Thoughts and Faith to Share

The Impact of Headlines

A professional journalist knows that some people will only read the headline of a news article rather than delve into the details of a story. So it is important to craft a headline that hopefully would entice the reader to actually read the article and failing that, at least convey the conclusion to which the journalist would have liked the reader to come had he actually read the article.

Below are five headlines attributed to the same news item as reported by different sources:

“Survey Shows Most U.S. Adults Support Laws Limiting or Regulating Abortion”

“New Survey Finds Only 9% of Americans Support Unrestricted Abortion”

“Poll: Plurality of Americans Want All or Most Abortions Illegal, Want Pro-Life Laws”

Survey: Americans More Pro-Life Than Their Laws

Abortion restrictions enjoy significant support, survey finds

If an astute person were to actually read the article, he would find each of those particular headlines to be far from adequate for conveying the fullness of truth.

A more honest headline would be: “Although the Majority of U.S. Adults Support Legalized Abortion, they also Support Some Laws Regulating Abortion”.

Personally, I am tired of being manipulated.

I also know that the pro-life community cannot devise effective defensive and offensive strategies in our confrontations with the culture of death if we are blind to the truth. And if the survey reported on by the above sources is to be taken seriously, 89 percent of American adults support abortion under some circumstances (for one or more reasons at some points in time) during the nine months of pregnancy.

Related: America’s Shame