WRL media coursework, Amnesty
In June 2007 amnesty international, an organisation who have traditionally partnered the Catholic Church, changed there policy on abortion after there research in Dafur. They looked into rape and how in many countries it is being used as a weapon of war and once a tribe has defeated another tribe the women of the area would be raped as a signal of victory. After these findings amnesty who previously neutral on abortion has stated that it supports abortion in certain circumstances such as rape, incest and as a weapon of war.
Over the years both the Catholic Church and amnesty have worked together on freeing political prisoners and highlighting human rights. However since amnesty changed its policy on abortion against there’s they have advised all Catholics to quit there membership to amnesty. In my coursework I’ll be looking at two articles on there views on the preceding and be comparing and contrasting between them. The first article is from the guardian, a paper which is well known for its liberal thinking and belief of free will.
It believes the Catholic Church is wrong for banning amnesty and both starts and finishes ridiculing the Catholic’s view as “nonsensical. ” They also mention how out of the 1/4 million catholic members of amnesty only 222 quit and how most of these where from the clergy who may of lost there jobs if they had refused. It also mocks the catholic mentioning how “105 Catholics have even increased there donations”. To show what side the guardian is really on it talks about how 2000 Catholic schools will suffer from not being able to use amnesty’s teachings.
The final part of the article talks about amnesties policies and talks about there research in Darfur and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, overall the guardian makes a very convincing argument which undermines the Catholic’s view. Meanwhile the Telegraph is a much more traditional paper and believes in the Catholic Church, however does not rebuff amnesty too much. The telegraph relies on statistics to present a case and uses numbers such as “2000 secondary schools” and “5000 Catholic parishes” and if the telegraph were to present a case where the numbers aren’t available they would probably struggle.
The article contradicts the guardian by claiming the number of Catholic’s leaving Amnesty as “exodus”. However unlike the guardian admits how the splitting has made a lot of Catholic’s look at there faith. The article also does not insult the Catholic’s decision as the telegraph has a large catholic following which it would not want to upset. I believe each of the articles support one side, the guardian supports amnesty and the telegraph supports the Catholic Church’s view.
After reading both articles I believe the guardian puts up a much more convincing and uses the information carefully to make me believe it is a pointless decision for the Catholics to turn there back’s on amnesty and will do them no good. I personally feel neutral about abortion, I believe that abortion is a serious decision and unnecessary abortion is wrong. However just like amnesty I believe abortion is ok if caused by rape or it may affect the women’s life.
This just goes to show maybe the Catholic’s attack is unfounded and that there is no point in splitting of amnesty and the Catholics, as I am a catholic and like many share these views. What I have learnt from this coursework is how influential the media can be and how they can pick up a topic, twist it, put people against each other and make a profit from it. Newspapers can create evil figures and change the public’s view of a character for example the way the tabloids have changed the way people think of Heather McCartney during her divorce.
However everybody has there own opinions on what the Catholic Church has done and all have these opinions for different reasons. Some peoples religions change there view many Catholics will back there Church and fully support there church. Others will be altered by there upbringing and many will follow what they were brought up to believe so if they were brought up to follow amnesty they are more than likely to stick with them. Newspaper’s change people’s views and can create a bias between sides and if the public are constantly battered with the information it is only a matter of time before the minds change.
A final factor that can change peoples view is there own good and bad experiences and if someone has a bad experience with a person, group or organisation there view of them will be altered. This may not be an issue that effects everyone, however it is a very important event for Catholic’s or anyone associated with the Catholic Church, especially those who are members of Amnesty as it put there religion and personal beliefs in conflict and can cause some important personal decision to be made on there religious future.
So it goes to show moral views and religious views for Catholics are not identical and issues such as this just highlight this. Finally we come to what may happen from now on and what the future paths are for the Catholic Church and amnesty. Firstly the Catholics may ignore what the church has to say on amnesty and carry on supporting both amnesty and being a catholic and in the end ant feud will be dropped.
Secondly the media may carry on picking up on the story and use it as a daily article, this may result in publicity neither side wants and the whole topic becoming out of hand and both sides being made a mock of. The final option is for both amnesty and the Catholic Church to come to a compromise and to forget there one minor difference and focus on there many similarities and soon the media will get bored of the whole topic and move onto a more interesting news. As for both amnesty and the catholic church this is the result which suits them both but what happens from here is down to them and the media.