THE MEDIA’S NUANCE
“Why is it that the media regularly adorns the term ‘religious freedom’ with superfluous quotation marks but not terms like ‘environmentalist’ or ‘civil rights’ or ‘marriage equality’ — or any other of the many debatable issues of American political discourse?” writes David Harsanyi, senior editor of The Federalist and a syndicated columnist.
“Well, maybe unbiased journalists feel a responsibility to intimate to readers that religious freedom is considered a dubious assertion by one side of the debate. And this would be a reasonable editorial decision if it were employed consistently. It’s not. What’s more likely is that editors and journalists consider the term ‘religious freedom’ dubious because anything that strikes them as ‘discriminatory’ or stands in way of ‘progressive’ moral aims is by default illegitimate,” Mr. Harsanyi continues.
“The quotations marks themselves are not a big deal, of course, but they are a reflection how the topic is viewed by secular America and too-often covered by the media, which is to say very badly,” he adds.