Praying the Post
Thursday, January 23, 2003
Making it count
There's not much more to say that isn't stunningly obvious about the Post's coverage of the March for Life, particularly in comparison with the anti-war rally.But I just want to tease one point a little, the question of numbers.
How many people marched against war on Saturday in Washington? "Tens of thousands," reported the Post.
How many people marched against legal abortion on Wednesday in Washington? "Tens of thousands," reported the Post.
Fine, that's just the Post's way of dealing with the fact that no one has a very accurate count of these things. But, "The [March for Life] crowd was estimated by U.S. Capitol Police Chief Terrance W. Gainer at 50,000." And, "'I've heard estimates [of attendance at the anti-war march] anywhere from 30,000 to 50,000 from people who've seen a lot of these things,' Gainer said." (This last quote from a valuable article on crowd estimation.)
Does this make the two events roughly the same size?
What is it, precisely, that makes the anti-war event more newsworthy than the anti-abortion event? I mean, I know that war is more newsworthy than abortion rights, but what is the story of the anti-war march, and how does it differ from the story of the anti-abortion march?
At least they're up front about their dishonesty
I sent this letter to Michael Getler, the Post's ombusdman:
Dear Mr. Getler:
Tuesday, January 21, 2003
Maybe it's anti-semitism
Last May there was a report on anti-Catholicism in America, leaving some of us comfortable in the sentiment that anti-Catholicism is the anti-Semitism of the intellectuals.
This past Sunday, the Unconventional Wiz reported that anti-Semitism itself is on the rise:
On question after question, researchers found that the proportion of Americans between the ages of 18 and 35 who held anti-Semitic views was consistently higher than the percentage of middle-aged Americans who shared those attitudes.More specifically,
We Catholics can feel sorry for ourselves over the prejudices we face, but not at the cost of ignoring the lingering, and arguably strengthening, prejudices against Jews.
Somewhere, a dog barked
Well, it's the day before the annual March for Life. No mention in the Post.