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Friday, April 19, 2019
How Is CNS Hating The LGBT Community Now?

You don't have to be a presidential candidate for to abhor you for not being heterosexual.

A March 29 article by Alex Madajian complained that Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel ordered adoption agencies in the state not to cite religious beliefs in discriminating against "homosexual adopters." In addition to putting identifying Nessel as "Michaigan's Lesbian AG" in the headline, Madajian thought the following was important enough to devote the second paragraph of his article to highlighting: "Attorney General Nessel is a lesbian 'married' to her girlfriend, Alanna Maguire, and they have two children."

Madajian continued to be appalled that religious groups can't discriminate against people not like them: "If you are a Christian or Muslim group that believes children have a natural right to a mother and a father, you must nonetheless allow children to be placed into gay households, if that situation should arise." He then repeated attacks on Nessel as an "ideological extremist" showing "contempt for the First Amendment’s guarantee of religious freedom" -- but provides no explanation of why prospective LGBT parents must be discriminated against solely for being LGBT.

Then, on April 5, CNS' gay-hating managing editor, Michael W. Chapman, commiserated with a fellow gay-basher over what the headline described as "Chicago's Lesbian Mayor":

Protestant minister E.W. Jackson, a Marine, Harvard Law School graduate, and president of S.T.A.N.D., criticized Chicago's newly elected openly gay mayor, Lori Lightfoot, for trying to disguise homosexual behavior as "love" -- a "satanic, demonic twisting of language" -- and for using taxpayer money to perpetrate her "filth."

Jackson added that God does care if people are engaging in same-sex behavior and "if God calls it an abomination, it’s an abomination.”


“They’re not talking about love, that’s not what they’re talking about," he said. "They’re talking about who you have sex with. And, really, specifically, they’re saying it doesn’t matter if you have sex with someone of the same gender. The euphemism is just disgusting."

"It really is," he continued, "because this is a satanic, demonic twisting of language to say exactly the opposite of what you mean. … They’re not talking about love. They’re talking about having sex with people of the same gender."

While Chapman was eager to pump up Jackson's military and educaiton credentials in an attempt to give his homophobia some unearned gravitas, he has yet to ackowledge that Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg -- whom CNS won't let us forget is gay -- is a military veteran and a Rhodes Scholar.

Additionally, Chapman showed that he hates gays even more than Muslims with a March 29 article touting how "mostly Muslim parents" objected to "homosexual propaganda" allegedly being taught at a British school, though it had " pledged to stop indoctrinating their elementary students with a pro-LGBT curricula." Chapman made sure to highlight a cultural behavior he seems to approve of: "Islam strongly disapproves of homosexual behavior and it is illegal and punishable by death in some Muslim countries, such as Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Nigeria."

Posted by Terry K. at 3:13 PM EDT
MRC on Trump Cheating At Golf: Everybody Does It!
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center is so in the tank for President Trump that it felt compelled to spend a post downplaying the fact that Trump cheats at golf.

The MRC writer with that grim duty is Alex Christy, who began his April 2 post grousing that MSNBC's "Morning Joe" program "missed April Fool's Day by a day" by having on respected sportswriter Rick Reilly, who found so much about Trump's cheating at golf that he wrote an entire book about it. Christy then went into full spin/sycophancy mode:

Reilly could not imagine why anyone would cheat or bend the truth to some extent on the links. He called a story of Trump hitting his ball into the water multiple times on the same hole, only to say he was putting for four. For Reilly, this sort of lie explains Trump. He recalled a conversation he had with Arnold Palmer who told him that he always played a round of golf with a would-be business partner, '"Because in four hours you can't hide who you are. So, if he cheats on the course, he'll cheat in business. If he's honest and fun, he'll be honest and fun in business."'

Certainly golf is a game of etiquette and players are trusted to be honest and apply the rules themselves, especially for those who play competitively or take their game seriously. For others who just want to have a good time, the use of the foot wedge or turning a six into a four is not a scandal.

However, according to Reilly, Trump is the kind of golfer who takes his game seriously and accused him of lying about his club championships. Co-host Joe Scarborough piled on the Golfer-in-Chief, also accusing him of lying about his scores. Reilly then charged that Trump selectively selected his best rounds to lower his handicap.

Has Trump been completely truthful about his golf game? Probably not. But it is not a national scandal that golfers fudge their handicap or take creative liberties with the USGA rule book.

Christy's shoulder-shrugging over Trump's cheating at golf is a continuation of the MRC's double standard on presidential golf, in which it defends Trump's golf-playing (honestly or otherwise) while it regularly attacked President Obama for allegedly playing too much golf.For instance, in 2012 the MRC thought it was a "startling observation" that Obama played 105 rounds of golf in his first term, only one of which was with a Republican, though Trump has played nearly as many in just the first two years of his presidency (and had criticized the amount of golf Obama played) and whined that it was reported that Obama had played his 300th round of golf as president (and keeps score and doesn't cheat and doesn't take mulligans).

Indeed, the MRC has resorted to whataboutism on the subject. For instance:

So you can see just how much the MRC has to reverse course just to give a pass to Trump for something it regularly attacked Obama for doing.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:23 AM EDT
Updated: Friday, April 19, 2019 9:28 AM EDT
Thursday, April 18, 2019
CNS Doesn't Want You To Forget That Buttigieg Is Gay

As an anti-gay "news" organization, is more than a little bothered by the fact that Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg is not a heterosexual. The latest instance of that came in an April 5 article by Madajian under a headline that refers to "Gay 'Mayor Pete'":

South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg, an openly gay Democrat who is running for the Democratic nomination for president, said that President Donald Trump’s actions indicate he is not “somebody who believes in God.” Buttigieg, however, has been criticized for backing away from his view that “all lives matter,” and for stopping a pro-life group from opening an office.

First, Madajian offers no evidence that Buttigieg's views of Trump have any connection with the other views he cites. Second, like managing editor Michael W. Chapman beforehim, Madajian wanted to make sure we knew that Buttigieg was gay and didn't want to talk about the fact that Buttigieg is also a military veteran and a Rhodes Scholar, which are arguably more pertinent qualifications for the presidency.

CNS also ran its Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez strategy against Buttigieg, in which it puts out-of-context quotes in the headline   to make him look ridiculous. A March 20 article by Susan Jones carried the headline "2020 Democrat Pete Buttigieg: 'My Face Is the Message'" -- an apparent attempt to portray Buttigieg as a narcissist. But as Jones eventually concedes (albeit after mockingly claiming that he was talking about his "physiognomy"), Buttigieg was pointing out that his youth is an asset in running for president.

Jones did also tried to downplay the idea there was anything special about Buttigeig, sneering that "Buttigieg, like many other Democrats running for president, wants to change the Supreme Court and abolish the Electoral College, among other liberal policy positions." While Jones did not single out the fact that Buttigieg is gay, she also failed to mention that he's also a military veteran and Rhodes Scholar.

Posted by Terry K. at 6:33 PM EDT
Another WND Columnist Thinks 'Unplanned' Myth Is True
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Laura Hollis serves up the usual propaganda in her April 4 WorldNetDaily column promoting the anti-abortion film "Unplanned":

As most who have followed the story know, Johnson was the director of a Planned Parenthood clinic in Texas – and the youngest director in the organization’s history. Like many women who volunteer or work for Planned Parenthood, she was initially motivated by a deep concern for women in difficult situations. But she began to question her career when it became clear that her objective to reduce the number of abortions ran counter to Planned Parenthood’s corporate policy; the organization rewarded and promoted employees on the basis of how many abortions were performed at their clinics.

The watershed moment for Johnson was when she was asked to assist with an abortion of a 13-week-old fetus. Johnson watched on the ultrasound, horrified, as the fetus squirmed away from the vacuum suction tube, only to be violently dismembered as it was sucked into the tube and killed.

Johnson subsequently left Planned Parenthood and became a nationally known activist in the pro-life movement. She has since founded “And Then There Were None,” a nonprofit organization whose objective is to assist abortion workers who have left the industry. Hundreds, Johnson says, have done so.

But as we've pointed out, Planned Parenthood stated that there were no ultrasound-guided abortions on the day that Johnson claims, Johnson did not assist on any abortion that day, and the only abortion patient that day who comes closest to the person described in Johnson's story was too early in her pregnancy to require the use of ultrasound. (Johnson has clamed withou evidence that Planned Parenthood doctored records to make her look bad.)

Hollis is not the first WND columnist to embrace this myth; Michael Brown also uncritically promoted it.

Hollis then complained about a "history of deep deception on the 'pro-choice' side that calls their motivation into question," whiile also praising anti-abortion pregnancy centers that are "addressing the fears of the women who come to them and providing them with resources to address their needs." In fact, many of these crisis pregnancy centers provide false or misleading information to woman in order to coerce them out of having an abortion or to promote abstinence-based sex education.

Posted by Terry K. at 3:14 PM EDT
MRC Parrots Anti-Omar Narrative -- Then Gets Mad When The Narrative Is Pointed Out
Topic: Media Research Center

The Media Research Center has eagerly parroted the right-wing narrative that Rep. Ilhan Omar insulted America by allegedly describing 9/11 as "some people did something."

For instance, Kristine Marsh huffed that Omar "outrageously called the deadliest terrorist attack on American soil as simply the event where 'some people did something'" and that an interview with CBS' Stephen Colbert "intentionally didn’t mention what she actually said." But in complaining that the interview focused on Fox News "daring to air these comments," Marsh intentionally didn't mention that one Fox News host -- outrageously, one might say -- questioned whether Omar was a real American.

Kyle Drennen called Omar's comments "offensive" and whined that some media outlets didn't give the right-wing narrative the coverage the MRC demanded in favor of other news, sarcastically complaining that  "those stories were much more important that a Democratic politician dismissing the worst terrorist attack in American history."

Curtis Houck whined that the Omar's alleged characterization of 9/11 was "bizarre" and that the story was being framed as a "Fox News-fueled controversy" -- though it was largely driven by Fox News.

Mark Finkelstein was offended when MSNBC's Joe Scarborough said it was important for Omar to succeed as a member of Congress, arguing that she needed someone to "Ameri-splain" to her why "obfuscating the reality of 9/11" might be offensive, adding, "If Omar doesn't understand that by now, she richly deserves to fail."

But when anyone tried to counter the right-wing anti-Omar narrative -- or even point out the fact that it was a narrative -- the MRC cried foul.

Tim Graham was upset that a Washington Post fact-check put Omar's remarks in context -- and we know how much Graham hates that non-conservatives are given context (though he demands it when conservatives are selectively quoted). He was further upset that the fact-checker pointed out that PresidentGeorge W. Bush also vaguely described 9/11 in one speech, dismissing it as "weak connective thread."

Nicholas Fondacaro, went into rage mode when CNN's Brian Stelter pointed out the manufactured nature of the Omar controversy. After calling Omar's comments "disgusting," Fondacaro gratuitously insulted Stelter by calling him a "media dung-sweeper" with "few viewers." He then attacked Stelter for accurately pointing out that Omar's right-wing critics are acting in bad faith, then went into whataboutism mode:

Stelter paints these terrible phantom motives on his political opponents and then has the nerve to declare others were acting in bad faith. He described conservative media as the “right-wing rage machine”, but never considered that Omar’s comments were actually offensive to most Americans. Nope, to him, it was all part of some insidious plot.

Pretending to be an intellectual, Stelter opined about how “the big questions” needed to be asked: “where does the controversy come from? How was it created in the first place? Who created it? Who stands to benefit from it being created? And who stands to lose, who stands to suffer?”

That’s actually some good advice. People should think about how CNN creates controversies, how CNN stand to benefit from it, and who CNN is trying to hurt.

We already know that CNN boss Jeff Zucker likes to cook up entertainment instead of actual news. We know the network likes to pretend the revolving door between the White House and the media came into existence with this administration, or at least wasn’t used often. Pushing the collusion conspiracy was in their best interest because their ratings tanked (and still are) after Attorney General Barr announced no collusion was found. But Stelter defended their years of speculation. This is CNN.

Responding with rage at the idea of being called part of a "right-wing rage machine," while also hurling unprofessional, rage-filled insults in the process? This is the MRC.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:08 AM EDT
Updated: Friday, April 19, 2019 9:44 AM EDT
Wednesday, April 17, 2019
AIM Not Accepting That Trump Wasn't Completely Exonerated
Topic: Accuracy in Media

In a March 26 Accuracy in Media post, Brian McNicoll responded to a Washington Post news quiz about the Mueller investigation with the usual pro-Trump talking points. And, like Trump, McNicoll couldn't accept the fact that even Attorney General William Barr's summary concluded that Trump was not exonerated on the question of obstruction:

To the question: “Did Mueller conclude that Trump obstructed justice?” the reply was “Right, but it’s also a bit more complicated …”

To the question: “Did Mueller conclude that Trump DID NOT obstruct justice?” the response was: “Though Trump tweeted ‘Total EXONERATION’ following the release, Mueller did not come to a conclusion on the question and Barr’s summary of Mueller’s report said it ‘did not exonerate’ Trump. Citing ‘the public interest in the matter,’ Barr said he planned to release more of Mueller’s full report, though significant portions may be missing.”

It then supplied a quote from Barr’s summary: “While this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him.”

It never mentions that Barr and Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein concluded Trump did not obstruct justice and would not be charged, or that they were likely on sound legal footing.

McNicoll also complained that the news quiz pointed out that Trump-connected individuals have been found guilty of crimes in the Mueller investigation, grumbing that "none of the crimes for which they were found guilty involved Trump or collusion or obstruction." In fact, at least one was: Michael Flynn pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his communications with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak during the presidential transition after Trump named him national security adviser.

McNicoll also involed a right-wing conspiracy theory that the Post claimed "without evidence" that "Flynn pleaded guilty to lying about conversations with Russians – although it doesn’t mention even the FBI now doubts he is guilty." But as we've noted, Flynn was being investigated on numrous other charges of making false statements, and in his plea agreement, Flynn pledged to cooperate with Mueller in exchange for the rest of the charges against him being dropped.

Posted by Terry K. at 10:25 PM EDT
CNS Whitewashes Professor's Anti-Trangender Views

Alex Madajian dutifully writes in an April 1 article:

A conservative civil liberties group is suing the University of Louisville (Kentucky) on behalf of a child psychology professor who was demoted, then effectively fired, he says, for his view that young children should not undergo life-altering treatment for gender dysphoria.

The university hired Dr. Allan M. Josephson in 2003 to be the chief of the Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Psychology. Since then, the lawsuit contends, he has turned the division around, boosting its national reputation.

But Josephson ran afoul of the University's LGBT Center in the fall of 2017, when he took part in a panel discussion at The Heritage Foundation on gender dysphoria in young children.

But Madajian presents only one side of the story -- that of Josephson and the "civil liberties group" suing on his behalf, the right-wing Alliance Defending Freedom. At one point, he simply repeats how "the lawsuit lays out Josephson's position" on "young people experiencing gender dysphoria," framing Josephson's views as innocuous or mainstream. He does not quote anyone from his university or anyone offering a critique of Josephson's views -- which effectively makes this article little more than an ADF press release.

In fact, Josephson's views on transgenderism hew so closely to conservative disdain for it that Josephson has worked as a consultant for ADF on transgender issues in the past -- something Madajian didn't report.

Madajian also failed to report that  in that Heritage Foundaton discussion, Josephson attacked "transgender ideology" -- a term, like "gender ideology," is only used these days by conservatives who think that's an actual thing that must be opposed.

Indeed, an actual news organization reported that one LGBT advocate pointed out that, contrary to Josephson's views, "The vast majority of folks who work with transgender adults and youth concur that supporting someone's decision to transition as early as they are sure about their desire to do it is what can save their lives."

Once again, the Media Research Center's "news" division engages in the exact same behavior it attacks when "liberal media" outlets do it.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:55 PM EDT
NEW ARTICLE: Vaccine Misinformers Get A WND Platform
Topic: WorldNetDaily
The fringe-right Association of American Physicians and Surgeons knows it can count on WorldNetDaily to let it peddle anti-vaxxer conspiracy theories unchallenged. Read more >>

Posted by Terry K. at 12:16 AM EDT
Tuesday, April 16, 2019
MRC Mad At 'Black Press Only' Event, Silent On Pompeo's Briefing Only For 'Faith Based Media'
Topic: NewsBusters

Randy Hall found something to be offended about in a March 29 NewsBusters post (boldface in original):

One of liberal Democrats’ favorite tactics these days is to smear anyone who doesn’t agree with them as a racist. However, they don’t always follow their own rules due to an apparent “do as I say, not as I do” mentality.

That philosophy was on full display in Savannah, Georgia, on Wednesday night, when reporters attempting to cover an event for candidates in the upcoming mayoral election were greeted with signs that said “Black Press Only.”

According to an article by Amanda Prestigiacomo, a writer with the Daily Wire, attendance at the Bolton Street Baptist Church was even more restricted than that, as other signs stated that “No Audio or Video Recording!” would be allowed.

Prestigiacomo then quoted the Savannah Morning News for noting that the event was coordinated by Rev. Clarence Teddy Williams, owner of the Trigon Group consulting group, "to garner support for just one black candidate in Savannah’s mayoral election."


While several black reporters and public officials attended the gathering, none of them would state they agreed with the overtly racist policy demonstrated there:


Of course, if this event had been arranged by a conservative Republican, and there were signs on the doors of “White Press Only” and “No Audio or Video Recording,” it would be virtually impossible to escape the scathing coverage across the country from virtually every outlet in the “mainstream media.”

Meanwhile, Hall -- not to mention anyone else at NewsBusters or any other Media Research Center website, for that matter -- has yet to mention a similar act of bigotry perpetrated not by a political candidate but by the Trump administration.

On March 18, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo held a press briefing conference call only for "faith-based media" -- thus effectively creating a religious test for reporters wanting to cover Pompeo. Not only has the State Department refused to release a list of the "faith-based media" outlets who took part in the briefing, it has also refused to release a transcript of what was said in the briefing.

If the coverage restriction by the Georgia candidate is so offensive to Hall -- as judged by the boldface he used in writing about it and the word "SEGREGATED" in all-caps in his headline -- why isn't Pompeo's discriminatory and segregated coverage restriction? We may never get an answer.

Posted by Terry K. at 8:15 PM EDT
WND Columnist Goes Godwin on Transgenders (While Pretending He's Not)
Topic: WorldNetDaily

It began with doctrines of socialism, racialism and the green movement on college campuses. Yet soon it spread to high schools, then middle schools. As these leftist teachings took hold of our youth, the left continued, as they always do, to push the envelope of normalcy.

History has shown that it is relatively easy to indoctrinate the young to believe most anything.

Just look at how easily the Nazi propaganda ministry developed classroom lesson plans to teach children of the superiority of the Arian race, turning German children into Nazi Youth, or how the Palestinians have brainwashed their young to hate Jews and wish to kill.

These various radical philosophies were damaging enough to the young, but still, they only sought to change the students’ minds, not their bodies.

Now all that has changed. The latest leftist sensation sweeping our nation is transgenderism. Most adults have yet to buy into the propaganda, which is why the movement has now set its sights on our youth. And they understand, as did the Nazis and Islamists, that the earlier you grab hold of young minds, the better.

I’m, of course, not equating the radical transgender movement with Nazis or radical Islam. I’m merely suggesting that this is the very same tack used throughout history to inculcate and brainwash youth into thinking and acting in a pre-designated way.


We on the right, at least most of us, adhere to a live and let live philosophy. We frankly don’t care what anyone claims to be. But this live and let live philosophy isn’t good enough for the radical left. They’re not happy until they force us into celebrating their “alternative” lifestyles.

And since they’ve been unsuccessful at convincing us thus far, they’ve decided instead to attempt to indoctrinate our youth into first acceptance and then celebration.

-- Brent Smith, March 22 WorldNetDaily column

Posted by Terry K. at 3:40 PM EDT
CNS Still Thinks Mocking AOC Is 'News'

As a right-wing "news" outlet, thinks it's "news" to take lame shots at Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, usually with headlines designed to make her look ridiculous and unserious. That pattern hasn't stopped.

An anonymously written March 1 article pulls a line by AOC out of context in the headline -- "Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez: ‘I’m the Boss!’" -- and in the lead: "At an event at the New York Hall of Science on Feb. 22, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez described why it was important for her to have introduced her Green New Deal, saying: 'I’m the boss.'"

It's not until later that CNS gets around to putting the statement in context, revealing it to be much less braggodocius than it was portrayed in the headline and lead paragraph:

“I just introduced Green New Deal two weeks ago and it is creating all of this conversation. Why?” Ocasio-Cortez said. “Because no one else has even tried. Because no one else has even tried. So people are like: Oh, it’s unrealistic. Oh, it’s vague. Oh, it doesn’t address this little minute thing.

“And I am like: You try! You do it! Cause you’re not! Cause you’re not!” she said.

“So until you do it, I am the boss,” said Ocasio-Cortez. “How about that!”

Another anonymously written article -- funny how no writer at CNS wants to put their names on these hit pieces, isn't it? -- carries the headline "Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez: ‘What We Need to Do is Have a Serious Conversation’ About Cow Flatulence." But the article makes it clear she didn't say exactly that:

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D.-N.Y.) said in a March 29 appearance on MSNBC’s “All in With Chris Hayes” that Americans “need to have a serious conversation” about climate change, including the contribution being made to it by “cow flatulence.”


Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez responded: What I will say is that there--I definitely had a staffer that had a very bad day at work and did release a working draft early. So I get that that’s what they’re seizing on. But really what we need to do is have a serious conversation. And even in in those draft versions, what they were talking about, and, is really about the fact that we need to innovate on our technology you know? Obviously like, I had a staffer you know, released a document to talk about cow flatulence but--

Hayes interrupted: Which is an issue, I just want to say.

“Which is an issue, but here`s the thing,” said Ocasio-Cortez.

“It sounds ridiculous but it literally is an issue,” said Hayes.

“But actually it`s an issue when it comes to contributing to methane,” said Ocasio-Cortez, “but that doesn`t mean you end cows. It means that we need--What it means is that we need to innovate and change our grain, our cow grain, from which you know, they feed in these troughs, that we need to really take a look at regenerative agriculture. Like these are our solutions.”

In other words, there's notable distance between "serious conversation" and "cow flatulence." But CNS' narrative on AOC is to make her look ridiculous, not accurately report the facts.

There was one attack on AOC to which the writer did volunteer to be identified, though. A Feb. 15 piece by managing editor Michael W. Chapman lectured her: "Although nearly all the major studies on habitual marijuana use show a strong link between its consumption and mental illness, including schizophrenia, and violence, House Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) said it's perfectly fine if a president of the United States smokes dope because 'you're not hurting anybody.'  The 29-year-old self-declared socialist added, 'yeah, I don't care.'" Indeed, most of Chapman's piece is reciting "bulleted highlights" from author Alex Berenson's speech at the right-wing Hillsdale College about "his findings on teenage marijuana use and its link to mental illness and violence."

Chapman didn't mention that the author didn't exactly help his case by giving his book the same title as original title of the notoriously insane anti-marijuana propaganda film "Reefer Madness" -- or that his book has been largely dismissed as inaccurate and alarmist.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:43 AM EDT
Monday, April 15, 2019
WND's Anti-Vaxxer 'Health Pros' Are Just Its Fringe-Right Dubious Docs
Topic: WorldNetDaily

The headline on an April 10 WorldNetDaily article read "Health pros: De Blasio's forced vaccinations abuse of power." But the only "health pro" WND quotes is the article is its old fringe-right anti-vaxxer friend, Jane Orient of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons. WND gave Orient unchallenged space to rant against New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio's order to vaccinate people in order to stop a measles epidemic in the city:

But Dr. Jane Orient, the executive director of the AAPS, argues the Supreme Court already has ruled against such an order.

“The U.S. Supreme Court warned against ‘arbitrary and oppressive’ abuse of police power, going ‘far beyond what was reasonably required for the safety of the public,’ in the 1905 case of Jacobson v. Massachusetts,” she explained.

“This case concerned smallpox vaccination during a deadly epidemic that killed 30 percent or more of persons infected.

“In its vast overreach, New York is ignoring these cautions,” she said.

Orient is misleading: Jacobson v. Massachusetts actually upheld the right of states to enforce compulsory vaccination. It did, however, create a medical exemption to compulsory vaccination, and it ruled that people could not be forcibly vaccinated but could be punished with fines or imprisonment for refusing to do so. Further, the party that made the argument that compulsory vaccination was "arbitrary and oppressive" was plaintiff Henning Jacobson, not the Supreme Court as Orient suggests.

The rest of the WND article rehashes Orient's and the AAPS anti-vaxxer stance, including the scientifically unsound claim that "vaccines are inevitably unsafe." As opposed to catching a disease a person could die from?

Posted by Terry K. at 5:48 PM EDT
MRC Loves The Lazy 'Meathead' Insult of Rob Reiner
Topic: Media Research Center

We noted a couple of years back how the Media Research Center loves calling Rob Reiner "Meathead" as a cheap, lazy insult whenever he expresses an opinion it doesn't like. Indeed, that cheap, lazy insult has only increased in frequency during the Trump years, many them coming from the lazy keyboard of MRC writer Corinne Weaver:

  • "actor/director and famed Meathead Rob Reiner" -- Matt Philbin, Jan. 20, 2017
  • "Meathead is on the case." -- Corinne Weaver, Sept. 19, 2017
  • "we don't trust you, Meathead, nor should we." -- Tom Blumer, Sept. 24, 2017
  • "When Meathead isn’t pushing Russian conspiracy theories on news networks, he spends his free time … complaining about Donald Trump." -- Weaver, Oct. 25, 2017
  • "Rob Reiner, aka Meathead, thought he was so close to making Donald Trump 'go away.'" -- Weaver, Oct. 30, 2017
  • "Meathead has returned again (does he ever really go away?) to tell the people all about President Trump." -- Weaver, Nov. 17, 2017
  • Rob Reiner decided that the Alabama vote was indicative of events to come. In true Meathead fashion, he tweeted..." -- Weaver, Dec. 13, 2017
  • "Leave it to Hollywood to offer some less than valuable commentary on breaking stories. Actually, leave it to Meathead." -- Weaver, Jan. 11, 2018
  • "The actor and director more commonly known as “Meathead” decided that the problem with Roseanne Barr, a real-life Trump supporter, is that she and her character are too similar." -- Weaver, April 2, 2018
  • "MSNBC host Joy Reid served up a double helping of 'Meathead' as liberal film maker Rob Reiner and his wife, Michele Reiner, spent a segment ranting against President Donald Trump and his "hardcore racist" supporters." -- Brad Wilmouth, June 24, 2018
  • "Behold the ridiculousness from Meathead." -- Curtis Houck, June 29, 2018
  • "Actor Rob “Meathead” Reiner tweeted..." -- Weaver, July 9, 2018
  • "Conservatives got a kick out of how Meathead's movie flopped." -- Tim Graham, July 21, 2018
  • "She pleaded with Reiner to help her figure this out, so Reiner responded as only Meathead could, which is double down[.]" -- Houck, Aug. 1, 2018

The latest lazy insult came in an April 3 post by Tim Graham headlined "'Meathead' Rob Reiner Still Cries Collusion: 'The Russians Robbed the Bank,' Trump Hid Them." Graham also dropped the insult in his piece as well, claiming that "'Meathead' has dramatically changed his spin to suggesting special counsel Robert Mueller had a 'very, very narrow charge' to investigate."

The fact that the MRC as a whole apparently can't separate an actor from a role he hasn't played in 40 years -- and can't rise above cheap, lazy insults -- does not inspire a sense that anyone should take it seriously.

Posted by Terry K. at 2:03 PM EDT
WND, Newsmax Defend Dershowitz Against Sex Allegations
Topic: WorldNetDaily

Over the past several months, attorney Alan Dershowitz has become the ConWeb's favorite liberal for his willingness to defend President Trump -- for instance, WorldNetDaily managing editor David Kupelian declared him to be "people of conscience and principle" because of his Trump defenses. Now, ConWeb components are defending Dershowitz himself over allegations raised as part of the Jeffrey Epstein sex scandal.

A Miami Herald series on Epstein repeated the claim of one of Epstein's alleged sex trafficking victims that she had sex with Dershowitz -- who has served as Epstein's attorney -- while underage. Dershowitz has regularly denied any involvement with the woman and has said he has never met her. But the story has persisted, so Dershowitz's new conservative friends are running to his defense.

An anonymously written April 3 WorldNetDaily article uncritically repeats Dershowitz's attack on the Herald for repeating the allegations against him -- though it waited until the 11th paragraph to reveal that crucial part of it.The article also made sure to highlight Bill Clinton's alleged connections to Epstein -- but not Trump's.

WND has previously buried Dershowitz's link to the Epstein scandal, as well as Trump's, while hyping Clinton's link to it.

Newsmax also published an article the same day, but while it was more upfront about the allegations against Dershowitz, it was as one-sided as the WND piece; neither sought out the Herald for its response to his allegations.

And the Herald did have a response: a series of tweets in which it declared it stood by its story and claimed that in a meeting with the Herald, Dershowitz "read select passages from voluminous documents that he said vindicated him. He declined to let the journalists examine the documents or take copies."

Neither WND nor Newsmax did a follow-up story reporting the Herald's response. Newsmax did, however, publish an April 11 column by Dershowitz again attacking the accusations against him, though not mentioning the Herald by name, let alone reporting their response to his accusations.

Refusing to tell the full story to protect a political ally is not a good look for either WND or Newsmax.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:29 AM EDT
Updated: Monday, April 15, 2019 9:19 PM EDT
Sunday, April 14, 2019
MRC Is Offended That TV Characters Aren't Shamed For Having Abortions
Topic: Media Research Center

In a March 15 Media Research Center post, Rebecca Downs was offended that a character of the TV show "Shrill" had an abortion and didn't feel guilty about it or wasn't shamed for having one, that the procedure was portrayed as "relatively nonchalant" and that the character later feld "all empowered and glowing as she tries on a new dress." Downs continued to be offended that "the rest of the show delves into [the character's] life as if the pregnancy and abortion never happened" and that "the abortion is only mentioned in two of the six episodes for this first season."

Downs' rage was renewed in a March 28 post, in which she lectured a writer for "Shrill" who described the abortion scene as "almost boring television" and who pointed out that abortion clinic workers get harrassed and murdered:

No, we shouldn't normalize the fact that thousands of babies are killed from abortion each day, no matter how long the abortion procedure--which sucks the child out with a powerful vacuum--takes. Women are not dying because they do not have access to abortion, especially in the United States, which has some of the most permissive abortion laws in the world. 

It’s not merely “anti-choicers” who describe abortion as something that “hurts” or is “scary” or “traumatic” or “evil.” Post-abortive women share the regret they themselves felt after their abortions, though for many women these effects were not necessarily felt right away. Those women who initially feel "really, really good" or "very fucking powerful" and want to partake in #ShoutYourAbortion may not feel that way in a few months or years.

Violence against abortion workers is not pro-life and is unacceptable. West is correct that abortion workers “don’t have to do this work,” but the success of former Planned Parenthood director Abby Johnson’s And Then There Were None organization that helps abortion staff transition out of the industry should give people pause.

The idea that violence against "abortion workers" is "unacceptable" seems to run counter to a recent tweet on the NewsBusters Twitter account declaring, "There is no such thing as being 'extreme' when it comes to protecting innocent lives in the womb."

Downs then served up a list of "recent examples of TV series with scenes that showed abortion in a nonchalant or positive way."

Similarly, a March 29 post by Karen Townsend was annoyed that a character on "Gray's Anatomy" said she wasn't ashamed of an abortion she'd had years earlier when she was in an abusive relationship, grumbling that the abortion "is written off as something she just 'had' to do."

Posted by Terry K. at 9:35 PM EDT

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