Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Who's obtuse and out of touch?


To continue the theme of talking about “Friday Night Lights”, I have to link this review of the abortion episode from the New York Times, because it had such a beautiful distillation of what’s so wrong with the way abortion is treated in the mainstream media.
What was striking about the exploration of Becky’s circumstance on “Friday Night Lights” was the extent to which the opposing view was depicted as obtuse and out of touch. Two years ago an anonymous young woman ultimately received an abortion on “Private Practice” but not before an hour of television had passed which felt less like drama and more like journalism — sound, balanced and fair — with all relevant moral positions respectfully represented.
It’s one of those glistening moments when they admit that being “balanced” and catering to right wing nuts will always and forever be considered more important than being honest and accurate. And suggesting that “journalism” has some obligation to work PR for wingnuts that comes before its obligations to the public to be informative and, again, accurate. Because an accurate portrayal of the anti-choice movement would result in one where they come across as obtuse and out-of-touch, because that’s what they are. It’s almost definitional---anyone who waves off the struggles of a pregnant 15-year-old and suggests that it will all work out in the end is someone who has deliberately made herself unable to relate to the problems of her fellow human beings, because her dedication to the patriarchy is so strong. Anyone who puts an embryo over a living, breathing human being but refuses to admit that’s what she’s doing and turns herself into pretzels trying to rationalize that is obtuse by definition. Anyone willing to promote anti-choice lie because that’s what they wish was true is obtuse and out-of-touch at best. That’s the generous interpretation---that they’re fuddy-duddies who don’t know any better. In many cases, it’s worse than that, and they’re just sadistic assholes.



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