Media bend over for same-sex marriage

A Pew Research Center study found that media coverage is heavily skewed (by 5-t0-1) in favor of same sex marriage marriage--to no one's surprise except, of course, much of the media. In a fight of bashfulness, some media ignored the news.

The Pew Researchers say the unbalanced coverage has "provided a strong sense of momentum towards legalizing same-sex marriage." Imagine that.

Yet, those who support gay marriage try to explain away the bias by saying that the coverage only reflects growing public acceptance. Or perhaps, it's a chicken or egg question: Is public acceptance the result of the constant stream of biased gay flagstories favorable to same-sex marriage? In other words, does the "growing" acceptance follow the perception created by the media that legal same-sex marriage is inevitable?  Has the heavily biased coverage discouraged opponents from keeping up the fight?

Then there are the comments following the posting of the story: The news coverage is slanted because the opposition arguments are meritless, so why report them?  Or:  the opposition has so few defensible arguments that there's little or nothing for the media to report, even if they wanted to.

I would note that the study came out of the center's Project for Excellence in Journalism. This is a study about how the media have handled one of the nation's most contentious issues. In this light, the media should be more than embarrassed or even ashamed.

I say that as someone who has been in the business since the mid-1960s, someone who has watched the deterioration of what is supposed to be a profession whose holy grail is the objective, balanced reporting of the news without the introduction, openly or covertly, of the practitioner's bias into the story. Maybe most of my journalism colleagues still give lip-service to the idea, but judging by what they do rather than what they say, I worry for the profession and fear for our republic.

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    Your imagery is certainly improving as the media "bending over" on gay marriage attests

  • In reply to Robert Lowther:

    But he's still behind the times.

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