The Corner

Worst Case

In one of the most egregious cases of media bias I have ever seen, Newsweek’s cover story on “The War Over Gay Marriage,” doesn’t even mention the proposed Federal Marriage Amendment. Naturally, the story is written from the point of view of advocates of gay marriage; opponents of same-sex marriage are caricatured; and secular arguments against gay marriage are not described. That is classic media bias. But surely even a biased story could have at least reported on the existence of the major legal step being advocated by opponents of gay marriage. Why was Matt Daniels, of the Alliance for Marriage (sponsor of the FMA), not interviewed? Most of the opponents of gay marriage mentioned by Newsweek are actually against the Federal Marriage Amendment, because it leaves decisions on civil unions and partnership benefits up to the states. So in effect, Newsweek has altogether missed a whole set of arguments and proposals (the most important ones) offered by opponents of gay marriage. Majority Leader Frist endorsed the Federal Marriage Amendment on Sunday. Yet Newsweek’s cover story the next day was entirely innocent of the proposal. And of course, National Review endorsed FMA two years ago. Our gay marriage debate of 2001 was kicked off by the announcement of the campaign for the Federal Marriage Amendment. So Newsweek has had plenty of time to follow this. A couple of years ago, in “The Silent Treatment,” I described the refusal of the mainstream press to report on the Federal Marriage Amendment. That hasn’t changed. But after Massachusetts, with prominent politicians like Frist endorsing FMA, I expect that the media will be forced to cover FMA. There’s something you can do to help. On Wednesday, July 2, (tomorrow) at noon ET, Debra Rosenberg, an author of the Newsweek cover will be online at Newsweek.MSNBC.com to discuss her story. You might want to tell her how much she’s missed.

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