Matthew Balan

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Contributing Writer


Matthew Balan was a news analyst at Media Research Center from February 2007 until February 2017. Previously, he worked for the Heritage Foundation from 2003 until 2006, and for Human Life International in 2006. He is an alumnus of the University of Delaware.

Latest from Matthew Balan

NPR's All Things Considered on Thursday promoted an activist's own spin about her abortion campaign in Ireland, which likened the cause to the 19th-century effort that helped slaves escape bondage in the Southern United States. Lauren Frayer spotlighted how "there's a sort of modern-day underground railroad discreetly shuttling thousands of Irish women to abortion clinics" outside of the Emerald Isle. This is the same phrase that Mara Clarke of the Abortion Support Network used during a soundbite later in Frayer's report: "You could call it an underground railroad. I prefer to think of it as sisters doing it for themselves."



On Friday, NBC's Ken Dilanian praised Washington Post editor Ruth Marcus on Twitter for her "courageous" column that defended the "right" of women to abort their unborn babies if they have Down syndrome. Dilanian underlined his agreement with Marcus after another Twitter user cited how his child has the genetic condition: "And you made the right choice for you—a choice to be celebrated and respected...She [Marcus] is affirming her legal right to make a different choice for her own family."



NPR couldn't be bothered to include pro-gun rights talking heads in their Monday coverage of boycotts targeting the National Rifle Association and gun manufacturers. Morning Edition featured pro-gun control activist Shannon Watts during their report on the "more than a dozen companies...cutting ties with the National Rifle Association." However, the program merely read an excerpt from a NRA statement responding to the corporate moves. Hours later, All Things Considered turned to two gun control supporters — California state treasurer John Chiang and Avery Gardiner of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence — during a segment on the anti-gun manufacturers campaign. The evening newscast followed its sister program's lead in leaving out gun rights suppporters from the report.



Raoul Peck, the director of the new film, The Young Karl Marx, acclaimed the 19th-century radical leftist on Sunday's All Things Considered on NPR: "Today, his [Marx's] analyses are even more urgent and necessary than before." Anchor Sarah McCammon pointed out, "But hasn't this been tried before many times? I mean, Marx's ideas pervaded, for instance, the Soviet Union." Peck denied this historic reality: "It did not influence the Soviet Union. Marx and Engels would have probably been the first one to be shot....this incredible monster that was fabricated after the Russian Revolution has nothing to do with their ideas."



The Intercept's Peter Maass hyped on Saturday that the war film 12 Strong is just latest example of "problematic" Hollywood productions that "model a cliched form of masculinity that veers from simplistic to monstrous." Maass, a former journalist for the New York Times, lobbied the movie industry to "turn away from war movies that...perpetuate a model of masculinity that does violence to us all." He later asserted that many of the successful military-centric films were "masculine nonsense."



On Friday, Glamour magazine's Evelyn Wang marveled over a leftist's eyebrow-raising edit of the critically-acclaimed war film Saving Private Ryan. The activist created a two-minute-long "manfree" version of the Academy Award-winning movie in response to a "douche who edited all the women out of #TheLastJedi." Wang touted how "the new cut...has since achieved viral acclaim," and hyped the creator's "solid sophomore...edit of The Shawshank Redemption....Beautiful."



NPR's All Things Considered on Thursday zeroed in on a pro-life organization that tries to get the employees of abortion facilities to end their participation in the killing of unborn babies. Despite the surprising attention on former Planned Parenthood manager Abby Johnson and her group, And Then There Were None, the public radio program still inserted slanted language into their report. Sarah McCammon labeled the organization an "anti-abortion group." McCammon later noted that Johnson has "gradually been embraced by the anti-abortion rights movement."



Professor Travis Reider of Johns Hopkins University boosted population control as a solution for climate change in a Wednesday op-ed for NBCNews.com. Reider, an assistant director at the school's Berman Institute of Bioethics, hyped that "having a child is a major contributor to climate change," and asserted that "the logical takeaway here is that everyone on Earth ought to consider having fewer children."



AP's David Crary filed a slanted report on Thursday that spotlighted the complaints of left-wing organizations regarding hate crime laws that, in their view, are "rarely used to prosecute the slayings" of "transgender" individuals. Crary zeroed in on a murder case in Missouri where " a transgender teen...was stabbed in the genitals." He used the homicide as a jumping-off point to cite several activists, who bemoaned that the "[hate crime] provisions have led to few prosecutions."



Jay Reeves and Kim Chandler did their best to portray Republican Senate candidate Roy Moore as an extremist in a Wednesday item for the Associated Press. The pair led their report by playing up that Moore "wouldn’t stand a chance in many Senate races after defying federal court orders, describing Islam as a false religion, calling homosexuality evil and pulling out a revolver on stage before hundreds of supporters."



NPR's Eric Deggans fawned over the "triumph" of the new TV series, Star Trek: Discovery, on Monday's All Things Considered. Despite his praise for the "diversity" in this latest installment in the sci-fi franchise, Deggans still managed to jab at it from the left by noting that "it was odd as a black man to see the bad guy T'Kuvma and many of his followers were the darkest-colored Klingons we've seen yet, as if darkening their complexion makes them more menacing." The TV critic also boosted a media talking point that connects Discovery's villain to President Donald Trump.



Former CNN personality Piers Morgan and co-host Susanna Reid hounded a Conservative member of the British Parliament on ITV's Good Morning Britain on Wednesday over his Catholic views on sexuality and abortion. The pair wouldn't accept Jacob Rees-Mogg's repeated affirmation that he "support(s) the teaching of the Catholic Church" on traditional marriage, and badgered him to explicitly say he opposed same-sex "marriage." The anchors also challenged Rees-Mogg's unequivocal stance against abortion, even in cases of rape and incest.



Samantha Schmidt's Thursday item for The Washington Post played up how the Los Angeles City Council voted on Wednesday to rename Columbus Day as "Indigenous Peoples Day." Schmidt boosted a wild statement from the proposal's sponsor, Councilman Mitch O'Farrell, who denigrated the holiday: "As statues aggrandizing the Confederacy topple across the South, so too should this symbol of oppression and genocide."



Tuesday's All Things Considered on NPR aired two segments that took shots at President Donald Trump and Senator Ted Cruz's handling of the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey. Both reports featured talking heads from liberal organizations, but didn't explicitly mention their ideological stance. By contast, the segments clearly identified specific individual and groups as "conservative." 



On Tuesday, Joshua Goodman of the Associated Press trumpeted that the economic "misery is likely to get even worse" in Venezuela due to new sanctions implemented by the Trump administration. Goodman acknowledged that the South American country is becoming "increasingly authoritarian," but didn't once describe the regime of President Nicolas Maduro as left-wing. He also cited an expert who asserted that possible additional sanctions might "throw Venezuela back to the stone ages."



Seth Borenstein touted in a Tuesday report for the Associated Press that some scientists believe that Hurricane Harvey is a "soggy, record-breaking glimpse of the wet and wild future that global warming could bring." Even after acknowledging that these climate researchers are "quick to say that climate change didn't cause Harvey and...haven't determined yet whether the storm was made worse by global warming," Borenstein underlined that they believe that "warmer air and water mean wetter and possibly more intense hurricanes in the future."



On Sunday, Salon's Jefferson Morley contended that the United States adopted the "Star Spangled Banner" as its national anthem due to an ascendant "neo-Confederate spirit" during the decades after the Civil War. Morley played up that "observing Memorial Day and singing 'The Star-Spangled Banner' are uncontroversial patriotic gestures, yet there is no disputing that neo-Confederates developed these rituals."



NPR's Weekend Edition Sunday zeroed in on conservative California residents who are leaving the Golden State for Texas due to the left-of-center political climate. The public radio program highlighted a former Californian's business of "connecting [California] families with realtors on the buying and selling ends; helping them move; and taking a commission for it." However, correspondent Vanessa Romo wondered if there were "downsides" to his enterprise of "encouraging people to stick with their own kind [and] discouraging them from having neighbors with different points of view."



Friday's Morning Edition on NPR hyped two "far-right" protests planned in the San Francisco Bay Area on Saturday and Sunday. However, the public radio network improperly labeled Patriot Prayer, the group behind one of the demonstrations, as "alt-right." In fact, the controversial liberal Southern Poverty Law Center "does not list Patriot Prayer as such, nor is [founder Joey] Gibson considered an extremist," acccording to a Wednesday report from The Mercury News.



On Wednesday, NPR's Morning Edition surprisingly featured former U.N. Ambassador Andrew Young, who opposes the dismantling of Confederate memorials across the United States. Young, a close associate of Martin Luther King, contended that the controversy was "a total distraction that is undercutting most of the progress we made." Journalist Ailsa Chang zeroed in on the Confederate sculpture on Stone Mountain in Georgia and pointed out that "a lot of Black Lives Matter activists would probably disagree with you."