Gloucester Daily Times Debate on Abortion (87), February 10, 1989

Media Bias on Abortion Exposed

I have to admit that it has been somewhat amusing to read the Times and other newspapers these past two weeks. Numerous articles have appeared concerning abortion, and all these “news” articles have been blatantly slanted in favor of legalized abortion as it now stands.

No surprise though — one recent poll of television, radio and print journalists revealed that 90 percent of them support the option of abortion.

But “the times, they are a ‘changin.’ ” After 16 years of the media constantly suppressing the grass-roots reality of the pro-life movement, the cauldron of public discontent is spilling over simultaneously in many different places. And thus the largely pro-abortion media is seeking to keep the lid on, hoping that it can sell the abortion ethos in spite of it all.

When more than 100,000 pro-lifers marched in Washington on January 22 (the 16th annual “March for Life”(, the national media focused on some 20 abortion advocates who protested in front of the U.S. Supreme Court. Locally, the Times focused on a dozen members of the National Organization for Women (NOW) at Grant Circle, and in surveying local women’s opinions on abortion, and only ones who opposes it. If the media ever wishes to put objective “news” criteria ahead of puffing its favorite positions, they will discover many stories which reflect the broad grass-roots strength of the pro-life movement. Most of us are committed Christians though, another constituency in the U.S. which the media shies away from.

There are many profound issues surrounding the pathos of human abortion, especially in terms of women’s dignity and choice. What is choice? We all cherish it, but it must be defined. Choice can only be exercised by those who are alive, thus choice is meant to nourish life — for women and their unborn equally. But abortion takes nascent human life and adds nothing to women’s dignity — it violates true choice, and it violates the courage of the human spirit.

The sad irony of such slanted media coverage is that one day historians will caricaturize it, but it is amusing to watch a largely pro-abortion media get desperate as it finally faces the pervasive grass-roots strength of the pro-life movement. For, eventually, the sentiments of the people will climb above the media’s censorial elitisms.

John C. Rankin, New England Christian Action Council, 11 Pleasant St.