Tuesday, October 21, 2014

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Analysis: Pro-Abortion Rights Bias in SF Chronicle Coverage of Catholic Universities

LMUGet Religion recently published an analysis of the bias in a recent San Francisco Chronicle story—surrounding the decisions of two California Catholic universities to limit abortion coverage for employees—which gives precedence to sources with pro-abortion rights views.

Such bias in the media is fairly commonplace, but the Chronicle “makes a noble effort at perfecting the craft,” according to the analysis. Get Religion observes that the news report is biased “toward the abortion-rights point of view and leans heavily in that side’s favor.” An example of this can be seen by comparing the amount of quotations utilized from each side of the issue.

The Chronicle provides one brief quote to explain the universities’ decision to drop coverage of elective abortion. Four quotes are provided from sources in favor of keeping elective abortion covered. Two professors at Santa Clara University and Loyola Marymount who oppose the decision are quoted, as well as the chief counsel for Planned Parenthood in California. The analysis points out that 195 words of pro-abortion rights opinion finish the article, while only 69 total words of background and quotes were given from the pro-life Life Legal Defense Foundation.

The Cardinal Newman Society recently reported on a California health care agency’s “in-depth analysis of the issues surrounding coverage for abortion services under California law.” If the California Department of Managed Health Care decides that elective abortions fall under “medically necessary procedures,” then religious non-profits will be compelled to cover them in their employee health insurance plans. President Patrick Reilly of the Newman Society stated that “Catholics must look inward… for solutions to the threats against religious freedom.”

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