In a paranoid and bizarre move that could endanger public health, the Trump administration has ordered the CDC not to share basic data with the press.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is trying to crack down on its employees’ conversations with the press, according to an internal email obtained by Axios. The message — sent by public affairs officer Jeffrey Lancashire and dated Aug. 31 — instructs all CDC employees not to speak to reporters, “even for a simple data-related question.”
On a micro level, the gag on the CDC reflects the basic paranoia of the Trump administration. There is no harm that can come from journalists sharing data with the American people about potential diseases, epidemics, and the health of the country, so the request is bizarre, but when examined from a macro point of view the crackdown on public knowledge makes perfect sense.
Donald Trump and his administration don’t want the American people to know what their government is doing or not doing. The Trump administration has scrubbed data on education rights for students with disabilities, climate change data, and is systemically going through information that the federal government used to share with the public and either removing from websites or making agencies unavailable to the press.
There is a campaign of information suppression being carried out within the Executive Branch of the federal government.
The Trump administration wants people to know less and believe them more.
The Trump White House is so paranoid and closed down that they are willing to endanger American lives by keeping people in the dark about diseases and epidemics.