Sowing confusion

I shall scrupulously report and interpret the news, taking care not to suppress essential facts or to distort the truth by omission or improper emphasis. I recognise the duty to air the other side and the duty to correct substantive errors promptly.

Journalist’s Code of Ethics, No. 1

SOMETIMES, the Philippine Daily Inquirer does not contribute in clarifying the debate surrounding the RH bill. Instead of making meanings of terms understandable, it seems to employ subtle deception to win its readers to the pro-RH bill stand.

For example, in “Women’s group PCW supports Aquino on family planning” (10/07/10), the first paragraph reads:

The Philippine Commission on Women (PCW) has expressed support to President Aquino’s stand on family planning and responsible parenthood.

It is as if pro-life advocates are not in favor of family planning and responsible parenthood.

The Inquirer seems to forget that there are two kinds of family planning: the one using artificial methods and the other using natural means. The Church advocates the latter, as the Inquirer is most probably aware of.

The Inquirer article also seems to insinuate that the Church is against responsible parenthood, when in fact the Church is among its staunchest advocates. Of course, the Church intends to promote responsible parenthood not through artificial birth control, but through a thorough education of conscience.

The article could have been truthful if it were to use terms in their correct sense. And if terms are ambiguous, the Inquirer should have done something to avoid confusion and seeming oppression of particular viewpoints.


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