LATimes shreds old-school language in religious liberty story

The following information cannot be examined too many times during the media storm that has followed the so-called Hobby Lobby decision by the U.S. Supreme Court. Back in 1993, early in the right-wing reign of terror led by the Clinton White House, the U.S. Senate voted 97-3 to pass the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. The [Read More...]

Back in Boston with abortion protesters and fair reporting!

I wasn’t expecting gifts for July 4 weekend, but I feel like I got one in this feature story in the Los Angeles Times. It’s a follow-up on the Supreme Court’s recent decision that overturned a law in Massachusetts meant to keep protesters away from abortion clinics. The article is a good example of old-school [Read More...]

Mormon reformin’: Putting the antics in semantics

Welcome to the Latter-day Saints Trivia Game! Here is today’s question: When did the Mormon Church ordain women? Tick … Tick … Tick … Tick … Ding! Sorry, time’s up. But it’s a trick question anyway. The Mormon Church has never ordained women. Dumb question, you say? Then you may know Mormon history better than [Read More...]

Faith and fitness: LATimes explores God’s role in weight loss

There’s a healthy dose of religion news on the front page of today’s Los Angeles Times. “God is their fitness co-pilot,” proclaims the print headline on this Column One feature. The online version goes with “Cross training” (get it?). Believe it or not, there’s no mention of that Northwestern University study from a few years [Read More...]

Was Kabul shooting over religion? Shouldn’t someone ask?

Q: What question has no answer? A: The one you don’t ask. In Thursday’s shooting of several people at a Christian hospital in Kabul, the question would be: Could it have anything to do with their religion? True, the answer doesn’t rest neatly on the surface. The shooter — horrifically, a policeman assigned to guard [Read More...]

Codewords are much easier to find than Waldo

Before dissecting this MSNBC story, let’s pause for a round of Spot the Codewords. Start at the top left of the screenshot above. There’s “equality,” an oft-cited banner of gay rights and same-sex marriage, as common as the familiar striped gay pride flag. Now, the headline: “Anti-gay activists.” Who wants to be anti- anything? The [Read More...]

Pentecostal gap in that LATimes immigration reform story

There was an important interfaith gathering the other day in Los Angeles that allowed some highly symbolic religious leaders to make a faith-based appeal for immigration reform. As you would expect, The Los Angeles Times produced a short news story that focused on the basic facts. The double-decker headline pronounced: Local religious leaders unite for [Read More...]

How not to cover a Bible Belt sex-education debate

Let’s assume that many if not most professionals in an elite newsroom in Southern California — The Los Angeles Times, perhaps — will be tempted to believe that they know more about sex than most parents and educators in the Bible Belt state of Mississippi. Safe assumption? My goal here is not to settle that [Read More...]


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