Last week, we described CNSNews' lack of balance in its news articles, as evidenced by its making only token efforts to obtain the other side of a story, then not bothering to follow up tell the full story. Turns out the problem is worse than we thought.
One of the cases we cited was a Nov. 20 article by Nathan Burchfiel quoting two "pro-life activists" claiming that "high abortion rates among black women" are linked to "high levels of 'hopelessness' in African-American communities across the United States." Burchfiel's attempt to "fairly present" the other side was limited to stating that "A spokesman for the Alan Guttmacher Institute did not respond to requests for comment by press time" and pulling statistics off the group's website. We have since heard from the Guttmacher Institute's Rebecca Wind, who told us:
As the primary media contact for the Guttmacher Institute, I want to set the record straight. I sent the attached letter to the editor of CNS News last week, along with the attached e-mail exchange, which clearly shows that we not only responded to requests for comment by press time, but that we set up an interview for Mr. Burchfiel with our director for domestic research, which was cancelled by the reporter due to a family emergency. I have received no response back from the editors of CNS News or Mr. Burchfiel himself at this time.
Burchfiel postponed an interview with a Guttmacher rep, then wrote the story anyway and claimed that "A spokesman for the Alan Guttmacher Institute did not respond to requests for comment by press time"? That manages to be even more egregious than the lack of balance itself.