Contemporary abortion advocates have moved beyond the Clinton-era “safe, legal and rare” mantra in favor of “safe, legal and accessible” – and the networks oftentimes appear to do the same.
When the Guttmacher Institute published a study revealing how the U.S. abortion rate had reached its lowest level since the Roe V. Wade decision in 1973, only one network covered the news: CBS. During the Feb. 3 “This Morning” show, co-anchor Norah O’Donnell spent 17 seconds on the story. As the online news world went berserk arguing who deserved credit for the new numbers, ABC and NBC remained silent. Story continues after video:
O’Donnell delved into her report by noting a headline: “USA Today says a new report this morning finds the abortion rate in this country dropping to its lowest levels since 1973 – that’s when the procedure became legal. In 2011, the rate fell to an average of 16.9 abortions for every 1,000 women between the ages of 15 and 44.”
The media routinely provide scant reporting of the pro-life movement – just last month, the networks found the National Zoo’s baby panda six times more worthy of coverage than the March for Life commemorating 55 million aborted.
President Obama likes to say about abortion “reasonable people can disagree.” And reasonable people – no matter which side of the debate they’re on – should agree that record-low abortions is a milestone worth celebrating. Or at least reporting.
— Katie Yoder is Staff Writer, Joe and Betty Anderlik Fellow in Culture and Media at the Media Research Center. Follow Katie Yoder on Twitter.