Well, Savannah Guthrie probably shouldn’t wait by the phone for any Planned Parenthood or NARAL awards. In a move that qualifies as revolutionary among the liberal media, the NBC co-host acknowledged unborn babies as life.
During “Today” on July 31, Guthrie presented “a story that I am definitely interested in” as an expectant mom: the “secret lives” of babies. She introduced the segment by asking, “What are babies doing and actually learning in those nine months before meeting mom and dad, when they're in hotel uterus?” Citing one professor, Guthrie emphasized how “life in the womb” is “much busier in there than you might expect.” Continues after video.
Contrary to today’s media-talk, Guthrie refused to use the word “fetus” in her report. Instead, she explained how “more and more studies are now giving us a peak at their secret lives” – “their” referring to “babies.”
The one mention of “fetus” came from Dr. Bill Fifer, professor of psychiatry at Columbia University and an “expert on fetal and newborn learning.” And his mention only stressed the similarity between the unborn and born: "Everything that a newborn baby does, a fetus has pretty much done already," Fifer said.
As far as studies on the unborn, Guthrie highlighted certain findings, from how “little ones might recognize nursery rhymes even before they’re born,” to how babies react to their mothers’ emotions, voice – and eating habits.
In reaction, Co-host Matt Lauer joked about Guthrie’s pregnancy: “Little baby boy or baby girl here probably has a real hankering for junk food and sweets not based on your diet.” Guthrie concurred, “Mine it would be like, at 20 weeks your baby likes Indian food with beef jerky.
Even Co-host Al Roker contributed, “It's going to be a great baby that knows how to read a prompter.”
Guthrie also noted which senses develop when during pregnancy, including the “first major milestone” of touch at four months and ears forming at the halfway point.
The segment contrasted with abortion organizations and the media’s past coverage of unborn babies – especially in light of recent “fetal pain” studies. Last summer, MSNBC’s Alex Wagnerlamented that the fetal pain argument focused on taking away women’s rights, while New York Times's Erik Eckholm criticized the "theory" for influencing state laws.
In agreement with Wagner and Eckholm’s opposition, abortion-giant Planned Parenthood tweeted out “The secret strategy behind 20-week #abortion bans (that you're not supposed to realize)” andquoted Rep. Louise Slaughter (D-NY) on how “fetal pain claims ‘fly in the face of accepted science.’”
— Katie Yoder is Staff Writer, Joe and Betty Anderlik Fellow in Culture and Media at the Media Research Center. Follow Katie Yoder on Twitter.