Mollie Hemingway of The Federalist has an excellent post today deconstructing how the liberal Texas Tribune website served as an uncritical PR agent for a Texas couple -- Marni Evan and John Lockhart -- who lamented how a new Texas law pushed them to seek an abortion out-of-state
In "Planned Parenthood's Abortion Theater," Hemingway notes how (emphasis mine):
The Tribune video and accompanying story are a fascinating look at media coverage of abortion. As has become standard in such situations, no difficult questions are posed to the couple. Even though other abortionists in Austin meet the standards of Texas’ new law, for instance, her curious claim that she had to use frequent flyer miles to book a flight to Seattle, of all places, to abort the baby receives no apparent push back. (Later we’re told she did just book with a different doctor in the same town in which she lives — no flight necessary.)
Marni says she and her fiancé looked at the pros and cons of allowing the unborn child to continue living or aborting it. They looked at “the health of our relationship” (presumably good enough to be engaged and knocking boots without effective birth control other than abortion), “how long we’ve been together” (presumably long enough to be betrothed to each other), and “do we have enough built as a foundation to create a loving happy healthy family” (John is sitting right there when she lets this line just hang there, uncomfortably).
Marni says they considered their self-employment and variable paychecks. For what it’s worth, even if they both only made the median income for males and females in Austin, which is doubtful considering their careers, that would put them in the wealthiest 3 percent of the global population, with an income 20 times the typical person.
At the end of this magnificent and compelling case for the violent act of abortion, John says, “For all the reasons Marni described, this was absolutely not the right time for us to have a child.”
Did I mention she’s 37 and he’s 43? Is this really the best case abortion proponents could put forward to tug at the heart-strings of abortion moderates? A financially well-off, educated, older couple who might be witnessing their last chance at conceiving a child?
Or as I put it on Twitter:
Later in her article, Hemingway raised another excellent point where the media are falling asleep on the job:
If 97% of Planned Parenthood’s services aren’t abortion, why in the world would an abortion regulation cause a dozen Planned Parenthood clinics to close?
Closing clinics make for great headlines and more dramatic court briefs. But a media mildly more skeptical of savvy public relations campaigns and well-scripted legal wrangling might serve the public a bit more.