The one-sided story of gay marriage

 

The Washington Post

Back in March, when gay-marriage issues exploded upon the Supreme Court, National Organization for Marriage President Brian Brown didn’t appreciate how the media covered the news. His ideological brethren had to fight to get their views into stories in newspapers, online and on television.

Included in Brown’s list of hard-to-crack outlets was this: “I think on the cable networks, the coverage has not been great at all. Even on Fox News, we find it difficult to get broadcast time airing our views.”

Nearly three months later, a study by the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism (PEJ) has completed a close examination of how the media covered the issue. The principal finding? Detractors of gay marriage couldn’t buy their way into the coverage. Well, that’s the unscientific way of putting things. Here’s how the PEJ puts it: “Almost half [47 percent] of the nearly 500 stories studied from March 18 (a week prior to the Supreme Court hearings), through May 12, primarily focused on support for the measure, while 9 [percent] largely focused on opposition and 44 [percen] had a roughly equal mix of both viewpoints or were neutral.”

The largely supportive media coverage of same-sex marriage piggybacked on polling results indicating that more and more Americans are embracing the practice.

One Pew chart established that organizations across all kinds of media categories ran stories highly favorable of gay marriage: network news, cable news, NPR and so on.

Given that disparity, you might expect that a guy like Rush Limbaugh would help to equalize things in favor of traditional marriage. But not particularly — the numbers show that of the nine Limbaugh segments evaluated, two-thirds were neutral! How’s that possible? Limbaugh, after all, is the guy who has drawn associations between homosexuality and pedophilia. We may have to fact-check that one.

© 2013, The Washington Post

Read more From Our Inbox stories from the Miami Herald

  • Why the impeachment chatter continues

    If Republicans want to know why Democrats are talking incessantly about impeachment, even fundraising off the possibility, they need only look to themselves. The GOP leadership has resisted every opportunity to kill the idea. Sure, House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, called it “all a scam started by Democrats at the White House,” before adding, “We have no plans to impeach the president. We have no future plans.” But that’s cold comfort given his use of the present tense and his demonstrated inability to keep his calamitous caucus in line.

  • Polling trends that matter

    Recent polling for the 2014 midterms and beyond is plentiful but not always illuminating. There are two exceptions to this: polls that show a consensus for a trend/wave election and dramatic movement toward a particular candidate.

  • A GOP ultimatum to Vlad

    With the party united, the odds are now at least even that the GOP will not only hold the House but also capture the Senate in November.

Miami Herald

Join the
Discussion

The Miami Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

The Miami Herald uses Facebook's commenting system. You need to log in with a Facebook account in order to comment. If you have questions about commenting with your Facebook account, click here.

Have a news tip? You can send it anonymously. Click here to send us your tip - or - consider joining the Public Insight Network and become a source for The Miami Herald and el Nuevo Herald.

Hide Comments

This affects comments on all stories.

Cancel OK

  • Marketplace

Today's Circulars

  • Quick Job Search

Enter Keyword(s) Enter City Select a State Select a Category