On Celebrating the New York Times' Token Christian… Not So Fast

Over the weekend, I gleefully read and shared this Blaze article about Michael Luo, a proud Christian reporter at the New York Times.

Michael Luo, a deputy metropolitan editor at the New York Times, is a Bible-believing Christian who has proven that it’s entirely possible to hold onto one’s faith while working in a mainstream newsroom

Luo spoke to students at The King’s College, a Christian school in New York City, Thursday night about his decade-long career at the Times, perceived anti-evangelical bias and his struggle to balance journalistic ethics with open discussion about his biblical worldview.

My first clue that the story of a “Bible-believing Christian” at the New York Times was too good to be true should have been this quote:

“I’ve got to say the most overt hostility I’ve ever encountered as a reporter for the New York Times, more than Baghdad, more than presidential campaigns, more than taking on the gun lobby, was when I went to the Values Voters Summit in 2008,” [Luo] said.

Really?  The people the Times regularly attacks as homophobic, racist, sexist and generally backwards-thinking Americans were hostile?  No way!  And even more so than the Republicans the Times smear in every presidential campaign?  And even more than the big, bad gun lobby you regularly attack?  Crazy!  

Way to take a stand in the New York Times newsroom with your anti-gun, anti-conservative Christian work.  So brave.

I suspect his editors at the New York Times don’t mind his Christian beliefs when his defense of them contains a slew of right-wing stereotypes.  His struggle to balance media bias and his Christian beliefs is truly admirable. 

Of course, I don’t think all Christians have to be conservatives.  It just makes more sense when the other side touts abortion on demand, keeping people in poverty, perpetuating the victimhood of women, and putting belief in government at the center of their lives.  

Not surprisingly, Ann Coulter had Michael Luo (and the New York Times, in general) on her radar for years.  In her March 27, 2013 column, she noted Luo’s tirade against the NRA.

The New York Times caused a sensation with its kazillion-word, March 17 article by Michael Luo on the failures of state courts to get guns out of the hands of men in domestic violence situations.

The main purpose of the article was to tweak America’s oldest civil rights organization, the National Rifle Association, for opposing some of the more rash anti-gun proposals being considered by state legislatures, such as allowing courts to take away a person’s firearms solely on the basis of a temporary restraining order.

It’s a new position for liberals to oppose the rights of the accused. Usually the Times is demanding that even convicted criminals be given sex-change operations, weekend furloughs, early release and vegan meals in prison.

As the Times eventually admits around paragraph 400: “In fairness, it was not always clear that such an order (taking guns from the accused wife abuser) would have prevented the deaths.”

Then in her bestseller, Godless, Michael Luo pops up again.

In 2005, the New York Times triumphantly announced that the word “abortion” is not mentioned anywhere in the Bible. Marshalling its evidence, the Times notes that in the index to the Bible, one can find “how many times Jesus talked about the poor (at least a dozen), or what the Apostle Paul wrote about grace (a lot).” But those seeking instruction on abortion “will not find the word at all.”[1] 

 [1] Michael Luo, On Abortion, It’s the Bible Of Ambiguity The New York Times, November 13, 2005.

Coulter goes on to write:

These people are incapable of extrapolating anything about abortion from commands like, “Thou shalt not kill.” But they unmistakably see a right to abortion hidden in the “right to privacy” of the Constitution, which isn’t actually mentioned in the Constitution, either, but is said to be implicit in penumbras and emanations from the first, fourth, fifth, and ninth amendments, which are in the Constitution. I think “thou shalt not kill” is a lot closer to the subject that the privileges or immunities clause.

Christians like Luo remind me of Republicans like Meghan McCain.  They use their Christian or Republican persona to attack Christians and Republicans.  The Biblical warning of them is clearer than “thou shalt not kill.” 


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