The Mosul purge: How good is the media coverage?

The purge of Christians from Mosul in northern Iraq — home to thriving Christian communities almost since biblical times — is a historic human rights abuse. Yet mainstream media have done comparatively little coverage on it, probably because they’re stretched thin with the twin stories of the airline shoot-down in Ukraine and Israel’s invasion of [Read More...]

For Cologne archbishop, Reuters emits a scent of bias

The new archbishop of Cologne, Germany, is all about gays. At least it is, according to a Reuters story on the transfer of Cardinal Rainer Maria Woelki there from Berlin. A full 203 of the story’s 430 words deal with what he thinks, or says, or what Reuters thinks he says, about homosexuality: But Woekli [Read More...]

Latin Mass: Why did NYTimes avoid rite’s liberal enemies?

There is this old, old, old saying that you will often hear quoted in discussions of worship trends in the modern and postmodern Catholic church. It goes like this. Question: What is the difference between a liturgist and a terrorist? Answer: You can negotiate with a terrorist. Now, you either get that joke or you [Read More...]

Pope’s abuse apology: Media did a fair job, surprisingly

Mainstream media didn’t pile onto Pope Francis. I know that sounds cynical — something like “Johnny’s trumpet recital didn’t suck!” — but in the story of Francis’ personal apology to victims of priestly abuse, reporters actually reported. They left pontifications to the pontiff. Francis, of course, has apologized before for the abuses that his predecessors [Read More...]

Headline writers duck and cover when Francis improvises

It must be very hard to be a headline writer in the age of Pope Francis. I mean, the man serves up — during his off-the-cuff homilies and chats — a wealth of material that simply screams, “You must put this phrase in a headline because it sounds amazing.” The only problem is that this [Read More...]

Was Catholic ‘teaching’ involved in latest Ireland scandal?

If I have heard this statement once at pro-life rallies I have heard it a hundred times: There are crisis pregnancies, but there is no such thing — in the eyes of God — as an unwanted child. This statement is especially popular with doctrinally conservative Catholics. So, try to combine that thought with the [Read More...]

Is Cardinal Dolan’s star fading? NYTimes ‘somes’ it up

I’ve just made up a rule for reading news: The confidence a writer places in an article is inversely proportional to the number of times he/she uses “some.” Such words often substitute for actual findings. I know, because I occasionally did it myself as a reporter. But I’m not sure I used it six times [Read More...]

NPR asks Vatican experts to discuss hopes of the Orthodox

Try to imagine a story about crucial, tense talks between Democrats and Republicans that only offered material drawn from interviews with Republicans, even when talking about the beliefs and aspirations of the Democrats. Try to imagine a report about, oh, talks between liberal Episcopalians and conservative Anglicans that only featured commentary from one side or [Read More...]


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