For snobby liberal film critics, few match A.O. Scott of The New York Times. I remember giggling at this puff on PBS for a George Clooney message movie: "I liked 'Syriana.' I thought it was very hard to follow in a way that I found very engaging and bracing. I felt like the arguments it was making and the connections it was making were very interesting."
So it’s no shock that Scott would slam the new pro-life movie “Gimme Shelter” on Friday as “a crude, earnest parable that uses some of the techniques of indie filmmaking to deliver a culturally conservative message.” Then he slammed it as ideologically ferocious:
The New York Times has a very strange sense of morality. Abortion at any time for any reason is never savage. When the Kermit Gosnell case erupted, the Times could only editorialize it was irrelevant: “What does the trial of a Philadelphia doctor who is accused of performing illegal late-term abortions by inducing labor and then killing viable fetuses have to do with the debate over legal abortion?”
But on Sunday, the Times Magazine published a column titled “Is It Immoral to Watch the Super Bowl?” Writer Steve Almond, best known previously for resigning an adjunct professorship at Boston College because Condoleezza Rice was picked for commencement speaker, argued that sending men to the NFL was like sending our underclass soldiers off to war in Afghanistan (don't miss the part about the late Pat Tillman):
Kudos to New York Times public editor Margaret Sullivan for asking why the Times couldn’t provide much coverage of Wednesday’s March for Life. Hundreds, if not thousands of New Yorkers were there, so “Was this local participation, or the event itself, worthy of a news story in the paper of record? Apparently not.”
“The Times, in print, published only a stand-alone photograph of the event on Page A17 with a two-line caption on Thursday.” Sullivan reproduced complaints from pro-life readers:
MSNBC's furor over Mike Huckabee's remarks on women and the Democrats boiled over on "Now with Alex Wagner" on Thursday afternoon. Radical feminist "comedians" Sarah Silverman and Lizz Winstead were promoted once again for their "V to Shining V" crusade for "Lady Parts Justice" -- that is, untrammeled abortion, the full Gosnell. (See previous promotional segment here.)
“It’s so bizarre,” Silverman said about Huckabee's remarks, smelling careerism and insincerity. “When a politician is speaking on behalf of those people who are pulling their strings, for their purse and for their, um, the betterment of their career, it’s gross. I’m just an actress and when I speak out politically it does not help my career at all.” Silverman babbled and rambled about how sperm can smell, leaving Lizz Winstead to look like the articulate side of the Left.
On Friday, the Supreme Court issued a one-paragraph order in Little Sisters of the Poor et al v. Sebeluis et al. It told the Sisters that for the case to continue with no enforcement of the Affordable Care Act's contraception mandate, they need only to inform the government in writing "that they are non-profit organizations that hold themselves out as religious and have religious objections to providing coverage for contraceptive services." That's easy, because that's what they are, and that's their position.
As a result, the government has been "enjoined from enforcing against the applicants the challenged provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and related regulations pending final disposition." In other words, the Sisters will get their way until the case is decided. After the jump, I'll present a bit of the sane coverage by the Washington Post's Robert Barnes, followed by portions of the reality-avoiding writeup of Jesse Holland found at the Associated Press.
Wendy Davis, the Texas state senator running for governor, became a liberal superhero last June when she filibustered a bill to prohibit abortions after 20 weeks. (This was the good filibuster, not that awful filibuster three months later by Ted Cruz -- that was just grandstanding.)
Apart from her enthusiasm for abortion (and you have to admit, abortion is really cool), the centerpiece of Davis' campaign is her life story. Also the fact that she's a progressive woman who doesn't look like Betty Friedan.
Carol Costello predictably carried water for the cultural left on Friday's CNN Newsroom during a segment about the firestorm over former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee's "Uncle Sugar" attack on Democrats. Costello trumpeted how "Democrats are quite gleeful" over Huckabee's remarks, and bemoaned conservatives' opposition to ObamaCare's contraception mandate: "I just can't believe we're still talking about birth control in 2014. It's just weird to me."
The anchor also glossed over the religious liberty component to the debate, and suggested that the GOP/conservatives should just drop the issue: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
If there really was a “war on women” there should have been a good number of female combatants on the national mall Wednesday to protest against the March for Life, the largest annual pro-life gathering in the country. However only about 20 women, all appearing to be under 25 years old, showed up to defend abortion Wednesday, in the face of tens of thousands of women who stood against it. Pictures Below:
When most people hear the word "Fargo" these days, they might think about the dark comedy by the Coen brothers where a crook ends up in a wood-chipper. But when you think of getting an abortion in Fargo, you're supposed to think happy thoughts due to a feminist group called "Plants for Patients."
Stacy Trasancos at Lifenews.com reported on this group, devoted to comforting women who've had abortions by giving them a plant so they can "bring one life home."
Hollywood better be careful if it values its ability to insult and alienate conservative Americans. On the heels of the implicitly patriotic and plainly pro-military “Lone Survivor” comes an even less likely studio offering. “Gimme Shelter” will be out in wide release and boasts an A-list cast – and it’s the story of a young girl risking everything to save her unborn baby.
The Ronald Krauss film follows pregnant teenager “Apple” (Vanessa Hudgens) as she flees her abusive mother (Rosario Dawson) only to face rejection from her Wall Street father (Brendan Fraser) and find herself alone and desperate on the streets. Apple's luck changes when she encounters a kind hearted stranger (James Earl Jones) who guides her to a shelter for girls fighting to save their lives – and the lives growing within them. More after the trailer.
Roe v. Wade was horribly decided, as even some prominent supporters of abortion rights will agree. But for now, it remains the law of the land. And it establishes a constitutional right to abortion. Amazingly, Thomas Roberts appears unaware of that.
On today's Morning Joe, commenting on Mike Huckabee's speech of yesterday on how Dems wrongly accuse Republicans of a "war on women," Roberts twice said "if old white men could get pregnant, abortion would be a constitutional right." View the video after the jump.
At the 41st annual March for Life, hundreds of youth groups, families, churches and religious leaders were there, as expected. But also college groups, women’s health organizations, Latino groups, and even pro-life gay alliances were in attendance, along with a number of U.S. Senators and Representatives, to mark the anniversary of Roe v. Wade. Video Below:
Is it too much to ask for Americans to get their news from serious adults? Yes, there’s always been bias in media reporting, but it’s hard to imagine journalists who once crossed Europe with Patton cooing “Pandas are magic” into the camera while a real story of genocide is being told in the streets.
But that’s where we are. On Wednesday, hundreds of thousands braved freezing temperatures to join the 41st annual March for Life in Washington, D.C. to protest and commemorate the 55 million human babies who have been legally killed since 1973’s Roe v. Wade decision. The event featured speeches from activists and politicians, and even garnered the tweeted prayers of Pope Francis. For all that, the broadcast networks combined devoted a total of just 46 seconds to the March. ABC offered 24 seconds and NBC gave it 22 seconds, correctly noting the “huge turnout” despite brutal weather conditions. CBS didn’t bother to cover it at all.
On the 41st anniversary of Roe v. Wade, CNN's senior legal analyst smeared the entire pro-life movement in saying on Wednesday's AC360 Later, "They want women to have no control over their own bodies."
Jeff Toobin was referring to the Texas case where a hospital, claiming that it is following state law, has kept a brain-dead woman on life support against the family's wishes in order to bring her unborn child to term. Toobin went on a rant against the law: [Video below the break. Audio here.]
On her Tuesday MSNBC show, host Andrea Mitchell tried to downplay the controversy swirling over the misleading biography put forward by Texas Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis: "[She's] being forced to answer media reports down there that she had slightly altered her resume or focused on the single mom aspects of it and didn't really give the timeline correctly." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
Mitchell continued by actually warning Republicans to tread lightly on the issue: "You never want to be on the defensive about giving your biography when you're running for office, but this is a careful balancing act also, given her appeal to many women and the fact that she's potentially running against a man."
The annual March for Life took place yesterday in our nation’s capital, and MSNBC marked the occasion by inviting a slew of pro-choice guests onto its daytime programming to slime the pro-life movement without giving any pro-lifers a chance to respond. Between 6 a.m. and 5 p.m. on Wednesday, MSNBC featured six pro-choice guests and zero pro-life guests.
During the 11 a.m. hour of MSNBC Live, host Brian Shactman brought on Ilyse Hogue, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America, to offer her predictable insight on the march and abortion rights in general. Shactman began by attempting to marginalize the march -- attended by tens of thousands of mostly young people -- asking, “I mean, what's the impact of the March for Life? Does it have one?” [Video below. MP3 audio here.]
The Republican National Committee (RNC) is currently having its annual winter meetings, and what better way for MSNBC to discuss its progress than to bring on two liberal reporters to discuss the gathering.
During her January 23 Jansing and Co. program, host Chris Jansing invited on no Republican to discuss the RNC meetings, instead opting to bring on MSNBC’s Joy-Ann Reid, who herself is a former Obama campaign operative, and The New York Times’ Nick Confessore -- no conservative he. Jansing began the segment by discussing abortion and concluded that a big part of the GOP strategy was “how to blunt the Democrats' successful ongoing narrative of the war on women.”
On Tuesday's PoliticsNation on MSNBC, host Al Sharpton pretended that the misleading details liberal hero Wendy Davis has used to exaggerate her biography are merely "minor details" and actually suggested that it is the "right wing" who should be embarrassed by repeating the revelations as he ended his regular "Nice Try" segment by proclaiming:
Today marks the 41st annual “March for Life” in which thousands of pro-lifers ascend on Washington D.C. to mark the Roe v. Wade decision and show their solidarity in opposition to abortion, many of them faithful Catholics. Not surprisingly, Pope Francis sent out an official tweet showing his support for the “March for Life” in which he said, “I join the March for Life in Washington with my prayers, may God help us respect all life, especially the most vulnerable.”
Unfortunately for one MSNBC host, the fact the Pope would show support for one of the Catholic Church’s most sacred values, the protection of all innocent human life, seemed to be too much to handle. During her daily “Tweet of the Day” segment on Jansing & Co., Chris Jansing sniffed that Pope Francis’s pro-life values were “reflective of ways in which the church certainly has not changed.”
Surprise! The Washington Post on Wednesday profiled two young female pro-life activists on the front of the Style section. Not a surprise? The headline: “Antiabortion forces’ rising young stars.” Reporter Krissah Thompson wrote “Kristan Hawkins, 28, and Lila Rose, 25, are central players in the antiabortion movement’s resurgence.”
In the same corner of the front page yesterday, the Post oozed all over Gloria Steinem without a single opposing word. (Or consider past 100-percent goo for Planned Parenthood boss Cecile Richards.) The profile on Hawkins and Rose was heavily dosed with abortion advocates denouncing them as unethical or extreme.
It’s been almost a year since Pope Francis began his pontificate, and the liberal media has hung on his every word, searching for evidence the head of the Church is an ideological, if not theological ally.
On Friday, as I noted on Saturday, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo told public radio's Susan Arbetter that "extreme conservatives" – that is, people who are pro-life, understand the clear meaning of the Second Amendment, or wish to keep marriage as it has traditionally been defined – "have no place in the state of New York, because that’s not who New Yorkers are." Note well that Cuomo's remarks are still not news at the Associated Press's national site.
On Sunday, Cuomo's people sent and released an "open letter" containing a very inaccurate transcription of the original interview accusing the New York Post's Aaron Short of being "entirely reckless with facts and the truth" in his report ("Gov. Cuomo to conservatives: Leave NY!"). As I demonstrated on Monday, the only reasonable interpretation of what Cuomo said is that Republican Party members who hold any one of the three positions noted in the previous paragraph "have no place in the state of New York." In the past several days, the matter has escalated. The Post has continued to cover the story – that's what newspapers are supposed to do – while, in an extraordinary move, the Counsel to the Governor has entered the fray with what can only be interpreted as threatening language.
What happens when a teenager who came into the world as an unplanned teenage pregnancy ends up with an unplanned pregnancy of her own? Will she bend to all the “helpful” insistence that she needs to exercise her “right to choose” before she is, as one callous presidential contender put it, “punished with a baby”?
This is the plot of “Gimme Shelter,” a new movie that departs from the feminist pack mentality of Hollywood. Agnes “Apple” Bailey -- played in a breakout role by “High School Musical” star Vanessa Hudgens -- looks like a poster child for Planned Parenthood at the film’s beginning: sixteen years old, down and out after living in a series of foster homes, and now living with a drug-addicted mother who sometimes beats her.
On Tuesday, ABC, CBS, and NBC's morning newscasts all hyped the White House's announcement that President Obama's would meet with Pope Francis in March, and emphasized their apparent agreement on economic issues. On CBS This Morning, Bill Plante touted the "chance for him [Obama] to align himself with the agenda of the very popular new pope, at a time when the President's own popularity here at home is at a low point."
ABC's Robin Roberts even asserted on Good Morning America that the two world leaders are "very similar." However, none of these morning shows reported that just a week earlier, the Pope's secretary of state "expressed [his] concern...for the healthcare reforms in relation to the guarantee of religious freedom and conscientious objection" during a meeting with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry. [MP3 audio available here; video clips below the jump]
Texas Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis, who is considered a hero of the pro-abortion crowd yet declared herself "pro-life" in November as her people attempted to bully the local media into twisting stories her way, is blaming her opponent for a Sunday Dallas Morning News story which pointed to significant discrepancies between her campaign biography and the truth.
It's pretty bad when I have to say that the Politico's Katie Glueck did a far better job with this story than Will Weissert at the Associated Press, but that's the case. Glueck at least challenged Davis's contention of an Abbott connection – getting a mushy, meaningless answer – and carried the unconditional denial of any contact from the Abbott campaign by DMN reporter Wayne Slater. Weissert delivered neither. Both missed something important Steve Ertelt at Life News noticed in a series of pathetic Davis tweets.
The administration of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo tried to hit back at the press on Sunday for supposedly misunderstanding his Friday morning statement to Susan Arbetter on the public radio show "Capitol Pressroom" that "extreme conservatives ... have no place in New York." As I noted on Saturday (at NewsBusters; at BizzyBlog), the Governor made it clear that "extreme conservatives" include those who are right to life, understand the clear meaning of the Second Amendment, and believe in traditional marriage.
But to go after the press, Cuomo's people had to find a news outlet besides a public radio station which actually reported on what he said. Even though his Friday remarks were self-evidently newsworthy, that appears to have been pretty difficult. The Associated Press's national site still doesn't have a story; nor does the New York Times or the Politico. Cuomo's peeps chose to go after the New York Post, whose Aaron Short went to the next step in Cuomo's stated logic in running a story headlined "Gov. Cuomo to conservatives: Leave NY!." Team Cuomo's response in full follows the jump (bolds are mine; words Cuomo's people left out are in caps; other words Cuomo didn't say are crossed out):
Imagine if Texas Senator Ted Cruz or Lone Star State Governor Rick Perry told a public radio show's host that "people who support abortion, gun control, and same-sex marriage have no place in Texas." There would be breaking news alerts on every cable news station. It would be a press obsession for weeks. More immediately, there would be intense pushback from the show's host.
On the public radio show "Capitol Pressroom" with Susan Arbetter on Friday morning, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, who is surely assessing the 2016 presidential landscape, asserted that "extreme conservatives" – that is, people who are pro-life, understand the clear meaning of the Second Amendment, or wish to keep marriage as it has traditionally been defined – "have no place in the state of New York, because that’s not who New Yorkers are." Arbetter just let Cuomo's remarks slide on by without meaningful follow-up, and arguably appeared to agree with their thrust. Audio and relevant portions of the transcript follow the jump.
Yesterday the Supreme Court heard a case, McCullen v. Coakley, which calls into question a Massachusetts law which establishes a speech-free-zone extending 35 feet from the entrance to an abortion clinic. That law provides, however, an exemption for the speech of employees or agents of said abortion clinics, effectively serving as restriction on speech which is NOT content-neutral.
To the extent that liberals in the media have bothered to cover this, there is no shortage of sympathy for the abortion-rights absolutists who vociferously defend this law. That's why a kudos is in order for the Daily Beast not only publishing but promoting on its landing page pro-life liberal Kirsten Powers's warning to her fellow lefties headlined, "Anti-Free Speech Zones Used to Silence Pro-Lifers Could Come Back to Haunt Liberals." Here's an excerpt (emphasis mine):
The New York Times spent months debating before deciding not to ban the term “illegal immigrant” entirely (it’s simply discouraged), but the word “fetus” is used without any alarm. At the top of page A-14 on Wednesday is the headline “Suing to End Life Support for Woman and Fetus.”
It’s an update on the sad story of Marlise Munoz, who is on life support and whose family wants her and her baby removed from life support. The F-bomb (to pro-life people) was dropped three times in the Manny Fernandez story, in addition to the headline:
In a glowing profile of Texas state senator and Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis that amounted to a campaign commercial on Wednesday's NBC Today, correspondent Maria Shriver proclaimed: "Wendy Davis became a familiar name last year when she stood in her pink tennis shoes for eleven hours to defeat a Texas abortion bill. Even though the bill eventually passed, Davis became a star. And her story, her personal story, resonated across this country." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
Following footage of cheering Davis supports, Shriver lobbed this ridiculous softball to the Texas abortion heroine: "Everybody says Wendy Davis is an overnight sensation. Does it irritate you that people call you an overnight sensation?" Davis replied: "I'm not an overnight sensation. I'm a Texan. And I'm a Texas success story. I am the epitome of hard work and optimism."