In today's society, abortion rates are on the rise and don't look like slowing down anytime soon; at least that's what people say right? According to the Guttmacher Institute, abortion rates have been steadily declining since 2011. It's easy for people to be manipulated into mistaking opinion for facts nowadays. People get their news from media outlets that all have different agendas, and are trying to impose their political views on their audience.
In 2015, Fox business reporter Sandra Smith conducted an interview with Mike Huckabee to discuss his views on abortion. Huckabee referred to Planned Parenthood as “an industry of abortion” and supported the government’s decision to cut their funding. Smith completely agreed, saying “95% of all their pregnancy services were abortion”, misleading her audience. Smith arrived at her figure by including parental services, adoption referrals, and abortions, making her statistic false.
Planned Parenthood is more then just a clinic that offers abortion services; they provide cancer screenings and prevention, STD testing and treatment, contraceptives, and other women's health care services. Anti-Abortion supporters can't acknowledge the positive serves Planned Parenthood provides, and in turn spread lies to convince society that they are a disease that needs to be eradicated. It is easy to manipulate the truth to fit one’s agenda, and Smith isn't the only one to exaggerate information so it may correspond with her personal beliefs.
The Center for Medical Progress, an anti-abortion organization released videos using a hidden camera in 2015. Members of this organization gained access to abortion providers and facilities, by acting as representatives of a biotechnology company. The videos lead viewers to believe planned parenthood was selling fetal tissue to researchers. Theses videos went viral, and news channels were discussing them without any second thoughts. Many media outlets were passing them off as factual evidence without delving deeper into their origin. However, commercial research and strategic intelligence firm Fusion GPS decided to investigate further, and found these videos to be fabricated. Authorities did there own review of these videos as a direct result of Fusion's analysis, duplicating their result.
Those videos convinced Robert Dear Jr. that Planned Parenthood was profiting off of aborted fetuses, which made him take matters into his own hands. On November 27, 2015, he shot up a Planned Parenthood facility in Colorado, killing three, and injuring nine. He murdered a police office, an army veteran and a mother of two, that were in the area at the time. He defended himself by saying he was "a warrior for the babies" and showed no remorse for his actions. The judge ordered a metal evaluation and the defendant was found to be incompetent to stand trial. All of this madness could've been avoided if news outlets researched the videos, before stating them as factual.
The media has a responsibility to educate viewers, giving them only accurate information, but news sources rarely do this anymore. Nowadays, it is increasingly difficult to obtain the whole story from one source. This subsequently misleads the public to make underdeveloped opinions. Media outlets need to start putting their platforms to better use, and stop deceiving the public.
"Planned Parenthood 2015 Undercover Videos Controversy." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 28 Apr. 2017. Web. 29 Apr. 2017.
"Fox Business Reporter: 95% of Planned Parenthood's 'pregnancy Services' Were Abortions." @politifact. N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Apr. 2017.
Hughes, Trevor. "Planned Parenthood Shooter 'happy' with His Attack." USA Today. Gannett Satellite Information Network, 12 Apr. 2016. Web. 01 May 2017.
Strickland, Ashley. "Planned Parenthood: Fast Facts and Revealing Numbers." CNN. Cable News Network, 17 Jan. 2017. Web. 01 May 2017.