June 8, 2007
Marching for ... Who?
Reporters seem confused about why Brazil's Christians are in the streets.
The streets of Sao Paulo are packed with demonstrators. Why are they there?
The Associated Press headlines its coverage of Brazil's March for Jesus with "Evangelicals pack Sao Paulo despite arrest of church founders."
AFP doesn't mention those church founders, Estevam Hernandes Filho and Sonia Haddad Moraes Hernandes (who, by the way, pleaded guilty today to charges of money smuggling) in its coverage of the March for Jesus. It's headline: "One million anti-gay evangelicals march in Brazil. The Associated Press coverage didn't mention anything about homosexuality.
The Christian Post suggests that the march is largely aimed not at homosexuality but at Catholicism -- or that it is at least an indication of a "flood of [Catholic] believers in Latin America turning to evangelical churches."
So are these three news services seeing different rallies, or are they casting about for what "the real story" is behind the March for Jesus? Here's a tip for next year's coverage: Not every story needs a conflict angle. Sometimes rallies aren't negative. Want to know what the March for Jesus is about? There's a clue in the last two words of its title.
Addendum: The aimless news coverage of March for Jesus reminds me of this wonderful Onion video satire: