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Tipsheet

Christian Radio Station KLOVE Criticized for Banning Promotion of Pro-life Movie 'Unplanned'

Timothy Tai/Columbia Daily Tribune via AP, File

According to a report in Metro Voice News, popular Christian radio station K-LOVE has banned promotion of the recently-released pro-life film “Unplanned.” And Abby Johnson, the former Planned Parenthood clinic director whose life serves as the basis for the film, is speaking out.

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In a March 22 Facebook post, Johnson wrote to her followers that “K-LOVE has decided that they will not run any promos for my movie, Unplanned. So, a Christian radio network won’t advertise for a pro-life movie.”

Johnson added that the reason the listener-funded radio network, which is said to be flush with cash and valued at upwards of half-a-billion dollars, gave her for not promoting the film is that the subject of abortion is too “political.”

In a response to Johnson’s post, KLOVE claimed that it also does not promote “R” rated movies.

“We focus on positive and encouraging content that is safe for the whole family,” KLOVE posted on its Facebook page. “We stand for Biblical truth.We have been and continue to be pro-life and believe in the sanctity of life.”

But Johnson pointed out that the station has indeed advertised R-rated films in its past, in its promotion of Mel Gibson’s “Passion of the Christ” in 2004.

“They can’t seem to keep track of what they stand for,” wrote Johnson. She then urged supporters to contact KLOVE and voice their opinions.

“Unplanned” reportedly received the controversial R rating for just one scene, which depicts a computer-generated sonogram of an abortion. The Motion Picture Association of America has been heavily criticized for classifying the film as R, when it otherwise ought to have received a PG-13 rating. Supporters of the film say the R rating reflected an intentional attempt by the film industry to limit turn-out among Christians and teens.

The following day, Johnson posted an update on her Facebook page, saying that a KLOVE representative had met with one of the film’s producers and reversed the station’s position: “I have a wonderful update,” wrote Johnson. “KLOVE radio has decided to stand up for the unborn and promote Unplanned!

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Yet KLOVE has continued to remain silent about the film, and listeners have noticed.

“What a huge platform you’ve been given that could be a voice for the unborn with supporting the movie Unplanned,” a user named June Neal wrote on KLOVE’s Facebook page.

Johnson updated her Facebook followers a few days later. “I don’t think they are being honest,” she wrote about the station. “I don’t think they have any intention of promoting it. I don’t think it’s going to happen.”

Meanwhile various pro-life groups, such as Students for Life of America, have been working to promote Unplanned. Kristi Hamrick, a spokeswoman for SFLA, called KLOVE’s silence disappointing.

“They are making a big mistake by not paying attention to where the culture is at and, frankly, where their audience is at,” Hamrick said. “Abortion is tragic, and their audience wants this story to go out.”

KLOVE has not issued any further statements at this time.

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