As the COVID-19 death toll surges and masked men in unmarked vans snatch protestors off the streets of Portland, President Donald Trump is sitting down for an interview with the Barstool Sports guy and the White House Press Secretary is defending the police by lying about the cancellation of a children’s cartoon.
Is it true that Cops and Live P.D. were canceled in the wake of George Floyd’s murder at the hands of a police officer? Yes. Is it true that PAW Patrol, an animated series where animals recycle and put out fires, was also canceled? No. Kayleigh McEnany’s claim that Nickelodeon canceled the show is about as accurate as her description of it being “about cops.” (It is not about cops. There is one dog who is a cop. His name is Chase.)
As Snopes points out, McEnany’s comment appears to have roots in a New York Times piece from June. The piece, “The Protests Come for PAW Patrol,” unpacks the debates around pop culture’s depiction of cops that sprung up as protests against police brutality raged across the world, and right-wing figures like Eric Trump exploited it to rile up followers they knew wouldn’t read the actual article. The online backlash to PAW Patrol was mostly in jest, which is what resulted in several satirical memes calling for its cancellation. Around the same time, this (very funny) Onion article from 2018 was being recirculated.
That’s not to say there aren’t some people out there who would like to see it canceled for its cuddly portrayal of a K-9 cop. This 2018 Medium post, for example, calls it “a misogynistic, conservative authoritarian fantasy.”
Nevertheless, PAW Patrol is not canceled.
Nor is Lego, as McEnany falsely states, “halting the sale of its Lego City Police Station.” This claim was also made by a different Trump sycophant, Brad Parscale, back in June, and Lego responded then to say that it is “not removing any LEGO sets from sale” and that any reports otherwise are “false.”
Dumbest timeline. We know.
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