The Federalist’s Mollie Hemingway delivered a punch to the gut yesterday over the string of Planned Parenthood videos that were released by the Center for Medical Progress. No one has really heard of them, let alone watched them–though slightly more have watched some of the videos about the sting.
The graphic videos reportedly show aborted babies that are ripped apart to harvest their organs for research. At the same time, it also captures Planned Parenthood personnel admitting that they could alter the abortion procedure in order to give the sellers– who were undercover Center for Medical Progress staffers– intact organs. That’s illegal. The only question is what are the legal repercussions?
Yet, according to a YouGov poll, 70 percent of Americans have heard a little or next to nothing regarding the investigation allegedly showing the illegal sale of human body parts. That high figure is pretty much duplicated with age, income, and geographical location regarding the Center for Medical Progress’ sting operation. Regarding asking those specifically if they've watched any of the videos, only 45 percent said they had watched the gruesome footage. Is media bias at play here? It’s not a far-fetched idea.
For the Big Three–CBS, NBC, and ABC–the abortion videos weren’t news; some dead lion was more worthy of airtime. The Media Research Center’s Katie Yoder broke down the numbers. In three weeks, since Cecil the Lion was hunted down by a Minnesota dentist, the major networks have devoted cumulatively 92 minutes on him, and a meager 20 minutes on Planned Parenthood (via NewsBusters):
Here’s the breakdown of time by network on Cecil the lion after three weeks:
ABC: 27 minutes, 8 seconds
NBC: 35 minutes, 34 seconds
CBS: 30 minutes, 14 seconds
TOTAL: 1 hour, 32 minutes, 56 seconds
Here’s the breakdown of time by network on the Planned Parenthood videos after three weeks:
ABC: 1 minute, 27 seconds
NBC: 6 minutes, 6 seconds
CBS: 12 minutes, 48 seconds
TOTAL: 20 minutes, 21 seconds
Concerning Planned Parenthood’s approval with the American public, 50 percent have a favorable to somewhat favorable opinion of the organization;
36 percent have an unfavorable one.; and 14 percent simply don’t know how they feel towards the non-profit.
As for our feelings toward abortion, the two camps–pro-life and pro-abortion–have roughly equal shares of the country on their side. Forty-six percent of Americans generally think abortion should be legal, though the larger subset–29 percent-said it should come with some restrictions. Forty-eight percent of Americans think abortion should generally be illegal, with certain exceptions. Five percent said they weren’t sure. Lastly, while Gallup reported that a majority of Americans support not overturning Roe v. Wade, they also favor restrictions and are opposed to late-term abortion. So, we’re not a pro-choice nation, despite what some on the pro-abortion side like to say while speaking with members of the liberal media. At the same time, we’re not really a pro-life nation either, though most seem to favor placing limits on the practice. For now, that’s a trend I’m willing to tolerate for now. We might not be able to ban abortion, but at least we can pass parental notification laws and late-term abortion bans to curb this horrific front in America’s culture wars.
I guess the silver lining is that even with the limited media impact these videos have inflicted on the American public, Planned Parenthood has been placed on the defensive. New Hampshire has defunded their five centers in the state. Ford, Xerox, and Coca-Cola have also asked Planned Parenthood to remove their names from their corporate sponsors lists since they either haven't donated in years, or have stopped matching employee contributions at least 10 years.