Catching up on an item from last Thursday’s CBS Evening News, after recounting for the second time the case of Philadelphia abortion Dr. Kermit Gosnell’s horrific practice, anchor Katie Couric introduced a piece devoted to upcoming political fights over abortion. During the report, opponents of abortion were twice labeled as "conservatives," while the word "liberals" was never used to refer to advocates of abortion rights. The report also finally mentioned - briefly - the March for Life pro-life rally from earlier in the week in the nation’s capital.
As the report reiterated the case of Dr. Gosnell, the argument on both sides of the debate was presented as to which side is bolstered by his callous activities. Couric: "Criminal abuse like this is extremely rare, but it's not stopping both sides in the abortion debate from using the case to re-energize supporters."
After correspondent Elaine Quijano made the case on both sides, ideological labels soon came. Correspondent Nancy Cordes: "Republicans are now back in power in the House at least, after a walk in the desert, and they have certain constituencies that they need to satisfy. One of those constituencies is the conservative right wing of the party for whom abortion is a very important issue all the time."
Several media outlets are trumpeting a recent study out of Denmark that asserts that having an abortion does not increase the risk of mental health problems for women. Yet there are serious problems with the study that major media are not reporting:
1. The Danish study flies in the face of over 30 professional studies just in the past five years that conclude that there is a serious negative mental health impact on women who have abortions. The list of those studies is at the site of the Elliot Institute, TheUnChoice.com. Not one major media outlet reported this.
Once again the “news” media yawned as tens of thousands of Americans clogged the streets of Washington on January 24 for the annual “March for Life.” This year’s protests should have gained more attention since it came in the wake of absolutely vomit-inducing news from Philadelphia that an abortionist named Kermit Gosnell was charged by the District Attorney with a series of murders.
In a horrific 261-page report, Gosnell is accused of delivering seven babies alive and then killing them with scissors. He also allowed a woman who had survived 20 years in a refugee camp in Nepal to be incompetently overmedicated on Demerol and die at his clinic.
So much for abortion being “safe, legal, and rare.”
Mollie Ziegler Hemingway has an interesting post at Get Religion examining some of the mainstream media coverage surrounding the 38th.
As usual, some of the accounts were found lacking, but Ziegler Hemingway did praised one newspaper for providing not just "a lot of data and explanation of the march" but that touched on "such topics as grace and redemption."
None of the broadcast news programs from Monday evening and Tuesday morning covered the 2011 "March for Life" in Washington, DC, a pro-life rally that reportedly drew at least tens of thousands of attendees.
Neither NBC, ABC, nor CBS gave any coverage Monday to the march on their respective evening news programs; none of the networks covered the story Tuesday morning. The New York Times did not cover the story, as the MRC's blog "Times Watch" documented. The Washington Post, however, did provide a fair account of the rally in its Metro section.
Although the Post did report "thousands" attended the march, good faith estimates are easily in the tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands. The Post reported that attendees were "encouraged by recent federal and state GOP wins and hopeful about proposed measures that would further tighten bans on federal funding for abortions."
CNN's 7 pm Eastern hour program John King USA was the only program on Monday and the following morning on Tuesday that mentioned the March for Life in Washington, DC. Anchor John King devoted only 11 seconds to the pro-life demonstration, and omitted crowd numbers and footage from the March. CNN.com's write-up on the annual event downplayed the number of attendees as merely in the "thousands."
King led his evening program with a brief about an Illinois court ruling that former Obama aide Rahm Emanuel was ineligible to run for Chicago mayor. After playing a sound bite from Emanuel, the CNN personality then gave moved on to the March for Life, and added illegal immigration to it as an "emotional issue:"
On Sunday evening, an event in Washington preemptively made mincemeat of the usual press claims that "thousands" would participate in the next day's March for Life.
The next day at the Washington Post, Michelle Boorstein and Ben Pershing followed form ("Thousands of abortion opponents rally in march on Mall"), but did make an interesting, seemingly reluctant observation: "Some attending the events Monday said that more young people appeared to be participating than in previous years."
The Associated Press's coverage of the march added a new twist. Its afternoon report on the rally made no attempt at a crowd size estimate. The New York Times, as far as I can tell, did no story of its own.
The Sunday evening event noted earlier was a pro-life vigil Mass, where the crowd size was relatively verifiable. The homilist, Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, took the opportunity to point a finger at the establishment press, and to take note of the youthful energy driving the pro-life movement:
Has our financial mess brought us to the brink of getting beyond the culture wars?
It's a question that we might just see play out on Capitol Hill in the coming months, as the new political majority seeks to make the late pro-life congressman Henry Hyde proud, by prohibiting taxpayer funding of abortion and de-funding Planned Parenthood.
"Hell no," now-Speaker John Boehner said, when he was in the minority, to the comprehensive, conscience-offending health-care legislation that Congress and the White House insisted upon last year. So now that he's Speaker, the first big vote under his watch was to repeal the president's signature piece of legislation.
Let's give the "climate of hate" rhetoric a rest for a moment. It's time to talk about the climate of death, in which the abortion industry thrives unchecked. Dehumanizing rhetoric, rationalizing language and a callous disregard for life have numbed America to its monstrous consequences. Consider the Philadelphia Horror.
In the City of Brotherly Love, hundreds of babies were murdered by a scissors-wielding monster over four decades. Whistleblowers informed public officials at all levels of the wanton killings of innocent life. But a parade of government health bureaucrats and advocates protecting the abortion racket looked the other way — until, that is, a Philadelphia grand jury finally exposed the infanticide factory run by abortionist Kermit B. Gosnell, M.D., and a crew of unlicensed, untrained butchers masquerading as noble providers of women's "choice." Prosecutors charged Gosnell and his death squad with multiple counts of murder, infanticide, conspiracy, abuse of corpse, theft and other offenses.
In an Associated Press report by Patrick Walters yesterday afternoon, the following two reasons were offered as to why the Philadelphia abortion "clinic" operated by Dr. Kermit Gosnell, who was arrested and charged earlier this week "with murdering seven babies and one woman who went to him for an abortion," had not been inspected since 1993:
Democratic former Governor Ed Rendell, who left office on Tuesday after eight years as Keystone State chief executive, claimed that officials at the Pennsylvania Department of Health (DOH), in the AP's words, "didn't think its authority extended to abortion clinics."
The grand jury indictment of Dr. Gosnell says that DOH "decided, for political reasons, to stop inspecting abortion clinics at all."
According to the indictment handed down against Gosnell, the hard-to-handle first explanation (If DOH doesn't have jurisdiction, who does? No one?) is a subset of the second, i.e., the opinion on lack of jurisdiction was part of a longer-term effort to come up with reasons to avoid inspections. Walters never told readers that, and in doing so largely let Rendell off the hook for the fact that almost half of 17-years involved -- the longest time period of any Keystone State governor contemporaneous with the non-inspection regime of non-inspection occurred on his watch (the others: Bob Casey, prolife Democrat, somewhere between 13 months and two years; Tom Ridge, prochoice Republican, 6-3/4 years; Mark Schweiker, prolife Republican, 15 months). Walters also saved the grand jury's overall "political reasons" assessment for Paragraphs 9-12 after giving Rendell's explanation paragraphs 1-4.
Bob Casey? Yes, though the grand jury for some reason didn't recognize it.
During his (in)famous "Psycho Talk" segment of his Thursday evening MSNBC show, host Ed Schultz played the clip of Rick Santorum's interview with Terry Jeffrey of CNSNews.com where Santorum challenged President Obama's plea of ignorance on the question of when a person receives the right to life. Schultz, himself a loud-mouth liberal radio talk show host prone to crazy talk branded Santorum's comments as "psycho talk."
Rick Santorum said the following about Barack Obama and abortion in the interview: "The question is--and this is what Barack Obama didn't want to answer--is that human life a person under the Constitution? And Barack Obama says no. Well, if that person, human life, is not a person, then I find it almost remarkable for a black man to say, no, we are going to decide who are people and who are not people."
He later followed up his comments with a statement comparing abortion with slavery, and said he is "disappointed that President Obama, who rightfully fights for civil rights, refuses to recognize the civil rights of the unborn in this country."
Liberal columnist Michael Kinsley made light of the Catholic Church's process of recognizing a saint in a Wednesday column for the Los Angeles Times, while simultaneously blasting the Church's opposition to embryonic stem cell research, claiming that the religion was a "main impediment" in developing a cure for Parkinson's disease.
Editor's Note: In the wake of the CNSNews.com interview with potential presidential hopeful Rick Santorum and his criticism of President Obama’s support for abortion rights, numerous major news outlets including Politico, National Journal, the Wall Street Journal, and the Daily Beast have accused Santorum of playing the “race card” while discussing human life and personhood protected by the Constitution.
Santorum said this: "The question is, and this is what Barack Obama didn’t want to answer: Is that human life a person under the Constitution? And Barack Obama says no. Well, if that human life is not a person, then I find it almost remarkable for a black man to say ‘now we are going to decide who are people and who are not people.’”
What follows is NewsBusters publisher/Media Research Center founder Brent Bozell's reaction to the media attacks on the former Pennsylvania senator.
This has nothing to do with a supposed "race card." This isn’t even just about Rick Santorum. The media whirlwind whipped up on these accusations are nothing more than the continuation of an ugly and dishonest attempt to distort, delegitimize and damn conservative principles and conservative leaders.
Anyone who actually watched this interview can see that Santorum paralleled what many pro-life leaders have compared in the past. Just ask Dr. Alveda King, niece of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Day Gardner, Rev. Childress or any number of other black leaders who have also called abortion the civil rights issue of our day.
"My comprehension of the English language can't adequately describe the barbaric nature of Dr. [Kermit] Gosnell."
That's how a horrified District Attorney Seth Williams (D) described the abortionist arrested yesterday for murdering newborn babies in his squalid Philadelphia clinic. It appears Gosnell's clinic had been ignored by medical regulators for years as the abortionist performed illegal late-term abortions as well as killed newborn babies by snipping their spinal cords with scissors.
As my colleague Brad Wilmouth noted, CBS "Evening News" ran a story by correspondent Elaine Quijano on the arrest and grand jury investigation into Gosnell's clinic last night. Yet this morning, neither CBS's "Early Show" nor its higher-rated competitors ABC's "Good Morning America" or NBC's "Today" aired so much as an anchor briefing on their January 20 editions.
Producers for network early morning show newscasts apparently weren't as squeamish. ABC's "World News Now" ran a story shortly after 3 a.m. EST and CBS "Morning News" aired the Quijano report shortly after 4 a.m.
On Wednesday the CBS Evening News gave attention to the story of an abortion doctor in Philadelphia whose practices were so horrific that he is being charged with murder. Anchor Katie Couric set up the piece:
Now, this next story comes with a strong word of caution. The details are gruesome. You won't want young children to watch. A Philadelphia doctor who made millions performing late-term abortions was charged today with murder. The D.A. says the doctor killed seven babies after they were delivered alive.
Below is a complete transcript of the report, filed by correspondent Elaine Quijano, from the Wednesday, January 19, CBS Evening News :
I finished Part 1 last week informing you that in just a single year, from 2008-09, Planned Parenthood received $363.2 million in government grants and contracts, a $13.6 million increase from the previous year, which resulted in 324,800 abortions.
I then left you to ponder this question, which Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, asked more than a year ago: "Why should people of conscience be forced to participate in any aspect of abortion?"
That is exactly where Washington is leading us unless this 112th Congress detours from forcing pro-life citizens to pay for abortions via Obamacare or the passing of some legislation like the Freedom of Choice Act.
Thank God the pro-life cavalry has come to Washington. But it needs our help to rally our representatives.
"It is with a heavy heart that I write to you about the senseless violence in Tucson today," EMILY's List president Stephanie Schriock wrote as so many of us turned to Arizona and prayed for Rep. Gabrielle Giffords' survival. We prayed for Giffords, her family, and those who were tragically affected by the civic gathering that ended in bloodshed. We gave thanks to God for brave men and women who kept the attack from being even bloodier.
When Giffords was shot in Tucson, it was a jarring confrontation with evil. A child, Christina Green, who was born on 9/11 and was interested in government at a young age, was murdered, as was a federal judge, John Roll, coming from Saturday-morning Mass.
You know their stories by now.
There were prayers. But there was also a lot of noise. Fingers pointed. Accusations made.
My wife, Gena, and I mourn with the rest of the nation over the murder and maiming of innocent citizens and lawmakers in Arizona this past Saturday morning. We, too, pray for the victims and survivors. It makes us even more passionate in our fight for human life and reminding the world that from the womb to the tomb, human life is precious and should be prized.
Last week, two questions dominated the political landscape regarding Obamacare. First, will the new 112th Congress repeal it? And secondly, if Obamacare didn't offer advanced directives for end-of-life planning (aka "death panels"), then why did the Obama administration just repeal a Medicare regulation and reference for it covered under the new health care law?
Those are both great questions. But the one question being overlooked by too many is this one: If the 112th Congress fails to repeal Obamacare, will it include "baby death panels" in the future? In other words, will taxpayer money be used to provide for abortions under the new universal health care law?
MTV aims to make a profit airing a show about a pregnant teen deciding to abort her baby, and the best media writers can muster is to call it a “sensitive issue.”
An MTV Special to be aired at 11:30pm Dec. 28, “No Easy Decision” is a half-hour program that follows a teen mom’s tragic decision to abort her child. The media coverage leading up to the program’s air date has merely glossed over the murderous reality that is abortion, and used terms like “sensitive issue,” “wrenching decision” and “ostracized party guest” to downplay the severity of infanticide.
Ho, ho, ho! Just in time for Christmas, the American Civil Liberties Union has launched a new salvo against people of faith. Even as billions around the world celebrate the birth of Christ, joyless, abortion-obsessed secularists never take a holiday.
On Wednesday, the ACLU sent a letter to federal health officials urging the government to force Catholic hospitals in the U.S. to perform abortions in violation of their core moral commitment to protecting the lives of the unborn. They're counting on sympathetic Obama rationing czar Donald Berwick — a recess appointee whose radical views on wealth and health redistribution were never vetted by Congress — to dictate which religious principles hospital operators can and cannot follow.
Liberals have claimed that conservatives wage a war on "science," but when it comes to social liberalism, they are often at odds with scientific reality. For example, they will define a woman as "He" and a man as "She" if the person in question simply decides that's how they want to be addressed. Or, in Thursday's Washington Post, the words "reproductive care" are used, without quotes, to describe anti-reproductive actions like abortion and contraception. The ACLU is waging war on Catholic-owned hospitals, and Rob Stein began their publicity drive with this paragraph:
The American Civil Liberties Union on Wednesday asked federal health officials to ensure that Catholic hospitals provide emergency reproductive care to pregnant women, saying the refusal by religiously affiliated hospitals to provide abortion and other services was becoming an increasing problem.
This matches the media template, in which abortion itself is never a social "problem" -- only the lack of "access" to it is a problem. There are no "liberals" in this piece, only "reproductive health advocates," which again is a factually inaccurate adjective:
As more hospitals have been taken over by Catholic hospital chains in recent years, reproductive health advocates have become increasingly concerned that fewer medical centers will provide abortion, contraception and other reproductive services.
Seems to me Time used the most unflattering screen shot of Jackson it could find from her announcement video, and it also painted an unpleasant portrait of her overall. Read Time's blurb on Jackson after the jump....
ABC's Dan Harris gave a slanted report on Wednesday's GMA about the Catholic bishop of Phoenix, Arizona stripping a hospital there of its Catholic status: "This is a story that involves a nun, described as saintly; a Catholic bishop; a world-class hospital; and a controversy now being discussed across the country." Harris unnecessarily introduced the priestly sex scandal into his report, and played a sound bite from a doctor who thought religion should be kept out of medical decisions involving crisis pregnancies.
The correspondent began his report with his "saintly" superlative for Sister Margaret McBride, and continued by giving a brief summary of the controversy she is involved in, throwing in his line about the sex scandal in the process:
The latest meme among the legions of lefty Fox-haters is that FNC "distorted" or "skewed" the ObamaCare debate by instructing employees to call the "public option" the "government option" or some variation of that. The horror!
Of course none of the Fox-haters uttered a word of criticism when National Public Radio officially instructed employees to drop the "pro-life" and "pro-choice" labels in favor of "abortion rights opponent" and "abortion rights advocate," labels that clearly frame the debate favorably for the pro-choice position (who wants someone's rights denied them, after all?).
During Tuesday's 1PM ET hour on MSNBC, anchor Andrea Mitchell highlighted a new poll from the left-wing pro-abortion group Planned Parenthood that claimed that voters do not trust Sarah Palin on so-called "women's health issues": "A new poll suggests that she may have a tough time getting voters to trust her on at least one front....54% of registered voters do not trust Palin on those issues."
Later in the same segment, deciding to get in a few more shots at Palin, Mitchell claimed that the former Alaska governor's new book, 'America by Heart,' had not appeared on the New York Times best seller list: "All of a sudden, Sarah Palin, with a new book, is not on the list....unless there was something wrong with my edition of The New York Times, she's not on it, with a book that's just come out." Well, apparently there was something wrong with the Times' Sunday December 5 best seller list, because its December 12 list had Palin's book debuting at number two behind George W. Bush's 'Decision Points.'
The Christmas season is "a tough time for supporters of abortion rights who have just as much excitement and take just as much joy in expecting a baby in their family as does everyone else, but end up feeling defensive and grumpy about the baby Jesus being hijacked for political gain."
That's how former Catholics for Choice president Frances Kissling lamented the enthusiastic response of pro-life activists to a church ad campaign in the United Kingdom that shows a sonogram with the unborn baby sporting a halo. "He's on His Way," reads the accompanying tag line. "Christmas starts with Christ," continues the caption in smaller print at the bottom of the advertisement. [image of the ad included after page break]
At the time, Carhart refused to disclose where he would open his D.C.-area clinic, but said that it would be in a jurisdiction that was favorable to abortion.
"The laws are more favorable in these other jurisdictions, and we're going to do the maximum the law allows," Carhart told the Washington Post.
Stein filed an 8-paragraph follow-up story in today's Post, having received new information from an abortion clinic official that Carhart would be joining that clinic, based in Germantown, Md. That follow-up story, however, was buried at the bottom of page 10 of the paper's December 1 Metro section.
Well, no wonder the true intentions of the couple putting their preborn baby's life up for a vote were difficult to decipher. Turns out Pete Arnold is pro-life and his wife Alisha is pro-abortion.
(Baby boy "Wiggles" is pictured above, waving at the camera at his 17-wk check-up earlier this week.)
First, his side of the story. CNN reported yesterday Pete admitted "they never intended to terminate the pregnancy":
Arnold... bought the domain name "birthornot.com" before wife Alisha became pregnant about 4 months ago... adding that his wife is pro-choice but agreed that abortion was not on the table for them....
Arnold told CNN... the site was not a hoax even though there were never any plans to accept the vote results if abortion won.
"A lot of people elect representatives based on this issue alone, yet nothing happens, nothing comes of it, nothing changes." he said, adding that the couple called the baby "Baby Wiggles" to give people more to think about.
"My intent is not to deceive people, but at the same point, I do want people to talk about this. This seemed like a pretty good way to further the discussion, because people don't ever seem to want to talk about it for real if there's no name on it, no Baby Wiggles," he said.
Meanwhile KSTP reported late Monday night that Alisha had been fired from her job at software firm TempWorks as "a grave threat to the reputation of the company." TempWorks went further, requesting employees to defriend Alisha on Facebook.