Although the news on the controversial Planned Parenthood selling-baby-parts videos, PP’s web site and various legal maneuvers blocking the videos seems to be changing by the hour, I chose to take on a Sacramento Bee story released Tuesday. Call it a short-term GetReligion folder-of-guilt thing.
The headline: “New Planned Parenthood Controversy: Same Old Abortion Debate,” is an eyebrow raiser. Would the Bee say the following about the recently famous Cecil the Lion: “Freshly Killed Lion, Same Old Animal Rights Debate”? Really?
Before even reading the article, one gets a hint of the newspaper's take on this hot-button topic. Then:
Anti-abortion activists rallied in cities across the country in recent days, invigorated by the release of videos showing Planned Parenthood officials discussing the procurement of fetal tissue for research. For the activists, the videos provided a new -- and still unfolding -- source of indignation. They accuse Planned Parenthood of profiting from the sale of aborted fetuses, a claim Planned Parenthood denies.
In Washington, Republicans called on Congress to withhold federal funding for Planned Parenthood, and GOP lawmakers in several states opened investigations of their own. Democrats pushed back by focusing scrutiny on the producer of the videos, a 26-year-old man involved in anti-abortion causes since his high school days in Davis.
But on the sidewalks outside Planned Parenthood clinics, familiar strokes of the anti-abortion movement -- wooden rosaries, amplifiers, faded signs telling women “it’s not too late to change your mind” -- belied the activists’ deeper hope that controversial videos might change people’s minds more broadly on abortion.
In that effort, there has been little evidence of success.
Much of the story is about David Daleiden, who attended a high school in Davis, about 15 miles west of Sacramento. Daleiden founded the Center for Medical Progress, which is releasing the videos.
As regular news-consumers know, all news is local. Even as the local newspaper, the Bee doesn’t go to great lengths to look into Daleiden, who they said didn’t respond to requests for interviews.