When it turned out that Pennsylvania late-term abortionist Kermit Gosnell was guilty of even worse butchery than the average abortionist, in that he (inter alia) also killed the children who survived his attempted abortions as opposed to merely those who didn’t, the media was infamously disinterested. Even when it turned out that fully grown women had died as a result of Gosnell’s gross indifference to human life, the media could not even be bothered to attend his trial. Even when it turned out that he victimized poor women in particular, refusing to provide them adequate anesthesia for their procedures in the name of penny pinching, the “media” section of his courtroom was empty.

The media defended their indifference to Gosnell’s grisly crimes and his subsequent conviction on multiple homicide offenses by calling it a “local crime story” which was of course not worth their interest.

When Nidal Hasan went on a shooting rampage at Ft. Hood, killing 13 of his fellow soldiers because of his connections to Radical Islam, the media was largely silent about private facts about Hasan or what his motives might have been. This is true even though eyewitnesses claimed to the media that Hasan had advocated pouring boiling oil down the throats of infidels at a staff meeting, and there was significant evidence of connects to infamous al-Qaeda terrorist Anwar al-Awlaki. Most importantly, the government ultimately classified the deaths at Fort Hood as an incident of “workplace violence” rather than “domestic terrorism.”

Last Friday, a man named Robert Dear got involved in a shootout at a strip mall in Colorado Springs that happened to contain a Planned Parenthood. Three people were killed, including one police officer who was responding to the scene. Here is what we know about the shooter:

  1. He lived alone and apparently completely without electricity;
  2. One neighbor claims that Dear once tried to give him a pamphlet that was opposed to Obama, although what that pamphlet might have read or even the general gist was we don’t know since the neighbor by his own admission just used it as kindling for his fire;
  3. The few people who did regularly talk to him said that he was not religious and did not ever discuss abortion; and
  4. He showed up in court today looking, by all accounts, in a manner consistent with accounts of police at the scene; that is to say, in the manner of a man who is not in full control of his reasoning faculties;
  5. Activist journalist Wesley Lowery, whose mistakes in coverage during the Ferguson fiasco are too numerous to recount here claimed on twitter to have heard from a Planned Parenthood employee that a man who lived in a cabin with no electricity mentioned “no more Baby Parts” as he was escorted from the premises, indicating a surprising familiarity with an exclusively Internet phenomenon for a man with no electricity. Later when Lowery wrote his actual story for the Washington Post, the Planned Parenthood employee had become an “unnamed law enforcement source.”
  6. In subsequent media reports about the story, they referenced an “unnamed law enforcement source” who had heard the “Baby Parts” remark, without being tremendously clear whether they were reference an independent source of their own or just passing on Lowery’s remarks (knowing what I know of the media, a good amount of the latter occurred);
  7. Now virtually every media outlet is reporting as fact that Deal made the “Baby Parts” remarks in spite of the fact that literally no eyewitness has come forward by name and claimed to have heard this.

On the basis of these facts, the media has convicted this guy of being a card-carrying Operation Rescue who was at the clinic specifically for the purpose of killing an abortion provider – which, if he had succeeded, would have made him the second person this entire century to do so.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again; the most insidious form of media bias comes in terms of what the media decides to cover at all, not how the media decides to cover the story du jour. Definitely, there’s a lot to complain about in terms of the way the media is covering this story, but the main complaint should be that this is a story the media is covering as a big deal, or as a bigger deal than any of the several hundred tragic homicides that occurred elsewhere in America last Friday. If the suspected motivation for the killer had been that he was a radical Muslim, or that he was an abortionist who wanted to operate without reasonable oversight from the state (which is to say, pretty much all abortionists, as far as I can tell), they would have instead done their best to either bury the story all together or softpedal his supposed motivations, or (what would be eminently reasonable in this case) be much more cautious about even stating that the Planned Parenthood was the definitive target for his attacks.

But that’s the way it goes if the liberal sacred cow of abortion is even possibly under attack – magically, a story that would be described as either a “local crime story” or an incident of “workplace violence” becomes instead a “major story that every network will cover ceaselessly for three days.”