Greta Will Be on CNN Thursday. There's Controversy Over It

There's some 'confusion' as to why she's been asked to appear at a town hall on coronavirus
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted May 14, 2020 10:15 AM CDT

(Newser) – Greta Thunberg is confident she had the coronavirus a few weeks back—though it's not clear if that's why CNN has chosen her to appear in its Thursday town hall on the pandemic. Per the New York Post, the 17-year-old Swedish climate activist will appear with Dr. Sanjay Gupta, ex-HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, and former CDC chief Richard Besser, with Anderson Cooper co-hosting. Forbes notes Thunberg's inclusion was "met with confusion" online. Besides question marks from journalists, health professionals, and academics, Donald Trump Jr. also had something to say, with more than a tinge of sarcasm. "Greta Thunberg having a remarkable career already in that as a teenager she's now a world renowned infectious disease specialist and epidemiologist AND a leading scientific voice when it comes to global climate policy," he tweeted. "Just wow so impressive."

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Not everyone is thrown by Thunberg's participation. "It's a town hall, not a meeting of scientists," one commenter posted on Twitter. Author Roxane Gay similarly doesn't seem to get why everyone's making such a big deal. "Unqualified men appear on cable all day every day, bloviating endlessly, but Greta Thunberg is a bridge too far? Ok," she tweeted. Others noted that Thunberg could appeal to a younger audience, much as she's done with her work for the environment, the New York Daily News notes. "Like the climate crisis, the coronavirus pandemic is a child-rights crisis," she said last month after announcing she'd be donating $100,000 to UNICEF to help children who may be suffering amid the pandemic. No word yet from CNN itself on how or why it decided to include Thunberg on the panel. (Read more Greta Thunberg stories.)

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