AP, other Media Ignore Conservative Court Victory on Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell

From the Culture and Media Institute:

Media ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ about Key Ruling
Court’s affirmation of military policy goes unreported even by AP, which instead exhorts Democrats to rescind ban on homosexuality.

By Robert Knight and Julia Seward
Culture and Media Institute
June 12, 2008

When it comes to reporting on court rulings about the military’s ban on homosexuality, the media seem to have their own “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy.

A case in point was Monday’s ruling by the First Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in Cook vs. Gates upholding the ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ policy, established by Congress and President Clinton in 1993, which enables the military to remove open homosexuals from service.

There was no coverage by the TV networks, nor by the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, USA Today or the Washington Post. The Associated Press (AP) ignored the story as well. Only the Boston Globe and Boston Herald carried brief articles on it, because the case originated in Boston.

In contrast, the New York Times had a 511-word piece by Adam Liptak on a Ninth Circuit Court decision reinstating a lesbian Air Force major’s lawsuit against the policy. AP had a preview article on May 21 and coverage of the decision on May 22. The latter article, by Gene Johnson, had the usual inclusion of a pro-gay spokesman “hailing” the ruling, and no one defending the military’s policy. CNN also ran a brief piece on it.

On Wednesday, Associated Press continued its biased coverage of the issue by running a story by Anne Flaherty titled, “Dems reluctant to take on ‘don’t ask, don’t tell.’

The article, which was picked up by ABCNews.com, does not mention the federal court ruling two days before, nor the May 22 ruling. Flaherty begins:

“Democrats say the nation should be ashamed of its ban on gays serving openly in the military. It discourages qualified people from joining the ranks at a time when the armed forces are stretched by two wars, they say, and is degrading to those willing to serve their country.

“So what have the Democrats done about it? Nothing, really.”

Substitute the word journalists for the word Democrats and you get a precise picture of where the media are on this issue. Many reporters are past pretending to be objective, and sometimes even descend to taunting fellow liberals for not moving fast enough on their pet issue.

When something happens that they don’t like, such as a federal court ruling, they sometimes respond with a news blackout. In this case, they followed up by hectoring public officials.

AP writer Flaherty’s story is a classic example of biased journalism. Flaherty quotes Nathaniel Frank, identifying him only as “a senior research fellow at the Michael D. Palm Center in Santa Barbara, Calif., who supports eliminating the ban.” She does not share with readers that the Palm Center is a pro-homosexual advocacy group formerly called the Center for the Study of Sexual Minorities in the Military at UC Santa Barbara.

Click HERE to read the rest of the story on CMI’s website

This article was posted on Friday, June 13th, 2008 at 11:28 am and is filed under Court Decisions & Judges, Gay Rights vs. Others' Rights, Media Promotion, Media's Liberal Bias (General), Military, New York Times, News, Washington Post. You can follow any updates to this article through the RSS 2.0 feed.

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