PHILADELPHIA, April 12, 2013 ( – Amidst a pro-life Twitter campaign challenging the media blackout on the grisly trial of late-term abortionist Kermit Gosnell, a “pro-choice” reporter has offered a frank apology for neglecting what she’s now calling the “trial of the century.”

“The MSM [mainstream media] has barely covered a story that could plausibly be named ‘The Trial of the Century'.  And that demands explanation.  So I'll tell you why I haven't covered it,” writes Megan McArdle at the Daily Beast.

“To start, it makes me ill. I haven't been able to bring myself to read the grand jury inquiry. I am someone who cringes when I hear a description of a sprained ankle,” McArdle continues. “But I understand why my readers suspect me, and other pro-choice mainstream journalists, of being selective–of not wanting to cover the story because it showcased the ugliest possibilities of abortion rights. The truth is that most of us tend to be less interested in sick-making stories–if the sick-making was done by ‘our side.’ “


McArdle claims that Gosnell’s actions were not caused by legal abortion but admits that legal abortion created the condition for it to take place. “Gosnell was able to harm so many women and babies because he operated in the open,” she writes.

She also highlights the “disturbing implications” Gosnell’s case has for late-term abortions. “It suggests that sometimes, those fetuses are delivered alive,” she writes. “Worse, it hints at what we might be doing inside the womb to ensure that the other ones aren't.”

McArdle discusses a reply from Washington Post reporter Sarah Kliff when she was questioned for not covering the trial by Mollie Hemingway of the GetReligion blog. On Twitter, Kliff said: “I cover policy for the Washington Post, not local crime.”

“I could also offer Kliff's defense, that this is a local crime,” writes McArdle. “But George Tiller's murder was also a local crime.  There was no ‘national policy issue’ involved: murder is a matter for state law…Nonetheless, lots of national journalists — including Sarah Kliff, for Newsweek — covered the killing and discussed what it meant for abortion provision nationwide.”

She makes clear that she grapsed the implications of her argument, saying the Gosnell trial impacts abortion policy nationwide.

She asks if there are holes in the regulations governing abortion facilities. “More to the point, are those holes created, in part, by the pressure to go easy on abortion clinics, or more charitably, the fear of getting tangled in a hot-button political issue?” she asks.

“This story should have been covered much more than it was — covered as a national policy issue, not a ‘local crime story’. The press has literally been AWOL,” she writes. “What happened in Philadelphia should never happen again, and all of us — not just the Philadelphia police — should be asking how we make sure it doesn't.”