Letter to the Editor

BY DI READERS | MARCH 10, 2011 7:20 AM

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Anti-abortion insert troubling

The cover of a 12-page advertising supplement included in Tuesday’s edition of the Daily Iowan featured pictures of battered women and victims of rape, accompanied with the words “You can stop injustice.”

Contrary to what you’d expect, the contents of this packet were filled with extremist anti-abortion propaganda. This pamphlet, which was funded by the Human Life Alliance, made the absurd assertions, among others, that victims of rape and incest would be better off without the option of abortion and that Planned Parenthood is a eugenics organization.

There is a difference between a newspaper providing the space for an organization to logically express its point of view and a newspaper giving legitimacy to offensive and fanatical claims. The ad was blatantly trying to mislead readers. It took advantage of the faces and suffering of victims of rape, domestic violence, and racism, and used them for its own benefit. The DI is failing students by allowing itself to be paid by an organization that stoops to such tactics.

This isn’t a question of the accuracy of exaggerated language used by a shoe store to advertise a sale; this is extremely deceiving information about an issue as serious as a woman’s life and body. Rather than being the means for this organization to circulate its offensive and deceptive information, the DI should be critically reporting on Iowa City’s sexual-health options.

Whether pro-life or pro-choice, I know students at Iowa are intelligent enough to see through the misinformation of this fanatical organization. The DI’s decision to run the ad says more about the state of journalism. If an independent newspaper affiliated with a public university — one of our society’s most liberal institutions — cannot resist the monetary lure of harmful and deceptive advertising, I have no hope for the rest of journalism.

Justine Scattarelli
UI junior

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