February 3, 2011

AP’s Crary Does All He Can to Instill Doubt About LiveAction.org’s Planned Parenthood Sting Video

Poor Associated Press National Writer David Crary. He doesn’t seem to like what LiveAction.org did at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Perth Amboy, New Jersey in mid-January, and wants to make sure his readers leave his writeup with some level of doubt about the legitimacy of the group’s undercover video showing a clinic manager willing to provide assistance to a pimp for his underage hookers.

His report yesterday, with an accompanying headline seemingly designed to avoid identifying the video’s content opened thusly (bold is mine):

New video seeks to discredit Planned Parenthood

An anti-abortion group Tuesday released undercover video taken in its latest attempt to discredit Planned Parenthood – footage of operatives posing as a pimp and a prostitute seeking health services at a New Jersey clinic.

The group releasing the video, Live Action, said it depicted a clinic employee offering to help cover up a sex ring so that its prostitutes could receive health services. Planned Parenthood said it had promptly notified law enforcement authorities after the visit, but it also said it was investigating whether the clinic employee in the video may have violated some of the organization’s policies.

Just in case readers didn’t get the point of “said it depicted” the first time, Crary tries to insert doubt elsewhere in his report as follows:

On Tuesday, Live Action released a video that it said was taken Jan. 13 at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Perth Amboy, N.J.

In the video, a woman identified as the clinic manager converses with a man and a woman posing as sex traffickers regarding their interest in accessing contraception, abortions and sexually transmitted-disease testing for underage prostitutes.

As depicted in the video, the clinic manager advises that the underage girls could lie about their age to lessen the chance of triggering an investigation once they sought health services.

“For the most part, we want as little information as possible,” the employee says, according to the video.

The video also depicts the employee suggesting that prostitutes could get cheaper contraception by claiming they were students.

Yeah, just kind of play along that they’re students – we want to make it look as legit as possible,” the woman identified as the clinic manager says.

Live Action said it was making available both edited and unedited versions of the video.

We wouldn’t want anybody thinking that this video is 100% real — even though Planned Parenthood has made no attempt to deny that the incident took place — now do we?

The video’s location and the identity of the clinic’s manager should been easily verifiable. There seems to be a pretty good chance that the name of the manager was known by the time Crary wrote his report.

Crary & Co. at the AP are going to have to work up another “please don’t read this, and if you do, please don’t believe it” writeup, as LiveAction released a second video “it says” is from a Richmond, Virginia Planned Parenthood clinic.

The AP headline for what is for the moment a brief story relating to the Richmond video is: “Anti-abortion group video targets Virginia clinic.” Gosh, I thought “targeting” people or organizations was supposed to be a bad thing.

Like it or not, it seems that David Crary & Co. might be on this story for a while. LiveAction.org’s second video, like the first, ends with “To Be Continued.”

Cross-posted at NewsBusters.org.

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