Correction Request: Government Radio Invents Facts to Protect Planned Parenthood

Earlier today BigGovernment.com, BigJournalism.com, and Breitbart.TV published a shocking video investigation from Lila Rose’s pro-life organization, Live Action, showing a Planned Parenthood employee advising a “pimp” on underage sex trafficking and secret abortions for minors The post had only been live for a few hours when NPR began to run interference for Planned Parenthood, the government-supported clinics widely known for counseling women on abortions. There are factual errors in the piece that NPR ought to address.

First, note the original headline of the NPR article:

The article by Eyder Peralta was originally given the title “Group Behind ACORN Undercover Videos, Sets Up Planned Parenthood ‘Sting.'” The ACORN investigation was conducted by James O’Keefe and Hannah Giles for O’Keefe’s Veritas Visuals organization, while the Planned Parenthood investigation released today was conducted by Lila Rose and her team at Live Action. Ms. Rose was not involved in the ACORN videos. NPR has since corrected the headline, which is especially convenient because we also take issue with their comma usage as well as their decision to use scare quotes around the word “sting.” The URL slug of the updated version of the post still contains the original headline:

http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2011/02/01/133403770/group-behind-acorn-undercover-videos-sets-up-planned-parenthood-sting

The folks at Live Action discreetly let NPR know they had mischaracterized the organization, and NPR obliged with a correction, but the fact that this error was made at all is extremely revealing. Live Action’s investigation clearly demonstrates a manager of a government-funded organization, trusted to abide by the law, advising young people to perform illegal (and immoral) activities, even offering tips to not get caught, yet NPR ran the story with the aforementioned headline. Their editorial staff used a false fact as an attempt to diminish Live Action’s findings, portraying the investigation in a controversial light instead of letting their audience simply see and hear the facts for themselves. While we appreciate the correction, this was a mistake that diligent and honest journalists never would have made.

But wait, there’s more.

NPR has since updated the headline to read “Conservative Group Sets Up Planned Parenthood ‘Sting.'” Live Action is a pro-life advocacy group and has never declared itself to be conservative. The sanctity of life is a complex moral issue that transcends boilerplate political labels and often unites liberals and conservatives; for example, Catholics are largely pro-life but tend to hold many positions considered “liberal.” This is another bogus headline that says more about NPR than it does about Live Action and their stellar work.

We request NPR correct this headline a second time.


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