A Fox News panel devolved into a shouting match Monday after a conservative political commentator’s comment about autistic 16-year-old climate change activist Greta Thunberg.
Speaking about Thunberg’s radical activism, commentator Michael Knowles argued that it’s being driven not by actual science but rather by the propaganda that’s been spoon-fed to her by exploitative members of the far-left, including her own wealthy socialite parents.
“There was a study that came out in 2015 which showed that meatless diets are actually far worse for the environment than the regular meat-filled diets,” his statement began.
“They increase emissions, they increase energy use, water use, but none of that matters because the climate hysteria movement is not about science. If it were about science it would be led by scientists rather than by politicians and a mentally ill Swedish child who is being exploited by her parents and by the international left.”
(Source: Fox News)
But instead of really hearing the point, radically far-left commentator, Democrat Party activist and known liar Chris Hahn became fixated on Knowles’ correct usage of the term “mentally ill.”
“How dare you … You’re a grown man and you’re attacking a child. Shame on you,” he said.
Thunberg suffers from autism, and autism is indeed a mental illness. This is a fact. Moreover, autistic children and adults alike are more vulnerable to exploitation and manipulation.
“I’m not, I’m attacking the left for exploiting a mentally ill child,” Knowles replied.
“Relax, skinny boy!” Hahn shot back in fury. “I got this, okay? You’re attacking a child, you’re a grown man. Have some couth.”
“I’m attacking the left for exploiting a mentally ill child,” Knowles repeated.
He’s not the only one who’s noted this point. So has Mark W. Hendrickson of the Institute for Faith and Freedom, firebrand conservative activist Candace Owens, political commentator Denise McAllister and countless others:
The Democrat Shameless Exploitation of Children, including Greta Thunberg https://t.co/earYso41hF
— Howard Rothenburg (@hrothenb) September 24, 2019
One day, #GretaThunberg will realize that she is a victim of child abuse, not climate change.
I genuinely find the video circulating of her to be sad.
The Left is stooping to new lows with this blatant example of child exploitation.
— Candace Owens (@RealCandaceO) September 23, 2019
Autistic children struggle in ways we can’t even imagine, often with comorbid mental illnesses. Please, someone help #GretaThunberg by removing her from public scrutiny, exploitation and criticism. This is not good for her. And using her this way is a bad reflection on others.
— Denise McAllister (@McAllisterDen) September 23, 2019
I keep seeing that little Swedish girl on my timeline…
I kind of worry about the way she’s being paraded around and used as an activist weapon + human shield for climate change.
Let kids be kids yo. This is weird on so many levels and begs so many questions.
— ZUBY: (@ZubyMusic) September 24, 2019
Everyone is missing the bigger picture here
A young girl who is being manipulated by adults to be thrown into the spotlight to deliver their own agenda.
Those adults should be ashamed and more concerned about her wellbeing and mental state#mentalhealth
— James Jordan (@The_JamesJordan) September 24, 2019
On this Greta thing (not Waitz) — I’ve never liked it when little girls are manipulated for politics. Starting with Samantha Smith, the adorable pen pal of Andropov. Kids should be left out of it. Hell, most adults aren’t mature enough for politics.
— Jay Nordlinger (@jaynordlinger) September 23, 2019
The left has a sordid history of exploiting children.
“Maybe on your podcast you can get away and say whatever you want because nobody is listening,” Hahn continued undeterred. “You’re on national television. Be a grown-up when you’re talking about children. She’s trying to save the planet because your president doesn’t believe in climate change. And kids need to take to the streets to worry about their future. You are despicable for talking about her like that and you should apologize on national television right now.”
As of Tuesday morning, Knowles had not apologized — nor did it appear he would. Fox News, on the other hand, had issued a statement apologizing for allowing him on air.
“The comment made by Michael Knowles who was a guest on ‘The Story’ tonight was disgraceful. We apologize to Greta Thunberg and to our viewers,” a spokesperson said to the media, reportedly adding that FNC has “no plans to book Knowles again.”
Despite being thrown under the bus, Knowles continues to maintain his point on social media:
Of course not. But children should never be exploited for political purposes, and mentally ill children are particularly vulnerable. https://t.co/S5ujB0XqTp
— Michael Knowles (@michaeljknowles) September 24, 2019
Her mother wrote a book about her mental issues. There is nothing shameful about living with mental disorders.
What is shameful is exploiting a child—particularly a child with mental disorders—to advance your political agenda. https://t.co/oNR6iw7mRF
— Michael Knowles (@michaeljknowles) September 24, 2019
He’s correct — Thunberg’s mother, a wealthy opera singer and socialite, did indeed write a book last year that was in part about her daughter’s autism and the family’s struggle to overcome it.
“Greta’s name and picture may grace the book cover of the newly released German edition — which also lists her parents’ and sister’s names — but for the most part, Scenes from the Heart was written by her mother,” Deutsche Welle reported earlier this year.
“The book, to be released later this year in English, tells the world how Greta became who she is today, which might interest many people in view of her fame.”
Note that Knowles’ made his remark only hours after Thunberg delivered a disturbing speech to the United Nations in which she claimed that the world has “stolen my dreams and my childhood.” Because of the propaganda she’s been fed by the left, she genuinely believes the world is headed toward an imminent “mass extinction.” Despite what the left will argue, it’s not healthy for any child — let alone an autistic child — to think such bizarre and factually inaccurate thoughts.
But according to Hahn, it’s Knowles who’s “despicable,” as he called him Monday night on FNC.
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