Accuracy in Media

NowThis News published an article that seemingly endorsed the practice of abortions. In its recent article, headlined, “Pro-Choice Billboards Were Set Up Around New Mexico,” NowThis News took the stance that abortions “are safe and legal,” which can be interpreted as a partisan stance.

The article made it seem to the reader that safe and legal abortions are normal in America, which the pro-life (or as the AP stylebook says, anti-abortion) community would disagree with. It began with the sentence, “Billboards have been set up around New Mexico to remind women that abortions are safe and legal.” The article said that the New Mexico billboard campaign was funded by Young Women United, a pro-choice group “that fights for reproductive justice for women of color.”

The billboard campaign included billboard advertisements in Spanish, to cater to the Spanish-speaking populations in the state and along the U.S.-Mexico border. The article also quoted the organization’s executive director without asking for a quote from the pro-life perspective.

NowThis News cited a study from the Guttmacher Institute, without explicitly referring to the organization’s name. The study claimed that 74% of rural New Mexicans believe that abortion should be a personal decision. NowThis News did not include the fact that Guttmacher was founded by the pro-choice advocacy group Planned Parenthood, though Guttmacher has since officially become a separate entity from Planned Parenthood. It clearly represented NowThis’s bias by solely representing one side of the abortion debate and citing a study from a pro-choice group, while ignoring the other side of the debate.

News media should not endorse, implicitly or explicitly, political views, stances, or opinions. NowThis News took a blatant political stance and yet portrayed itself as a neutral and trustworthy news source. Those in the pro-life community would strongly disagree with the article’s premise and would point out terrible health conditions in abortion clinics, as was found in Dr. Gosnell’s Pennsylvania abortion clinics in 2013. Also, citing a pro-choice group’s study without a rebuttal from the other side is another issue, as it unfairly portrayed the issue to the audience without a fair rebuttal.

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