The Aspen Ideas Festival has a reputation of being an elitist conclave of liberal academics, journalists, and pundits (with rare exceptions) to pat themselves on the back and how they could work together to advance their left-of-center worldviews. So it was no surprise when the late June gathering held a June 27 panel called “How We Survive Attacks on Journalism” and featured a who’s who from the liberal media.
Conservative attorney Gayle Trotter was invited to sit in the "conservative" analyst seat in NPR's Week in Politics segment on Friday's All Things Considered, and shocked anchor Audie Cornish by identifying socialist Democrat Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez as part of the "Venezuelan wing of the Democratic Party." Cornish said she had to "pause for that," and then laughed at her. It wasn't an "objective" laugh.
Appearing as a guest on Friday's MSNBC Live, NPR's Maria Hinojosa informed host Stephanie Ruhle that much of what liberals having been criticizing about President Donald Trump's detention of illegal immigrants is not much different from what was already being done during the Obama administration, in spite of the liberal media only just recently giving it attention. At one point, Hinojosa even corrected Ruhle when the MSNBC host claimed that children had not previously had to speak for themselves without an attorney in immigration court.
A Friday article from NPR drew attention to three teenaged artists, whose politically-charged work were recently featured at the headquarters of the U.S. Department of Education. L.A. Johnson detailed how a non-profit organization chose the creative activists as part of an exhibit that "gathered the work of student artists" on the subjects of "empathy, tolerance and acceptance." Johnson interviewed the three artists on their "queer" poetry, "androgynous" painting, and portraits memorializing victims of police violence.
Tuesday's All Things Considered on NPR targeted the Supreme Court's decision that upheld President Donald Trump's travel ban. Host Mary Louise Kelly touted that "the Court's conservatives plac[ed] few limits on presidential power" on the issue. Nina Totenburg lined up three legal experts who all expressed "distinct disappointment" in the high court's ruling. Totenburg also spotlighted that the first version of the ban caused "chaotic scenes in airports across the globe."
The media are very worried about Justice Kennedy leaving for one main reason: abortion. On Wednesday, Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy announced his retirement. The media immediately expressed fury that, with a pro-life judge as replacement, Roe v. Wade might be overturned. The 1973 Supreme Court decision legalized abortion on a federal level in the United States. Overturning it would leave abortion up to the states – but media figures from The New Yorker to Salon warned about abortion vanishing.
It was a huge win for the First Amendment and for the pro-life movement. The Supreme Court ruled on Tuesday in NIFLA v. Becarra that California cannot mandate that pro-life crisis pregnancy centers give out abortion information at their clinics. The two sides of the abortion debate had different reactions to this ruling. Guess which side the media went with?
NPR shamelessly slanted leftward on Weekend Edition Sunday, with a segment that spotlighted a drag show in Vermont that was sponsored by a local veterans hospital. Correspondent Britta Greene zeroed in on a VA social worker who "transformed into his drag persona, Britney Queers, in a plaid miniskirt and long blonde braids." Greene also emphasized a claim that "the effects of 'don't ask, don't tell' and bans on transgender service linger," despite this outreach to LGBT veterans.
National Public Radio touts itself as an oasis of civility. But the calm tones of its announcers belie a dramatic liberal tilt. On Thursday's Morning Edition, longtime Supreme Court reporter Nina Totenberg touted the "quiet rage" and even "bad-assery" of Sen. Mazie Hirono, Democrat of Hawaii (lifetime American Conservative Union rating: 0.73 percent). She said to people who call her liberal, "F--- them."
Havard Professor Khalil Muhammad claimed on NPR's Weekend Edition Sunday that President Donald Trump is a "really big part of the problem" for a spate of recent incidents where "white people [call] the police on people of color for insignificant reasons," as host Lulu Garcia-Navarro put it. Muhammad summaried the issue as "a problem of white fear being weaponized." Garcia-Navarro wondered if "the base of this...is a sort of cultural conversation that says black people in white spaces means there's something criminal going on."
On Thursday's All Things Considered, NPR predictably hyped the impact of scandals involving the Catholic Church during their coverage of Ireland's abortion vote. Correspondent Alice Fordham noted that "during this ferociously noisy national debate [over abortion], the Church's role has seemed muted." She emphasized that "the Church's credibility in Ireland has suffered, after investigations uncovered child abuse and institutional abuse of unmarried mothers." Fordham later underlined that "many of those affected by the...abuses hope this referendum will mark a decisive defeat" for the Church.
On Thursday night’s All In, the media’s mangling of President Trump’s description of immigrant gang members as “animals” was buried under a flood of hyperbole about genocide from NPR host Maria Hinojosa. Somehow, Hinojosa cartooned Trump into saying every foreign-born person in America is an “animal” (including his wife), and then wildly compared his statement to the Rwandan genocide of the Tutsis. So much for NPR as your taxpayer-funded oasis of sanity.