By Dave Andrusko
It’s funny how seemingly disparate stories—when seen as part of a bigger picture–can come together to reveal a startling truth.
First, there is NARAL, ever, EVER on the hunt to put crisis pregnancy centers out of business. Follow this carefully, because it illustrates just how dishonest these folks are.
Something called “The Switch: Where technology and policy connect” appears in the Washington Post. Well, today Havley Tsukayama reports that NARAL had successfully “lobbied” Google to take down ads for “some” crisis pregnancy centers,” which, NARAL argues its investigation proves, “violate Google’s policy against deceptive advertising.”
Let’s deconstruct this. First, it’s not “some.” NARAL insists a whopping 79% of CPCs “that advertised on Google indicated that they provided medical services such as abortions, when, in fact, they are focused on counseling services and on providing information about alternatives to abortion.” Since I don’t have access to NARAL’s “analysis,” I can’t be specific.
What I can say is that over the years various analyses cranked out by NARAL are flagrantly political and egregiously misleading. They impute things to CPCs that the facts do not bear out. That’s where charges that CPCs are “misleading” comes in.
NARAL means many things by this but customarily (a) that CPCs distribute literature that explains that having an induced abortion increases the risk of breast cancer, and (b) that the CPCs won’t say that they don’t provide abortions.
The courts, by and large, have been unsympathetic to the last attack on CPCs because they see it for what it is: an obvious, politically-motivated assault on First Amendment free speech rights. (The right to free speech, the courts have pointed out, includes the right not to be compelled to say things you would not otherwise say.)
Again, without seeing NARAL’s analysis, my strong suspicion is they are trying to muscle Google into helping accomplish what NARAL’s is having loads of trouble accomplishing in the courts: strangling CPCs.
So for NARAL President to tell the Post that “We have no problem with crisis pregnancy centers advertising online; we have no problem with their existing” is so dishonest, it almost takes your breath away.
To double back to the abortion/breast cancer link. A friend forwarded me one of those customarily stupid “Fact Check” item in this case where a Nevada newspaper’s fact checking operation addressed what it described as the claim that “Abortion is linked with a raised risk of breast cancer.” (“Raised”?)
On a scale of 1-10, this clam, we’re told dismissively, rated a “1” on the “Truthmeter.”
Let’s talk about this analysis of the abortion/breast cancer link from the Reno Gazette Journal. On a 1-10 scale on the Blarneymeter–with 10 being totally smoke and mirrors–this is a twelve.
For example, they swallow hook, line, and sinker the nonsense that healthy women are more likely to deny prior abortions in their medical history study questionnaire than are women who’ve developed breast cancer. Hence (the argument goes), it would erroneously appear that abortion is more frequent among women who’ve had an abortion.
Prof. Joel Brind had dismantled this “recall bias” at least a half dozen time for NRL News and NRL News Today, most recently at nrlc.cc/1fKxHvf.
It is a sad day indeed if Google were coerced by NARAL into rejecting CPC ads. It would be worse if it happily went along without bothering to talk to experts like Dr. Brind or reading the trenchant court decisions that shot down NARAL’s attempts to ruin CPCs.
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