Super Bowl Bias

Super Bowl Bias

There's been much controversy lately about CBS's decision to air an anti-choice commercial from Focus on the Family during the Super Bowl tomorrow. While CBS has no problem with an anti-choice message being promoted on their air-waves (hell, they even helped craft the ad!) they nixed a commercial for gay dating site ManCrunch.

CBS says the ManCrunch ad didn't meet network standards. Two consenting adults kissing in a not particularly racy way doesn't meet network standards? Isn't that the key ingredient that soap operas are made of? In fact, CBS made television history in 2007 when their soap As the World Turns became the first to broadcast a kiss between two men on daytime network TV—and then the first to show a male couple post-coital.

So what happened to progress, CBS? Oh, what an ugly mess of intolerance and paternalism!

But here's a commercial that's message I can totally get behind—check out professional football player Sean James and Olympic gold medalist Al Joyner speaking up about “trusting women with their own choices” in response to the upcoming anti-choice Super Bowl ad.

Some abortion stats & info:

* “Legal restrictions on abortion do not affect its incidence. For example, the abortion rate is 29 in Africa, where abortion is illegal in many circumstances in most countries, and it is 28 in Europe, where abortion is generally permitted on broad grounds. The lowest rates in the world are in Western and Northern Europe, where abortion is accessible with few restrictions.”

* “Nearly half of pregnancies among American women are unintended, and four in 10 of these are terminated by abortion.”

* “Where abortion is legal and permitted on broad grounds, it is generally safe, and where it is illegal in many circumstances, it is often unsafe. For example, in South Africa, the incidence of infection resulting from abortion decreased by 52% after the abortion law was liberalized in 1996.”

* “A broad cross section of U.S. women have abortions:
—56% of women having abortions are in their 20s
—61% have one or more children
—67% have never married
—57% are economically disadvantaged
—88% live in a metropolitan area
—78% report a religious affiliation”

“An estimated 20 million unsafe abortions occurred in 2003, 97% of these in developing regions...Nearly half of all induced abortions are unsafe, putting the lives and health of women at major risk. Each year, about 70,000 women die due to unsafe abortion and an additional five million suffer permanent or temporary disability.”

Read yet more abortion facts from the * Guttmacher Institute.

Read sex ed site Scarleteen's article * Abortion—what it is, how it happens, what it feels like, how to deal—in plain type.
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