In another bizarre case of misplaced mainstream media priorities, U.S. television networks favored the death of a sea mammal over the fight to save a British baby.
During Tuesday morning’s news shows, the three broadcast networks devoted more time to covering the death of a three-month-old killer whale than to the heart-rending case of 11-month-old Charlie Gard and his battle to live.
As the Media Research Center (MRC) reported, ABC, CBS and NBC spent a combined total of three minutes and 17 seconds on the “last baby orca whale born into captivity,” compared to just two minutes and 14 seconds on the decision of Charlie Gard’s parents to drop their legal battle and “let our son go to be with the angels.”
The now celebrated saga of young Charlie Gard, which drew the attention of Pope Francis and President Donald Trump, has dominated social media in past weeks, stirring debate over the ethical issues surrounding the UK court’s decision to ban Charlie’s parents from pursuing experimental treatment in the United States.
On Monday, Charlie’s parents Chris Gard and Connie Yates ended their legal struggle to get Charlie the care he needed, because, as their lawyer put it, “time has run out.”
Many have accused the court of intentionally “running out the clock” on Charlie and his family, in what commentator Jonah Goldberg described as a sadly perfect example of the legal principle “justice delayed is justice denied.”
Sadly perfect example of Justice Delayed being Justice Denied. https://t.co/fUvYgLQTYA
— Jonah Goldberg (@JonahNRO) July 24, 2017
From the beginning, America’s major networks avoided Charlie’s story until President Trump tweeted his support, effectively pushing the story into a national spotlight. Even then, as MRC reported, when a judge revisited Charlie’s case, the networks spent more time on a picture of Beyoncé’s twins than on the British infant.
In its brief coverage of Charlie Gard Tuesday morning, ABC’s Good Morning America focused on the alleged “false hope” offered by American Doctor Michio Hirano who worked together with Charlie’s parents to look for a medical solution.
“When he says false hope, of course the parents are going to hold onto any kind of hope like that,” said ABC anchor Robin Roberts.
The fact is, the chance for any hope at all was quashed by the UK courts that barred Charlie’s parents from pursuing treatment for their son, something that seemed to elude ABC.