Associated Press reporter Christina Hoag drew special praise for "fair coverage" from the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) for a story on bullying. "Fair coverage" in GLAAD-speak is completely one-sided "news" with no space for conservative points of view.
"Kids, even as young as middle school age, feel more emboldened to openly express their sexual or gender orientation," Hoag wrote, "but many are not prepared for a possible backlash, gay-rights advocates say." The voices of "backlash" are too evil to quote, apparently. The 1100-word story was slanted enough to be posted on the leftist website Salon. These were the six people Hoag quoted for AP, as she described them:
1. Jill Marcellus, spokeswoman for the Gay-Straight Alliance Network
2. Raymond Ferronato, a 16-year-old gay junior in Antioch, California
3. Travis Brown, an anti-bullying speaker now on a 200-school tour
4. Kira Garcia, a high school senior who “could no longer stand by while witnessing gay friends being taunted”
5. Benji Delgadillo, transgender senior who “requested his history teacher include gay people in lessons”
6. Activist James Gilliam of the ACLU
Gay-activist groups were the experts cited, as well: "According to a 2009 survey by the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network, 85 percent of gay teens reported harassment at school within the previous year and two-thirds felt unsafe at school because of their sexual orientation. The problem also extends to boys perceived as effeminate and girls deemed masculine."
Obama's administration is upheld as vigilant: 'Federal laws clearly uphold students' rights to express sexual orientation - boys, for example, are legally allowed to wear skirts just as girls can wear pants - and obligate schools to provide all students with a safe environment, but problems tend to arise on a social level, often outside the classroom."
You can't pray in the classroom, but boys can wear skirts. That kind of "expression" is highly protected.
GLAAD hailed the story with this paragraph:
GLAAD applauds the Associated Press for its fair coverage of this important issue. Pieces like these, which are printed in popular newspapers like the Washington Post, take the story of bullying in schools to the masses, and, in doing so, raise awareness of a nationwide problem that can only be resolved with the support of parents, students, educators, legislators, and the public at large.
The story sounded like a press release from the first few paragraphs:
LOS ANGELES (AP) - A history teacher amends his lessons on the civil rights movement to include the push for gay equality. A high school removes Internet filters blocking gay advocacy websites. Six gay students sue their district, saying officials failed to protect them from bullies.
After anti-gay bullying led to a spate of teen suicides last year, school districts across the country are stepping up efforts to prevent such incidents, while more students are coming forward to report bullies.
"It's an issue that has taken over the public consciousness since last fall," said Jill Marcellus, spokeswoman for the Gay-Straight Alliance Network. "People realize it doesn't have to be this way. We can make it better."
Awareness of anti-gay bullying is increasing as acceptance of gay people has grown in society. Gay marriage is legal in several states, gays are now permitted to serve openly in the military and, in California, schools will soon have to teach gay-rights history.
AP, just like gay advocacy groups, effortlessly blurs the issue of bullying with every other item on the liberal gay-acceptance agenda.