John Gibson's and Fox News' description of Schiavo case: "Terri's Fight"

››› ››› SIMON MALOY

On the March 28 edition of Fox News' The Big Story, host John Gibson again injected his opinion into news coverage of the Terri Schiavo case by characterizing Schiavo's ordeal as her "fight for life." For most of Gibson's segment on Schiavo, the on-screen text read: "Terri's Fight." Gibson has already suggested that Democrats "sided for [a] questionable husband and dying" in the Schiavo case.

Media Matters for America documented a number of "hard news" reporters and anchors from Fox News and other cable news outlets making statements in support of those who want Schiavo's feeding tube reinserted, referring to them as "Terri's advocates" and "Terri's supporters." As with the other phrases, Gibson's use of the phrase "Terri's Fight" amounts to taking sides in the dispute, since the court case centers precisely on whether Terri Schiavo would want to continue living in a persistent vegetative state and, by extension, who her true "advocates" are.

Gibson opened his March 28 show this way:

Hi, everybody, this is The Big Story. I'm John Gibson. Terri Schiavo is not giving up the fight for life, and neither are her parents.

The on-screen text during Gibson's segment -- "Terri's Fight" -- is an echo of www.terrisfight.org, the website of the Terri Schindler-Schiavo Foundation, an organization that works to "aid Terri and her immediate family by providing the resources they need to protect Terri from a court-ordered dehydration and starvation death."

Gibson made his personal views on the Schiavo case clear in a March 25 "My Word" commentary: "Just to burnish my reputation as a bomb thrower, I think [Florida Gov.] Jeb Bush should give serious thought to storming the Bastille. By that I mean he should think about telling his cops to go over to Terri Schiavo's hospice, go inside, put her on a gurney and load her into an ambulance. They could take her to a hospital, revive her, and reattach her feeding tube."

Posted In
Health Care, End of Life Issues
Stories/Interests
Terri Schiavo
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