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Hilarious Media Bias on March for Life

Shhhh. 300,000+ people chanted, yelled and sung their way into Washington D.C. but somehow snuck past the mainstream media without their notice. Congratulations to the ordinary ministers of the media!

Now, I could've missed it but after searching it seems to me that The New York Times completely ignored the throngs of people walking with signs towards the Capitol. I'm sure they would've been noticed if their signs mentioned Gitmo. MSNBC, according to their website, had no stories on the march. CBS News had nothing.

And even when some of the ordinary ministers of the media did notice, the results were comical.

Poor Rick Sanchez of CNN was confused. The poor dear couldn't figure out who was marching in...THE MARCH FOR LIFE!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sanchez reported, according to Newsbusters:

“It’s the 37th anniversary of the Supreme Court’s decision in Roe v. Wade case....both sides being represented today, but it does appear to me, as I look at these signs that – which side is represented the most....Do we know?”
And yet the Washington Post, no friend of the pro-life movement, reported:
"Few counter-demonstrators were visible along the route."
Were they at the same rally?

But Sanchez wasn't alone.

While a recent survey revealed that 6 out of ten young people are pro-life Newsweek's Krista Gesaman worried that the age of the pro-life marchers was so advanced she asked:
"Where are the young, vibrant women supporting their pro-life or pro-choice positions? Likely, they’re at home."

Has she been to the March for Life? I'm always amazed as to how many young people there are there. According to reports 550 young students were there from Catholic University of America alone as well as 370 from Notre Dame. And dozens of other colleges were represented similarly.

The AP, according to Gateway Pundit, said the March for Life was only three blocks long even though Michael Novak watched the march and said he watched for nearly three hours as the march just kept streaming up the street.

But we've long since quit depending on the media to get our message out. Over 49,000 blogs wrote about the March for Life. EWTN and other Catholic media covered the march extensively. Lifesite and LifeNews.com as always, do their admirable work.

So what I'm saying is that while some of us bloggers sometimes feel like our little blogs can't change the world. I would argue that it may be the only thing that can.

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42 comments:

Lorie said...

Fox News reported on the March For Life on Shepard Smith's news report on Friday. Also on Saturday's news, they interviewed Fr. Frank Pavone with the Priests For Life.

Nod said...

NBC Washington did report that "March For Life could snarl traffic Friday".

Whew! Glad they were Johnny-on-the-spot for that one!

Vincent Castilino said...

A perfect example to show how main stream media can "re-create" an opinion and then prove it to be 'real'.
Congratulations to you for your take on this subject. I'm using this as a spelendid example for Media bias in my communication session this week!
Castilino (Hyderabad, India)

Anonymous said...

I followed the March For Life by EWTN. It was a very huge crowd! An event to be covered by international media. In Brazil, no news about it...

Anonymous said...

CNN had nothing to say, nada, zilch, since it seems they were in Haiti -- the whole kit and kaboodle? Unlikely.

Anonymous said...

Just so there's no question, I qualify as pro-choice, however, I would not vote against a candidate because they were pro-life. So, just so there's now question where I'm coming from.

I'm sure that there is some level of the stated bias going on here, but I would argue that more of what is going on here is that news is no longer about an informed public, rather it is fundamentally about selling advertisement. And what sells is drama, and I don't know how things are in the news cycle in the U.S. right now as I'm currently living in the UK, but right now, here, everything is dominated by reports of Haiti. Not to be too cynical, and with all due respect to the people suffering there, nothing sells advert spots like a humanitarian crisis of biblical scale.

So I would suggest that on a slow news day, the march would have gotten some real coverage...and maybe a lot more coverage than what it did get.

As for bias, in the march up to the invasion of Iraq, hundreds of thousands of people across the U.S. marched and protested. I remember these marches getting less than 30 seconds on most news shows at the time. If there was a true liberal media bias, there should have been much more coverage at the time.

I would also like to take you to task for your over-simplified statistic of 6 out of 10 "young people" being pro-life. Can you please elaborate: source, what is the definition of a young person, is that voters, or non-voters. I know it is a blog, but good sourcing of such facts shouldn't suffer. Please add links to sources when possible.

JSullivan said...

Source was probably http://www.kofc.org/un/eb/en/news/polls/index.html which reports that a new poll shows 58% of those age 18-29 consider abortion "morally wrong."

Dave said...

Anonymous from 5:38 am:

Had it been a march of 10,000 pro-aborters with a few celebrities in the mix, it would have gotten prominent coverage from all the networks, with live coverage from CNN and MSNBC. You would have heard things like "strong support for a woman's right to choose", "filling the streets" and other such like. The media chooses to cover what fits their template.

Dawn said...

It was a phenomenal turn out! I don't have numbers, but I was there and like Mr. Novak..the people just kept coming. At the top of Capital Hill you could look down and it was just amazing, the amount of people that were behind us in the march. There will never be adequate coverage of the march in the mainstream media..Haiti earthquake or not, there has never been accurate reporting on the march in the msm. Perhaps the msm anchors will be part of the march when they get a little older and realize their very lives are in danger. With assisted suicide and euthansia being legalized around the world..it is only a matter of time before they realize this is about life not only from conception but also until natural death. When there imminent demise in front of them they may begin to wonder why they never marched before.

Anonymous said...

Don't be so obtuse Mr. Archbold. Don't imitate the blindness of the media. They're not making mistakes in their reporting, they're making the news. They're crafting the news.

What they're doing is promoting their view of how the march for life should be, rather than what it actually is.

They want young women to believe they would be alone if they attended this march, they want hesitant would-be marchers to believe they are not really the majority and that this is an endless battle so therefore not worth fighting. Making peace instead becomes an act of staying home.

Make no mistake. The media is deliberate.

Anonymous said...

I watched the march on EWTN (I sent my wife and 2 daughters since I couldn't make it) and switched over to FoxNews now and then. FoxNews was covering a dog in 6 to 8 inches of rushing water in the LA River.
I can't believe that this is news worthy of coverage with helicopters while the March for Life gets barely a nod from them.

Scarlett said...

This was the only article (column, really) that I came across that I thought gave an accurate portrayal of the March. The author seems impressed and a little worried by the strength of the pro-life movement (though he does seem to underestimate the number of people there - "tens of thousands" when I think we were many more).

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/01/23/AR2010012302400.html

LarryD said...

Anyone know how many marchers were at the West Coast March For Life? I'm pressed for time - otherwise I'd search for the # myself. Thanks!

Michael said...

Larry,

I saw estimates of 20-35K on jillstanek.com

Jess said...

I think I can explain what happened on Friday.

Clearly, 300,000 elderly pro-life ninjas slipped through D.C. completely unnoticed by the citizens and the media.

Obviously.

Emily said...

@Jess: YESSS!

Paul Zummo said...

I was there, and I didn't see a single counter-demonstrator, and I walked through a large segment of the crowd. That of course doesn't mean that there weren't any at all, but I noted the noticeable lack of counter-demonstrators to a friend, and he said there were much fewer than there had been in previous years.

matthew archbold said...

Jess,
I wish I thought of the ninja line. Really funny.

Lishi said...

I wish I could have gone :( Went every year for seven or eight and when I moved to NC I haven't been able to get back up there! It really is aggravating how little they cover it, but luckily we usually have lots of photographic evidence of the hundreds of thousands that come every year!! And it just keeps getting bigger!

Kevin J Jones said...

We hear these same complaints about media bias year after year.

Someone isn't doing their jobs. But who?

The MSM has a whole world to cover. The pro-life movement has leaders who are paid to promote the pro-life cause. If the MSM isn't hearing about us, I'd say the latter group is at fault.

Who was running the PR for the March? We can't just drop off a press release and assume we merit coverage, we have to fight for it and befriend journalists and producers. Yes, even some of the hostile ones!

Maurisa said...

My 17 year old daughter and 14 year old son marched and saw only two counter-protestors. That is twice as many as they saw last year.

I know a group of very young nuns, The Sister Servants of the Lord and the Virgin of Matara, who took 500 young people with them to the Youth Rally and March. Sister Servant of the Cross excitedly relayed to me the numbers of young people turned away from the rally due to overflowing capacity and of the large number of young people waiting in long lines for confession prior to the Mass.

Just a bit of anecdotal evidence showing the potential positive power the March has for young folks.

Anonymous said...

to Anny 5:14. You are correct when you say the media wants drama. Had a fight broken out, we'd have tons of coverage. Had counter-protesters rumbled with us, we would have made the news too. This was the most peaceful gathering of people I've ever seen. Even when we were shoulder to shoulder and no one could move, people were patient. No news there. Sad.
Susan

Julie Robison said...

Hillsdale College brought 91 students :) http://thehillsdaleforum.blogspot.com/2010/01/yay-march-for-life.html

Anonymous said...

I was there at the steps of the Supreme Court around 1 PM. Saw a CNN SUV, and a couple of guys. They were there before much was happening. The March usually starts walking at 1 PM, didn't start until 2:30. Typically the liberal press leaves early, and doesn't bother to walk down to the rally on the Mall. They show up only to take pictures of the few pro-aborts standing at the steps with their signs. They angle the camera to make pro-aborts loom in the picture, typically there's only 3 or 4 actually there!

Every year there is the same large-ish woman with a pro-abort sign, i forget her name, she stands there calmly every year with a friend or two at the steps. She's not unfriendly. This year there was a much larger group with their blue signs chanting against the din of the pro-life rock band. Maybe about 20 of em?

The lack of true coverage results in one odd occurence: when the pro-aborts do show up, their expressions belie their reaction as they are overwhelmed by the sheer number of endless streams of people. These faces I see never show up again - only this one large-ish woman consistently. These others look shocked and shaken. No clue that the real world feels this way about abortion. I wonder if they go home reconsidering the pro-abort position.

One year I remember a shot of Eleanor Holmes Norton, the representative for DC, showing up on the news with maybe 3 or 4 others. Norton and the group held up their pro-abort signs, shaking a fist in time with their chanting. Oddly, it was taken at NIGHTfall, long after the March was over. Most of the pro-aborts avoid showing up in the midst of all the action. I wonder that those showing up arrive thinking they will make a difference in the midst of the action, but end up going home with their beliefs shaken.

I also wonder what the Capitol Police think - they stand all along the route, some on motorcycles and bikes, some in cars. Clearly they are prepared for a large crowd and must be amazed if they have never worked that day before. Truth is right in their face.

The marchers are calm, without number, from every walk of life and age.

Those of you who have never been, must go at least once. The full visual effect of the Marchers is staggering, and never comes across in puny photos or TV coverage.

~Tina in Ashburn

Anonymous said...

Does anyone know if Jenkins from Notre Dame showed up to the Pro Life March? Only saw an article in the "South Bend Tribune."

Liam Ronan said...

I might characterize the media's bias many ways, but 'hilarious' would not be one.

Does a tree make a noise when it topples in the forest and there is no one there to hear it?

Does the essence of a moral movement properly resonate in the collective public consciousness when no one is there to honestly cover it?

Anonymous said...

I'm sure the march would've been reported by the Twin Cities media, but we had a football game, ya know. Nothing but Vikings blather all last week. Almost makes me glad they lost. At least we can now all cry in our beers and then get back to real news.

Cynical Sometimes Sports Fan

Anonymous said...

I was at the March for Life, our group of 55 was in the later half of the march yet when we reached the top of the hill still as far as you could see people were coming packed together covering the entire street. Even the the Washington Police told me they have never seen such a huge number of people turn out, even a pro-choice woman on a local stations said she was not intimidated by the massive numbers coming out year after year after year. numbers are always estimated low because they only count those registered with the March for life organization. I always take a bus load and have NEVER registered with March for life. why doesn't someone just take EWTN footage and count?? I have always wondered that. Anyway the march began at 1pm and when I got to the subway at 5:30pm there were still people coming as far as I could see. I personally did not see one pro-choice person, but one would have been hard to see in the crowd of pro-lifers. The march has NEVER been covered with or without natural disaster and it was the first trip that I went and saw and realize I was being LIED to by main stream media that I altogether stopped watching them because if they would totally manipulate this what else are they or are they not telling me?? and you can look it up anywhere you want, the March for Life is the LARGEST demonstration in WAshington DC EVERY YEAR! Your right the media loves drama they want some nuts person to set a bomb or kill someone--but true pro-lifers DO NOT do those things, so we will continue to march each year for those who have no voice and for those who REFUSE TO SEE.

Anonymous said...

This is another example to prove why we should never trust the media. The world would be a better place if we all used our own reason to judge absolutely everything we hear. The pro-life movement isn't the only thing affected by the bias of the news media, but it's certainly one of the most affected.

Vince C said...

I looked prettty diligently the day of and the day after the event for some kind of nes coverage. Except for religion-based news sites, a only found a short blurb about it buried at the bottom of the cnn page. It cited no crowd estimates, and the sole photo acoompanying the news item was one of the counter-protesters. It sounds like the photo described above--with the angle or lens used making the subjects look huge in comparison to the background.

Anonymous said...

Makes me feel smart.

Kevin LeDuc said...

Has anyone ever thought about marching on the media headquarters instead of Washington? I think if 300,000 showed up at CBS News they might notice.

Anonymous said...

EWTN did a great job. The parade was a resounding success despite the lack of media coverage. Feel invigorated and will definitely devote more time and resources to Pro-Life groups.

jayeverett said...

Well, what would you expect from a false media???
Many events,including sports,are reported by the media without anyone actually being present for the event. I believe they call it putting a spin on the real story but it is just another lie by people seeking celebrity status as a reporter of the news. May God forgive them....

Anonymous said...

I had a realization. As someone who wishes to see abortion remain legal, I truly wonder if the lack of media coverage lulls the non-pro-life majority in America into thinking that there pro-life is weak. So perhaps everyone here might pray for media coverage to remain slight. Reading this blog (and especially the responses) makes me feel more inclined to lobby my representatives in congress to keep abortion legal, regulated, and legitimate.

I also wonder, where are the groups in which "pro-choice" and "pro-life" collaborate? There must be many people like myself who don't believe an absolute ban would work or make any sense but would like to see the numbers of abortions reduced by means of contraception, adoption, etc. There must exist a middle ground, and the fact that I never seem to see this idea put forward by "pro-life" is one of my biggest deterents from finding any affinity for this movement. For all they are maligned by the pro-life movement, Planned Parenthood also teach natural family planning (I took the class from them with my partner). Yet all I ever hear from the pro-life camp is the evils of PP.

And I still stand by my statement earlier (Anonymous January 25, 5:38 am): the main bias of the mainstream media (particularly TV) is the bias of corporate self-preservation. If it sells advertisement, it gets coverage and air time. If it sells lots of advertisement, it gets lots of air time.

PattyinCT said...

Yeah, but were we ninjas or "Thieves in the Night", please ignore that it was 1 in the afternoon:) Heheheh
Who cares what the media talks about anymore? They're bound to be bought out by Uncle Sam press sooner or later anyway, and we see through all the political activity of US citizens that grassroots still has the most effect.
My husband and I went on the March with our four children this year (we were the ones with the bike carts:), and I couldn't believe how many people there were! I can't wait to go back, and every year I tell my fellow pro-lifers "I hope I don't have to see you here this day next year." One day, with our prayers and sacrifices, we'll end the scourge of abortion.

Mary L. Harrell said...

Your comment on us little bloggers changing the world was so encouraging (and spot-on). It's the community of conservative blog readers that keeps growing, while network news companies shrink. Thank you for your work.

Anonymous said...

ok to the one who wants "middle ground" on abortion. it is scientifically simple, the unborn is a living human person, anything that destroys that is killing a living human person. It does not matter the circumstances it was created during, the life it may or may not be born into, etc. it is a living human person and we can't legalizing killing living human beings just becuase the inconviniance us. and there is NO middle ground to when we should be allowed to kill a living human person or when we shoudln't.

Linda said...

Anonymous 6:26PM...Spot on, good job!

Not said...

How do you make a quarter million people disappear? Hand them pro-life placards and send them to D.C. on January 22nd! It's CRAZY the way the March is ignored :-p

Steve Sanborn said...

See www.thineeyes.org for the video report on the M4L Media Malpractice.

Thanks,

Steve Sanborn

Anonymous said...

In response to the comment above, myself, along with close to 400 other Notre Dame students and faculty, including Fr. John Jenkins, made the trip to D.C. for the March for Life. It was the largest group we have taken.

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