Things Which Are Contributing to Secularism in America: The News Media
T. Doy Moyer
To secularize something means to make it worldly and unspiritual. It is to deprive something of religious character and spiritual influence and significance. This is precisely what has happened, and continues to happen, to America. The United States was founded upon religious and biblical principles. However, in this modern age, those principles have been swept away and replaced by the depraved principles of situation ethics, "values clarification," and general moral emptiness. Many factors have contributed to this, but one of the leading factors is, without question, the dominant news media.
The news media is a powerful factor in the thinking of people. They shape the world outlook of listeners. They are supposed to report news what's happening, the facts of events without being biased. That is far from reality. Instead, the dominant news media is making news, and putting their own perverted twists onto whatever news events they choose to report. They are leaders in the fight against Christianity and biblical principles. They reflect the thinking of the government, and support virtually any liberal decisions that are made by the government. Cal Thomas wrote: "The American government, once the protector and even reflector of religious tradition and thinking, has become an enemy of those with religious faith" (The Courier-Journal, Louisville, Kentucky, Dec. 12, 1992). The news media shares a glad hand in opposing religious thinking. One wrote that the "media assault upon religious believers has been fierce" (AFA Journal, June 1993, p. 24). Though this includes all of the media, it cannot be denied that the news media has joined the assault.
Undermining The Bible
One way in which the news media contributes to secularism is to report things that undermine the integrity of the Bible. They always seem to find room for reporting someone's study that says that the Bible is not what it's made out to be. For example, in December, 1992, a story made the front page of the Louisville Courier-Journal showing that an Episcopal Bishop questioned the historical accuracy of the gospel accounts of the virgin birth of Jesus. The Bishop John Shelby Spong argued that the story in the Bible "contains much theological truth but precious little historical fact. The account is unbelievable to modem, thinking Christians" (Dec. 23, 1992). Other statements are made which undermine the integrity of the accounts.
Now, I wonder why this made the front page of the newspaper? Though the story mentioned opposition to the position, there was no "fairness" (a word they are well familiar with) of time given to someone who could defend the integrity of the accounts. Thus, there is one more barb against the Bible. People see this and accept it without real question, and it gives them more reason not to believe the Bible.
In a December, 1992 addition of USA Weekend, the front page advertised an article on "Who Was Jesus?" The thrust of the article was to show all of the debate about who Jesus really was. It talks of the "Jesus Seminar" conducted by liberal theologians who have virtually no respect for the Bible. It's just one more piece added to the confusion that most people already experience.
News articles can be found almost daily that add skepticism to the Bible. Very few news articles can be found reflecting respect and defending the integrity of Scripture. This would not be the case if the news media were unbiased.
Every time the Bible is put down, secular humanism is built up. Let's be thankful that, in the end, the Bible will stand while all other systems will be put down (1 Pet. 1:22-25; 2 Cor. 10:3-5).
Calling Good Evil, And Evil Good
The media contributes to secularism by painting a good picture of sinful people and putting those with biblical convictions in a bad light. This is especially true when it comes to issues like abortion and homosexuality. In the news media, abortionists and homosexuals are pictured as good, compassionate and loving people. Those who op-pose these things are pictured as mean, unkind, radical, right-wing religious fanatics who don't know up from down.
For example, I have a copy of some video footage taken from a "gay" rights parade in San Francisco a couple of years ago ("The Gay Agenda"). What is seen is tasteless and obscene, but it shows the true character of so many n the homosexual community. Has this ever been shown in news coverage? No. If a statement is made, it is reported simply as being a gay-rights parade with perhaps hundreds of thousands in attendance. Nothing derogatory is said. Then, perhaps they will show some foaming-at-the-mouth religious leader condemning what is happening and making him look like the fool. The effect is that the homosexuals look like the "good guys," and those in opposition look like poor, pitiful idiots. The kind of scenario has occurred far too often to deny it. The slant in the media is, without question, pro-homosexual.
One recent news article had the headline: "Study linking genes to homosexuality doesn't alter religious leaders' stance." Immediately, we see the slant. Credence is automatically given to the "study," and religious leaders who oppose it look like they oppose scientific evidence. Many such articles can be found. Just read the papers. One writer, concerning the pro-homosexual bias in the news, correctly observed: "Editorials are running on the front-page disguised as news stories. And activists not reporters are writing the stories" (The Homosexual Cop in the News-room, by Joseph Farah, AFA Journal, June 1993, p. 17).
We see virtually the same thing when it comes to the abortion debate. Abortionists are given the air time, and they are made to look kind, compassionate, and rational, while those who oppose it are made to look like irrational fools. Anti-abortionists are given coverage, but it is usually coverage of them blocking clinics, screaming madly across a street, or, as took place not long ago, shooting an abortion doctor. This just makes anti-abortionists look like radical, mean-spirited fanatics who have no capacity for reason. Thus, the public's view of these people is perverted. And it is not difficult to notice that when the news media speaks of abortion, they speak in terms that show they believe that abortion is an axiomatic right for women. Terms like "pro-choice," and "right to choose" show this slant.
Isaiah wrote, "Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!" (5:20). This is exactly what is happening today, led by the dominant news media.
Perhaps the most perverted idea advocated by the news media today is that of "political correctness." This has to do with appeasing certain special-interest groups (such as homosexuals and abortionists) and offending as few people as possible (that is, those who do not believe the Bible). To be politically correct, we have to say certain things in the exact way that we have been told to by the media. For example, it is politically correct to say "pro-choice," but not so to say "pro-abortion." To be politically correct, one must support abortion, homosexuality, feminism, and whatever else those of left-wing ideology decide.
It is not politically correct to talk about the Bible. After all, that has been removed from classrooms and anything having to do with the government. Bible believers certainly have no sympathy from the dominant news media either. Consequently, to speak of things from a biblical worldview means that we will be called bigoted and hateful. This is all part of the slant. Anyone who does not bow to the demands of the politically correct are promptly condemned without a fair hearing. Of course, these same people, led by the media, are dogmatic in their support for the right to free speech. But in these days, freedom of speech means that you can say and do anything you want, as long as you do not do it with a moral standard such as the Bible. That would be pushing your morals on others; and that would be terrible. Meanwhile, the politically correct are pushing their version of morality on the rest of us, and many Christians are cowering in shame at their demands. It is time for us to stand up and fight the good fight of faith.
There is nothing wrong with reporting news. But to do so with a secular humanist agenda is another matter. In this case, the goal is not simply to report news: the goal is to influence the thinking of people so as to support the agenda. The dominant news media is a willing participant in this as activists take the positions of reporters. People watch and listen, and are affected greatly. All of this just goes to say, "Take heed how you hear."
Christians need to remember that our thinking must not be shaped by men. It must be shaped by God and his word (Col. 3:16). There is a real war going on, and we cannot ignore it. We must have minds trained to discern good and evil (Heb. 5:14). So, while we wade through coverage of news, let's make sure that we can separate actual news coverage from the biased advocacy of a liberal agenda. Remember: "Those who forsake the law praise the wicked, but such as keep the law contend with them" (Prov. 28:4).
Guardian of Truth XXXVIII: 12, p. 11-12