Is media bias to blame for lack of Gosnell coverage? Or something far more banal?
By Paul Farhi
Published: April 14
The trial of Philadelphia doctor Kermit Gosnell would seem to have all the elements of a spectacular news story: shocking allegations, horrifying visuals, sympathetic victims.
Yet until late last week, much of the national media was silent as testimony about Gosnell’s alleged “house of horrors” abortion clinic rolled out. Much of the media attention outside Philadelphia, in fact, centered on how little media attention the story was receiving outside Philadelphia.
The charge of liberal media bias is perhaps undercut by the fact that a number of conservative media outlets — and conservative leaders — overlooked the story, too, until a flood of tweets and commentaries about it began late last week.
The Weekly Standard and the National Review, two leading conservative magazines, for example, hadn’t published anything on the trial, according to a search of the Nexis database. The New York Post’s conservative editorial board has written one commentary — an editorial lamenting the lack of coverage, which, although it doesn’t mention it, includes its own paper. The Washington Times has published five staff-written articles and guest commentaries on the matter, all focusing on the absence of press coverage.
Heh! The Gosnell trial opening statements started on 3/18/2013. I bothered to do a search on the Weekly Standard’s site. It was sophisticated … I typed the word “gosnell” into the search box. The Weekly Standard did articles on: April 15 (the day after this WashPost article); for the April 22 magazine issue (which was, obviously, e-published before the magazine cover date); April 11; April 10; April 3; Feb. 7, 2011; three articles in January, 2011. Calling out National Review is an apples-and-oranges smokescreen. National Review is a commentary publication; the NYT, WashPost, ABC, CBS, CNN, NBC, et al claim to be news organizations. Edit: The Weekly Standard was an appropriate comparison, but this WashPost article got it wrong. Better choices instead of National Review would be Drudge, Breitbart or PJMedia, but those have been all over the Gosnell story, contradicting the WashPost’s flimsy moral equivalency narrative-smokescreen. (end of edit)
Martin Baron, The Post’s executive editor, offers a more mundane rationale for the newspaper’s lack of coverage: He wasn’t aware of the story until Thursday night, when readers began e-mailing him about it. “I wish I could be conscious of all stories everywhere, but I can’t be,” he said. “Nor can any of us.”
Seriously? One of the biggest murder–malpractice–medical-facility-filth–regulatory-negligence-and-cronyism stories in years or decades and the WashPost editor is clueless? The editor of a national newspaper is unaware of one of a huge story less than 150 miles from DC, practically in his backyard?! NOT! CREDIBLE!!!
A newspaper editor knows what stories his people are covering. Either he’s lying, crudely, or the WashPost had literally no one covering this story and the editor is incredibly ignorant. IMO, both!