The death of conservative icon Phyllis Schlafly set off the predictable leftist social media hatefest overnight, and naturally gave rise to a "graceless" obituary in the New York Times.
While it's a bit of a relief that Jim Salter's obituary at the Associated Press was not as hostile as the quite left-leaning wire service has been towards deceased conservatives in the past (e.g., Tony Snow in 2008), his writeup was seriously marred in several spots. The two most critical flaws involved labeling. Both are instructive, because the AP almost never uses equivalent labels for people on on the left side of the political spectrum, especially in obituaries.
New York Times obituary writer Douglas Martin penned Tuesday’s front-page goodbye to conservative legend Phyllis Schlafly, who died Monday at the age of 92: “‘First Lady’ of a Movement That Steered U.S. to the Right.” The Times and other media outlets generally file glowing obituaries for liberal figures, but Schlafly, the winner of the 2015 William F. Buckley Jr. Award for Media Excellence from the Media Research Center, received a hostile farewell -- a literal “hatchet job,” with Martin likening Schlafly to “ax-wielding prohibitionist Carry Nation” in the third sentence
Late Monday night, the group Eagle Forum released a statement that its founder, the Christian and conservative icon Phyllis Schlafly, had passed away at the age 92 and immediately, The New York Times published a story to serve as cue cards for the major broadcast networks to blast Schlafly for stymying the Equal Rights Amendment and advocating for traditional family values for decades. At the same time, others used the initial moments after the announcement to hurl venom that only the left could summon in reveling at her passing.
Universities have generated countless breakthroughs in science, technology, and medicine. Then there’s the product of higher education that Kevin Drum discussed in a Saturday post: “The first concrete movement toward gender-neutral bathrooms started at universities. Now it's becoming mainstream. Good work, idealistic college kids!"
Drum remarked that some current campus obsessions -- “safe spaces, microaggressions, trigger warnings” -- might be considered “dumb,” but added, “I've always found it hard to get too exercised about this stuff. These kids are 19 years old. They want to change the world. They're idealistic and maybe too impatient with anyone who doesn't want to move as fast as they do. So were you and I at that age. Frankly, if they didn't go a little overboard about social justice, I'd be worried about them.”
Conservative icon Phyllis Schlafly on Thursday accepted the “William F. Buckley Jr. Award for Media Excellence” at the 2015 Media Research Center Gala and DisHonors Awards. MRC President Brent Bozell lauded the profound and ongoing role Schlafly has in the conservative movement.
Far-left Amanda Marcotte launched her own war on women in a Thursday article for the Alternet website. Specifically, she targeted nine conservative women who, in her view, "have made a career out of opposing women's struggle for social, political and economic equality." Marcotte asserted that the nine "argue for continuing social systems that perpetuate women's inequality, male dominance, and even violence against women." The radical feminist's list of women "working tirelessly to screw over other women" included NewsBusters contributor Jill Stanek, author Christina Hoff Sommers, pro-life activist Lila Rose, and longtime conservative activist Phyllis Schlafly.
Media liberals are rooting for NBC’s two-gay-dads sitcom The New Normal. USA Today TV critic Robert Bianco made it number two on his favorite new shows: “For the most part, Normal plays like a lovely, small movie, mixing humorous moments with sweet, gentle grace notes.” Alessandra Stanley at The New York Times tries to make the bold statement: "Gay is the new straight."
Washington Post TV critic Hank Stuever is less impressed, given that its producer (Glee creator Ryan Murphy) tends to lose creative steam. But Stuever loves the “deliciously acid” Phyllis Schlafly character with Callista Gingrich hair:
MSNBC’s Ed Schultz on Tuesday badly mispronounced the last name of Constitutional lawyer and conservative activist Phyllis Schlafly.
Rather deliciously, this occurred in a segment wherein the pompous, know-it-all host was once again mocking the intellectual capacity of Congresswoman Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) and former Alaska governor Sarah Palin (video follows with partial transcript and commentary):
He saw this homeland for the first time in 51 years.
I've spent the last week on a fundraising cruise for National Review magazine. We dropped by the Cayman Islands, Grand Turk and Cozumel. (I gather there are harder jobs.) It was more than just people listening to seminars, meeting one another, sharing gratitude for people and principles they appreciate and hold dear.
And we passed by Cuba. A usual late-riser, our Cuban exile cruiser says he was given "a gift from God," when he found himself awake, to look out and see the country he fled as a youth. A flood of memories came back, and a dream that a future cruise might bring him home.
He was so grateful. Not bitter. Not sad. Just grateful.
On Friday’s The Ed Show on MSNBC, host Ed Schultz trashed conservative activist Phyllis Schlafly, repeatedly mispronouncing her name as "Schafly," for linking being a single woman and having a greater likelihood of depending on government programs, as she noted at a recent GOP fundraiser that 70 percent of single women voted for Barack Obama. At the top of the show, Schultz teased: "I`ve got some choice words for the ‘Wicked Witch of the Midwest’ tonight – and that`s what she is." He later plugged before a commercial break: "Speaking of ‘Psycho Talkers,’ ‘Wicked Witch of the Midwest’ Phyllis Schafly [sic] got off her broomstick long enough to take a shot at unmarried women of America."
Later in the show, after conservative talk radio host Heidi Harris had appeared in a segment to defend Schlafly, Daily Show co-creator and regular guest Lizz Winstead appeared for the "Club Ed" segment and bashed Harris as "that teabagging Carol Brady," advising Schultz that "you have got to slam her down when she is absolutely wrong." After the Daily Show co-creator went on to charge that Schlafly "can empty her bowels through her mouth and just exhaust horrifying crap onto the universe," an impressed Schultz laughed and cheered her on as he seemed to refer to Winstead’s rant declaring, "That’s great stuff":
To parents working to raise their children and teens in a world inundated with so much media - from video games to movies to music to the thousands of youth-oriented books published each year - a little help from experts is welcome.
So news that the American Library Association will announce its 2010 Youth Media Awards in just a couple of weeks should be good news for those who want to enrich their kids' cultural and intellectual lives, right? Just read what the ALA Web site has to say about the awards:
Recognized worldwide for the high quality they represent, the ALA Youth Media Awards guide parents, educators, librarians and others in selecting the best materials for youth. Selected by committees composed of librarians and other literature and media experts, the awards encourage original and creative work in the field of children's and young adult literature and media.
But in the case of the Youth Media Awards, the ALA's "librarians and other literature and media experts" have a very different conception of the "best materials for youth" than most parents. The ALA has a public social and political agenda that endorses same-sex marriage, and who's agenda is glaringly reflected in the books it chooses to award and those it chooses to ignore, or even - yes - ban.