700 United Nations, NGO, and embassy staff drove to Port Sudan, a popular extraction point now that the airport in Khartoum has closed due to fighting.
Reports of gunmen prowling the capital streets and robbing people trying to escape, as well as looters breaking into abandoned homes and shops, have persuaded most residents to stay indoors.
Heavy gunfire, airstrikes, and artillery shelling have terrorized the city despite several proposed ceasefires.
Over the weekend, the reported death toll topped 420, with nearly 4,000 people injured, though both numbers are likely to be undercounted.