Newspapers use the term “pro-choice” but not “pro-life”

Editor Gilbert Millstein said that NBC news considers the phrase “pro-life” to “loaded” for inclusion in new stories, but added:

“If someone wanted to use “pro-choice,” I’d say that was fine.”

Robert Levy “The Code Words in the Battle over Abortion” Boston Globe November 21, 1980, P. 13

The vast majority of news outlets do not use the term “pro-life” and substitute “anti-abortion,” but call those in favor of abortion by the term they prefer- “pro-choice.”

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Media bias in covering abortion-related violence

Pro-life author Troy Clark says:

“Research commissioned by the National Conference of Catholic Bishops studied a four year period from 1992-1995. Three shooting incidents by anti-abortionists drew 1,110 stories in seven national print and network outlets. Yet, thirteen documented cases of pro-abortionist violent incidents attracted only 59 stories in the same news outlets.

Only four stories covered how Daniel Mahoney became the first pro-abortionist to be indicted for threatening to kill workers at a crisis pregnancy center under the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act.”

Troy Clark, Ph.D. Abortion Every 90 Seconds: The Whole Story (Kindle, 2015)

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Boston Globe reporter talks about media bias

This is from an old article, but media bias is still a problem for the pro-life movement.

Ethan Bronner, then a reporter for the Boston Globe, said:

“I think that when abortion opponents complain about a bias in the newsroom against their cause, they’re absolutely right.”

Bronner cited a story of his own on late-term abortions in which he had to fight a copy editor to retain such language as “destroying” the unborn by “crushing forming skulls and bones.”

Bronner said the editor told him, “As far as I’m concerned, until that thing is born, it is really no different from a kidney, it is part of the woman’s body.”

Dave Andrusko “An Insightful Look At Media Bias” NRL News July 12, 1990

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Most reporters are pro-choice, says former reporter

Alex S Jones, former New York Times reporter:

“Reporters as a group tend to be pro-choice, and pro-life advocates have long complained that these biases have skewed the way the story is reported.”

Alex Jones Losing the News: The Future of the News That Feeds Democracy (New York: Oxford University Press, 2009) 91

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NARAL director: The media is our best friend

Susanne Millsaps, executive director of the Utah Chapter of the pro-abortion group  NARAL:

“The media has been our best friend in this fight. They claim objectivity, but I know they’re all pro-choice.”

Quoted in the Washington Times, March 13, 1991. Also quoted in Voices for the Unborn (Feasterville, Pennsylvania), October 1991, page 4.

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Reporters lie about pro-life demonstration

Pro-lifer Rev. Richard Welch talked about a demonstration he attended:

“I went with my mother and a group of about 4000 pro-lifers and we staged a protest outside the Statehouse in Annapolis.… There were about 5 or 6 people there, who we would now characterize as feminist extremists, who were protesting in favor of abortion.

That night something would happen that I never forgot. On the evening news, 75% of the coverage went to those 4 or 5 proabortionists. All of the interviews were with them, and they even filmed them in such a way that the large group of pro-lifers in the background appeared to be with them.

The reporters outright lied: they said that there were as many proabortion demonstrators as there were pro-lifers. I presumed that what you saw on TV was the truth. It completely changed the way I viewed the American media… Since that time, I’ve had many experiences where the press purposely lied about the abortion issue. Many people don’t realize what they are getting when they watch the evening news – even on shows with allegedly high standards, such as “60 minutes,” where many of the segments are staged and set up.”

Rev. Richard Welch blood of the martyrs: The Journey of a Catholic Priest To the Rescue Movement (Gaithersburg, Maryland: Human Life International, 1994) 9 – 10

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Pro-abortion group- media turned to us for leadership

1984 interview with NARAL director Karen Mulhauser:

“… It really became clear, through our membership growth, through our budget, through the kinds of information that we were able to distribute, and through our organizing on the local level, that we were the biggest single issue group, so, more and more, media and legislators and other groups were turning to us for leadership. … We were able to play that role…”

Suzanne Staggenborg The Pro-Choice Movement: Organization and Activism In the Abortion Conflict (New York: Oxford University Press, 1991) 84

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Joe Scarborough on media bias and abortion

MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough said the following about the mainstream news media’s lack of coverage of the undercover videos that show Planned Parenthood officials talking about selling aborted baby body parts:

“You know, I got to say of all the areas where I think there is media bias, I think the greatest area is on this issue [abortion] I think most reporters do the best job they can do and they try to be as fair as possible.”

But when it come to the issue of abortion, there is the greatest built-in bias. And it is completely cultural bias, it is unintended.

[I]f the roles were reversed … there is a group on the right doing what Planned Parenthood has done on the Left and is described on the Left, there would be Justice Department — there would be indictments already going down.”

Joe Scarborough

T. BECKET ADAMS “MSNBC’s Scarborough: Of course media is biased towards supporting abortion” Washington Examiner 7/31/15

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Local paper misled readers about abortion protestors

Two abortion protesters went to a clinic to educate women entering.  They held graphic signs of aborted children. Whether you agree with this type of picketing or not (and I agree that a case can be made against it) it is notable that the local paper misled its readers as to the pair’s activities. From the article:

“It was erroneously implied that Dorothy and Judy are displaying graphic images to elementary school students located “right around the corner,” however the signs are on the 3300 block of 67th street and the school is at 6901 Nashville, over half a mile away….

The news coverage said:

Tony Thornton, CEO of Planned Parenthood, which is not affiliated with the abortion clinic, was also interviewed. He said he doesn’t care which side of the fence people are on, “I don’t think children should be subjected to this, the protesters have a target audience and it shouldn’t be the children.”….

Of course the target audience was not the children. But the newspaper apparently did not care about accuracy.

The news reporter finished her story by saying, “Some cities have ordinances against protesting on school grounds, but this isn’t the case in Lubbock.”…

Dorothy Boyett, has contacted the station demanding a retraction. “This broadcast left viewers with the impression that we were actually on school grounds” she told a representative of the station. “We have never gone to an elementary school and have no plans to do so. The signs save babies’ lives…”

Source: Dorothy Boyett “Lubbock prolifers accused of targeting children by local media” August 30, 2004

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“Any story I write about abortion instigates a flood of emails from angry anti-choicers, complaining about my so-called bias. Often they’re complaining about being called antichoice.”

Kristen Philipkoski, biotech reporter, Wired magazine

Gloria Feldt The War on Choice: The Right-Wing Attack on Women’s Rights and How to Fight Back (New York: Bantam Dell, 2004) 183

Of course. Because using the word “anti-choice” is not biased at all

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