UPDATED: Christianity Today Favors 'Anti-abortion' Over 'Pro-life' Label?

screencap from CTliveblog Twitter pageUpdated below: CT editor responds to NewsBusters.

Evangelical magazine Christianity Today is using the term "anti-abortion," rather than "pro-life," to refer to a CatholicVote.com ad which NBC has refused to air during the Super Bowl. (h/t @pdavidy8)

The term "anti-abortion" isn't used by reporter Sarah Pulliam in the body of her article posted at CTliveblog, but it is used in her January 30 article's headline -- Anti-Abortion Super Bowl Ad Rejected by NBC -- on the magazine's Twitter page (see screencap at right).

By using "anti-abortion" in its headline, Christianity Today appears to be following the lead of the Associated Press. The AP calls for the term "anti-abortion instead of pro-life and abortion rights instead of pro-abortion or pro-choice" in its Stylebook. AP goes further and frowns on the term "abortionist," saying it "connotes a person who performs clandestine abortions," so a reporter should "use a term such as abortion doctor or abortion practitioner," it counsels.

While many journalists and news agencies outside the AP follow the Stylebook, including (for the most part) this organization, they are free to supercede the manual where they see fit. For example, our very own NewsBusters Style Guide has this mandate for our contributors:

Refer to both sides [of the abortion debate] using their preferred language, pro-life and pro-choice.

So the question posed by David Drake [@pdavidy8] of Wyoming, Michigan, to Christianity Today remains:

Can we use the term "Pro-Life" Anti-Abortion seems like pejorative labeling

Update (11:40 p.m. EST): Christianity Today online managing editor Ted Olsen sent this reply defending the choice of "anti-abortion" as the label for the video in question:

A two-second search would have shown that we use pro-life quite a bit, Ken. What was the point of the post? To suggest that CT is compromising on abortion? What the heck?

The headline is specific. The ad is against abortion. It's not about embryonic stem cells, assisted suicide, emergency "contraception," etc. It's about abortion. And it's against it. It's an anti-abortion ad from a pro-life group.

Can you name one mainstream pro-life group that considers anti-abortion pejorative?

Proud to be anti-abortion,
Ted

Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd is the Managing Editor for NewsBusters