To be clear, much of what we are seeing of the protests coming out the U.S. are images of militia members, MAGA hats, and fundamentalist Christians — all the worst elements of far-right American politics. And for many of these people, the main purpose of going to anti-lockdown protests seems to be to “own the libs,” which seemingly takes precedence over the basic biological drive of self-preservation. It is difficult to overstate the cynicism of pandemic protesters holding signs with the slogan “my body, my choice.”

But these are not the views of everyone taking part in the protests. The images and flashpoints of far-right stupidity are simply the focal point for an American mainstream media that is, by and large, hopelessly mired in partisanship. In American political discourse, what might be called the “left” has a singular focus to “own the Republicans” and “own Trump.” Basically nothing of what we see emanating from mainstream U.S. media attempts to explain anything.