Even as Democratic officials like Rahm Emanuel promise to use their government power to punish Chick-fil-A, Good Morning America's George Stephanopoulos and Ron Claiborne on Thursday derided the fast food chain's president for speaking out against gay marriage, chiding the "firestorm" and food fight" the company has created. [See video below. MP3 here.] In contrast, the same program in 2006 praised the "spirited" and "unbowed" Dixie Chicks for expressing their First Amendment rights by trashing then-President Bush.
Co-anchor George Stephanopoulos insisted that CEO Dan Cathy's comments in support of traditional marriage have "sparked a firestorm across the Internet." Reporter Ron Claiborne mocked, "This food fight, George, is very rapidly turning into a full scale culture war." Claiborne listed Roseanne Barr, as just another celebrity, along with Ed Helms, who has spoken out against Chick-fil-A. He failed to mention Barr's deranged rants, including tweeting that "anyone who eats S--t Fil-A deserves to get the cancer."
In an interview with Mitt Romney in London on Wednesday, NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams grilled the Republican candidate about releasing more tax returns: "People hear he's not going to release the rest of his returns and they wonder why. They wonder, is there a year there where he paid no taxes? They wonder about expensive horses and houses....what is it that is preventing you from releasing the rest of your returns?" [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
In another question designed to portray Romney as secretive, Williams quoted New York Times columnist David Brooks exclaiming: "[Romney] has an amazing personal story....He can't talk about it because it involves Mormonism. He is personally a decent guy. For some reason he's not willing to talk about it. He's a hidden man." Williams fretted: "Are you a hidden man?"
The Washington Post’s fact checkers must be too busy chasing down emotionally scarred seventh grade classmates of Mitt Romney to look at ads the company accepts.
The Washington Express, a free daily publication of The Washington Post, put a four page ad on its cover by Catholic dissident group Catholics for Choice, which took remarks about Pope’s stance on condoms completely out of context and claimed that “abstinence has a high failure rate.”
The Boston Herald has reported that Mayor Tom Menino is threatening to make obtaining the necessary licenses for a family business to operate "very difficult" -- not because the business's products are controversial or hazardous, but because the privately-held company believes that marriage should be between a man and a woman.
The middle three paragraphs of an unbylined Associated Press report predictably watered down Menino's threatening posture against the Chick-fil-A fast-food chain to an issue of "discrimination" and made it appear as if there is some kind of rift between the president and the company (bolds are mine throughout this post):
The media crusade against Christian company Chick-fil-A for upholding Christian values and support companies favoring traditional marriage has reached new depths of insanity. In a satire piece blasting Chick-fil-A, Huffington Post contributor Domenick Scudera used his biblical ignorance to bash the Christian restaurant.
Scudera lambasted the Christian firm in a July 19 article snidely titled “Did Jesus Eat Chick-fil-A at the Last Supper?” His beef with Chick-fil-A: that the owner, Dan Cathy, stated that his “restaurant is based on biblical principles.”
In a pre-recorded interview which ran on Wednesday's Piers Morgan Tonight, CNN's Piers Morgan pressed Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia from the left on abortion rights and Scalia's views on Roe versus Wade.
After earlier articulating the argument that a Supreme Court should perhaps be flexible as times change, Morgan again brought up the issue of "changing times" and seemed to lump abortion in with other rights that women acquired in the 20th century, as he asserted, "Everybody believed that was the right thing to do."
Media coverage of both the "Fortnight for Freedom" events sponsored by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), and the competing "Nuns on the Bus" campaign, reveal interesting results.
A total of 141 dioceses, involving tens of thousands of Catholics, participated in the USCCB events; it ended with a crowd of 5,000 at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception on July 4. Although Bill Moyers wrote that "a bus filled with nuns" participated in the "Nuns on the Bus" campaign, in actual fact a total of two nuns made the entire bus trip; there were never more than six at any one time on the bus. No matter, CNN did eight stories on the nuns, and none on the bishops; MSNBC did six on the nuns, and one on the bishops; and CBS News did two on the nuns and none on the bishops.
On Tuesday's The View on ABC, the group criticized death threats made against actor Brad Pitt's conservative mother after she wrote a letter to the editor of the Springfield News-Leader in Missouri defending Mitt Romney and asking people not to vote for President Obama, citing her religious objections to abortion and same-sex marriage.
The title of a post at Business Insider crows, “Here's The Ballsy Businessweek Cover That's Going To Piss Off The Mormon Church.” In truth, it should anger anyone who finds it low and, frankly, un-American, to attack a candidate – directly or indirectly – through his religion.
But with Mitt Romney running neck and neck with Barack Obama, Bloomberg Businessweek saw the opportunity to further the Obama campaign’s jihad against Romney the super-wealthy tax-avoiding capitalist, while reminding readers that Romney belongs to this sort of strange, secretive cult that’s also a business empire of questionable legitimacy.
Now here’s a stretch: what began on the front page of Thursday’s Washington Post as a story on the Diocese of Arlington, Virginia asking volunteer religion teachers to sign a fidelity oath to church teachings concluded with an image of German Catholic bishops doing a Heil Hitler salute.
This loaded Nazi reference – in a church now led by someone conscripted into Hitler’s army – came from a Rev. Ronald Nuzzi at Notre Dame, a college which quite publicly displayed its lack of orthodoxy by honoring President HHS Mandate Obama in 2009:
Hollywood and the American left love diversity, except when it offends their "progressive" value system.
Witness the reaction to actor Brad Pitt's mother, Jane, who publicly opposed President Obama's re-election. Mrs. Pitt's pro-life, anti-gay marriage statement to her local paper last week enflamed the Tolerance Mob. And her mere expression of dissident political views exposed the glittering hypocrisy of the left-wing "No H8" campaign.
Wednesday's Today show on NBC ran a four and a half minute piece profiling Saratoga Springs, Utah, Mayor, and congressional candidate Mia Love, who has a very good chance of being the first black female Republican elected to Congress.
On CNN's sister network HLN, when you don’t know how to answer an interview question, bash the Catholic Church - you’ll have your anti-Catholic bigotry promoted by CNN. In an interview with HLN’s Dr. Drew featured on CNN.com, stripper Joslyn Jones claimed that “most stuff that goes on at church” is “dirtier than what goes on in strip clubs.”
When challenged by Dr. Drew about the drug use and trauma history common among strippers, Jones deflected the question, bizarrely arguing: “It’s definitely very common, but it’s actually like, um, like I always try to use the analogy. You know, you look at the Catholic Church. How much nonsense and debauchery, and disrespect, and really underground, you know, seedy stuff goes on, that’s, the Catholic Church, you’re supposed to go to Church and everybody’s like oh I go to Church and I’m all prim and proper, sweet – it’s not really like that. Most stuff that goes on at church is dirtier than what goes on in strip clubs.”
It appears as though MSNBC's Martin Bashir is bent on painting Republicans as anti-Mormom bigots who are terrified of their own presumptive presidential nominee's faith. In a completely ridiculous and extreme statement on his program Tuesday, Bashir claimed that, “he [Mitt Romney] won't talk about his Mormonism because many Republicans see that religion as a cult.”
While there certainly are some folks who happen to be Republicans who believe this, Bashir wants his gullible audience to believe this sentiment is widespread among the GOP. Apparently Bashir doesn’t know that anti-Mormonism is more common among Democrats not Republicans.
Has CNN's integrity sunk so low that it is now using works of fiction as sources to round out its own reports?
While covering the story of Fox News reporter Greg Burke moving to the Vatican's own communications team, CNN mentioned his membership in Opus Dei and referenced the organization's (quite negative) portrayal in the fictional book and movie The Da Vinci Code. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
When it's Sunday on National Public Radio, it must be time to announce the Catholic Church is out of step with modern times. On Weekend Edition Sunday, NPR granted a soft-soap eight-minute interview to New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, the front-runner to succeed Michael Bloomberg as Mayor. NPR touted: "Christine Quinn has a notable biography. She's from an Irish family, she's Catholic and gay."
She's so "Catholic" that her "wedding" to Kim Catullo last year featured her walking down the aisle with her father to Beyonce's "Ave Maria," which is just another love song, not the actual Hail Mary hymn in any way. Her partner marched down the aisle with her dad, too...to Bruce Springsteen. NPR anchor David Greene asked as one of the "most powerful gay women" in America, if she shouldn't just leave the church that won't accept her homosexuality:
Time magazine is shooting straight at Mitt Romney’s religion. On the Time Ideas blog, the conservative-bashing psychoanalyst Dr. Justin Frank has an article titled “The Root of Mitt Romney’s Comfort With Lying.” That root, he says, is Mormonism.
Dr. Frank is agitated that Romney would “lie” about Obama’s economic record: "But this pattern of lying and not acknowledging it, even when confronted directly, has persisted and led me to look for other sources of Romney’s behavior and of his clear comfort with continuing it. I think much of this comfort stems from his Mormon faith."
Yesterday the Southern Baptist Convention elected their first black president, an historic moment for an organization that got its start defending slavery in pre-Civil War America.
CNN Starting Point host Soledad O'Brien interviewed Fred Luter Jr., who will be installed as president Wednesday evening. The interview on the main was fine, but towards the end, contributor Margaret Hoover pressed Luter as to whether he would champion as a "civil rights" cause, "inclusiveness of gay Americans," referring it seems to same-sex marriage. Luter answered in the negative, citing the Bible's teachings on the definition of marriage. It's then that O'Brien retorted that his stance put him in opposition to President Obama, as if to suggest that were a scandalous position for him to be in:
On CNN Newsroom this morning, anchor Carol Costello reported on "Nuns on the Bus:"
"Normally, you see nuns working in their closely knit communities and religious orders. But a group of nuns in the United States, they are hitting the road," she reported. "They are taking a bus on nine-state tour. They are protesting the Ryan budget cuts they say will hurt the poor the most. The nuns are in Milwaukee today and that's where Ted Rowlands is. So the nuns are jumping into the political fray."
Funny, but they’re not making much noise about using government to discriminate in favor of their lifestyle. One Canadian activist even declared: “We’ll only take away charitable status from the buildings where the priests live and where the people pray.”
So here's how it appears to me and I suspect many other news readers, never mind the real motivations. At the Associated Press, when you're covering situations like suicide bomber attacks on Christian churches in Nigeria yesterday, you hold out as long as you can in speculating about who is responsible, even though Islamist Boko Haram terrorists (and only Boko Haram terrorists) have claimed credit for previous attacks in that country, and even though no other religion on earth generates large numbers of people who claim to be its adherents who are willing to blow themselves up so they can kill as many infidels as possible.
Then, once the inevitable claim of responsibility arrives, you treat it as old news (the bombings were a whole 24-36 hours ago, y'know), focus your headline and coverage on "Christian" reprisals instead (even though there is no element of Christian doctrine which sanctions random reprisals), and identify who carried out the attacks as late as you possibly, so it will end up not making most broadcast and many print reports. Here are excerpts:
It would appear that the establishment press is determined to portray a "both sides are at fault" equivalency as much as possible in Nigeria where almost none exists.
Earlier today, Patrick Poole at the PJ Tatler pointed out that a brief initial Associated Press item from Lagos would cause a person, in Poole's words, to "come away mystified as to why these churches were subject to apparently random 'violence.'" He specifically objected to the vagueness of a sentence claiming that "Churches have been increasingly targeted by violence in Nigeria." Later more detailed dispatches from Reuters and the AP aren't much more helpful, especially as they both fail to tag the principal perpetrators of the violence, the Boko Haram, as the terrorists that they are.
Perhaps the most common justification for government intrusion into people's lives and into the economy at large is the notion that "doing something" is better than preserving limited government.
The usual rejoinder from the right is that capitalism has done more to alleviate poverty and is therefore a more efficient way of helping raise living standards than socialism or its related ideologies. While that answer has the advantage of being true, it is often unpersuasive for those looking for an answer to a moral question. That is the task at hand for Robert Sirico, a Catholic priest and center-right thinker in his excellent new book, Defending the Free Market: The Moral Case for a Free Economy.
Saturday’s Washington Post religion page was completely spoiled by liberal "On Faith" editor-in-chief Sally Quinn, whose column bizarrely connected the hot "mommy-porn" trilogy "Fifty Shades of Grey" to religion and even to Mother Teresa.
"I think the "Fifty Shades" phenomenon is about religion," Quinn proposed. "Not religion in the conventional sense of the word, but in how we are redefining faith practices today as more and more people -- especially women -- shun man-made traditions yet continue to yearn for religious experiences." What?
The conservative Faith and Freedom Coalition is in the middle of a three-day "conference and strategy briefing" in Washington, D.C., which proved to be a sufficient justification for MSNBC's Martin Bashir to bring back anti-conservative-Christian hatemonger Frank Schaeffer to denounce the meeting as essentially a congress of an American Christian Taliban.
"I think what you have to understand when you look at the religious right in action these days is that they speak in Orwellian doublespeak. They say the opposite of what they mean. They talk about faith and freedom, the conference should really be called Politics and Bondage," Schaeffer, the prodigal son of the late famous evangelical theologian Francis Schaeffer snarled. [MP3 audio here; video is posted after the page break]
A day after asking if the Catholic church is waging a "war on women," CNN teed up liberal Sister Simone Campbell by asking if Rome is being "dictatorial" in its recent dealings with American nuns. After a group of U.S. nuns has been targeted by the Vatican for reform, CNN has shamelessly been promoting the nuns' side of the story with no guest to represent the church's side.
Starting Point anchor Soledad O'Brien mentioned her colleague's absurd "war on women" question from the previous day and asked Sister Campbell if she agreed that "Rome is essentially remaining dictatorial, non-collaborative, but the American Catholic Church is not." [Video below the break. Audio here.]
CNN is friendly to Christianity -- as long as the priests, ministers and religious play into the network's liberal agenda. If Christian guests stand up for traditional marriage, however, they can expect a muchcolder welcome if they even make it on air.
So it was no surprise that CNN has been promoting a dissenting nun's struggle with the Vatican, and making clear that it is siding with wayward American nuns after the Catholic Church has announced a reform of the Leadership Council of Women Religious (LCWR). Anchor Christine Romans tossed softball after softball to liberal Sister Maureen Fiedler on Tuesday's Starting Point, and mocked the Vatican's criticism of the LCWR.
"Let me ask you, women can't be priests. Women – if you follow church teaching, can't use contraception," Romans stated before noting the irony of the prominence of statues of Mary in Catholic churches. "[W]omen in the church when you look at some of the teachings, is there a war on woman within your church?" she asked Fiedler. [Video below the break. Audio here.]