CNN Rebuked for Biased Christian 'Warriors' Program

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By Ethan Cole, Christian Post Reporter
August 28, 2007|5:16 pm

Criticisms are mounting against what some call bias reporting for the Christian segment of last week’s three-part CNN special “God’s Warriors.”

Viewers of the Aug. 21-23 mini-series, which re-aired Aug. 24-26, were allegedly pounded by the special’s producer and anchor Christiane Amanpour with slanted messages of Christian extremism.

“By lumping Christian religious conservatives into a series that began with a focus on terrorism, it creates an impression of guilt by associations,” said Dr. Gary Cass, chairman and CEO of the Christian Anti-Defamation Commission and former head of the Center for Reclaiming America for Christ, according to OneNewsNow.

The segment shown prior to the Christian installment reported on Islamic terrorists like the Taliban and suicide bombers.

“It seems as if there may be a problem of moral equivalency stating that what we do peacefully and lawfully, in trying to bring change to the culture, is in any way related to what violent fundamentalists and other religions do in the name of their religion,” Cass said.

Liberty University, for example, was said to be raising a generation of “pit bulls” to attack secular culture. Though Amanpour was citing a past quote from the late Rev. Jerry Falwell, Liberty University’s founder, it was said in a way that cast Falwell as a radical leader building an army of young Christian warriors.

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Viewers were introduced to Liberty University’s new law school which has a replica of the U.S. Supreme Court room. The special portrayed the school as plotting to raise conservative Christian lawyers who would take over the nation’s highest court of law in the future. It also zoomed in on the ten commandment carved outside of a classroom at the Christian law school.

“Really, what our vision is is to raise a new generation of people that understands the rule of law that are taught that in our Christian tradition and worldview,” clarified Mathew Staver, dean of Liberty University’s law school, when Amanpour questioned him on raising a new generation of “pit bull” lawyers.

Also included in the special were clips of fatal bombings of abortion clinics by Christian fanatics and a Christian Zionist pastor who believes in protecting Israel at all costs, including a military attack on Iran.

“[The CNN series] is false in its basic premise, established in the opening scene in which Jewish (and Christian) religious fervency is equated with that of Muslims heard endorsing ‘martyrdom,’ or suicide murder,” stated the report by the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America.

“There is, of course, no counterpart among Jews and Christians to the violent jihadist Muslim campaigns under way across the globe,” it added.

Not all the reporting for the Christian installment was criticized, however. Christian figures and ministries more accurately portrayed on the episode included the Rev. Rich Cizik of the National Association of Evangelicals and Ron Luce of Teen Mania ministry and Battle Cry.

Part 3 of the series also included a May 8 interview with the Rev. Jerry Falwell, which turned out to be his last interview with a television journalist before he died on May 15, 2007.

 

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