The problem with most major media is that they don’t realize that the rest of us clearly see that they’ve chosen a side, refusing to feign any interest in asking hard questions of those they support. Nowhere is this more obvious than on the subject of abortion, as schizophrenic media responses to stories of trafficking in baby body parts caused most major media to basically say move along, nothing to see here.
First the story: This week, a shocking undercover video from the Center for Medical Progress shows Planned Parenthood’s senior director of medical services, Deborah Nucatola callously drinking a glass of wine over a lovely meal as she describes how she alters her abortion techniques to harvest the most sellable organs from her unborn victims, which she can move for $30 to $100 per piece, depending on the market. The profiteering of the nation’s largest abortion provider was on display in full view in the discussion of an inhumane body parts market operating behind the closed doors of abortion clinics.
With Dr. Nucatola operating as a modern day Sweeney Todd, selling her gruesome wares, you would think it would merit significant notice.
But for most media, it’s not Planned Parenthood that should be called to account, the real targets should be those horrified by tales of butchered infants marketed by the nation’s largest abortion provider or those brave enough to make the facts available.
Today on MSNBC, Mark Halperin behaved true to form in ignoring the actual elephant in the room to try and redirect this Planned Parenthood story to the GOP. With former Texas governor and presidential candidate Rick Perry on the show, Halperin got straight to the Planned Parenthood controversy when it came his turn to ask a question:
“There’s a controversy swirling around them that you’ve weighed in on. First I’d like you to say, does Planned Parenthood do anything, provide any services that you think are valuable, and if so what are they? And second, why are you so troubled by this video?”
For Halperin, the issue wasn’t some kind of turn-of-the-century trafficking in human remains newly revealed, but what Rick Perry might like about the vendor. And reading between the lines, somehow if any non-deadly service could be located in the facilities where baby body parts are packaged and sold, that makes everything ok?
Imagine if this kind of reasoning and questioning was applied to the fallen Bill Cosby, discredited by stories of sexual improprieties. Would Halperin say, faced with newly released materials indicating that the actor drugged women for sex, “First, what do you like about Bill Cosby and the charitable works he engaged in? And second, what troubles you about the materials released?”
It’s interesting to note that even President Obama has weighed in on whether Cosby’s behavior is a problem, while he has nothing to say so far about the possible criminal acts of his political friends and allies at Planned Parenthood who make close to half of their billion dollar budget from taxpayers.
This issue is not going away, and a discussion of possible crimes committed can’t be wiped away so easily as something that might bother Rick Perry alone. The alleged illegal sales of infant remains, collected in such a way as to guarantee maximum reimbursement, trouble many people across a political spectrum.
While pro-life advocates like Americans United for Life look into the legalities of what is taking place, the Washington Post — coming late to the game of covering the video — assures everyone, “As for its long-term impact on the abortion debate, though, don’t expect a sea change.”
This is hardly good news. And it’s rather astounding and partisan to proclaim — one day after the revelations — that allegedly horrific acts will not have an impact on public policy or public perception. But a media that sees no evil, whether faced with convicted abortionist murderer Kermit Gosnell or a shopping list of body parts of unborn infants, may find itself on the wrong side of this issue. People may well be moved to act to address Planned Parenthood’s alleged trafficking in infant remains.
Questions of law must be addressed, but they are not the whole story. Both the letter of the law and the spirit of the law must come together to ensure that we don’t treat the most vulnerable among us as something to sell from an abortion clinic.
Kristi S. Hamrick is a media consultant with Americans United for Life. Follow @KristiSHamrick