Is Your Bias Showing?

On June 30, 2015, an article titled You’ve been warned, America, gay marriage is just the beginning  by Fox News is written by Cal Thomas and the article has a title that could be taken either way, on one hand, it grabs attention and clearly shows the topic of the article; on the other hand, it seems like a real warning, like gay marriage, is something to be feared. once you click on the article you see this photo, a rather stunning photo of a pride flag with the supreme court in the background being waved by John Becker.John Becker, 30, of Silver Spring, Md., waves a rainbow flag in support of gay marriage outside of the Supreme Court in Washington, Thursday June 25, 2015. The same-sex marriage ruling is among the remaining to be released before the term ends at the end of June. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

This photo is the very first thing you see, this placement allows readers to be very sure that the article is in fact about gay marriage. Seeing this can go one of two ways, (a) it can entice the reader either because they are excited about the changes being made or it can

(a) it can entice the reader either because they are excited about the changes being made or because they oppose same-sex marriage or

(b) it can anger the reader because of the confirmation of the topic of the article.

so which ever way it has been interpreted by the reader this photo helps readers immediately develop their own bias. The photo also shows the subject of the flag and Becker being held higher than the supreme court, this can show us that the photographer sees the changes as positive and a is welcoming to the idea in question.  In the article you see facts about the ruling, the facts include:

  • it was a close call (5-4)
  • it allowed churches and religious institutions to still preach and teach that Same-sex marriage is wrong

These are included so those against or those on the fence of the topic can feel like their side was heard and their beliefs are being validated, this means Fox News doesn’t have to commit to anything except publishing the article. With no commitment to either side, Fox News doesn’t risk losing any readers. This part of the article you lose a bit of the bias, the pictures indicate PRO gay marriage but these facts seem to show a how maybe not all people are PRO gay marriage.

Further on in the article, it seems there is a shift in the topic of the article. The topic goes from gay marriage to better supreme court judge selection. Yes, that’s right a great change occurred and all people seem to care about is how the supreme court didn’t follow the constitution and why better judge selections need to be made.

The article says:

“This is diversity? No, this is enforced orthodoxy of a different kind and thus in violation of the Constitution and the special protection the Founders gave to people of faith”

This quote, however, is not even where the bias against gay rights are shown it is in the very last sentence Cal Thomas wrote

“If the zeitgeist and politics are more persuasive to some justices than the Constitution and the intent of the Founders, then justices should be held accountable by the political system and their terms limited.”

Both of the quotes seem to make equal rights seem like trends and irrelevant parts of society that are should not be recognized.  The article omits information like once interracial marriage was illegal and deemed wrong; in fact, this was only legalized in 1967 and the article blatantly overlooks the fact that all forms of marriage are legitimate and deserve the same kind of respect.

The article also included a video further discussing the topic which is worth the watch: master.m3u8

when reading the article there were no statistics or crowd counts, a few were revealed in the video, however, that definitely were impactful. The article did have an overtone of disapproval for the decision of the supreme court and it is not something those not looking could see, the media has a way of making you feel like you are on their side even if their side is narrow-minded.