A while ago, the Kansas City Star published an article about a higher percentage of Catholic priests dying of AIDS than in the general population. The 'news' quickly spread to the nationwide news services.
Worst yet, Catholics (of all people) happily believed it. At the time, I refuted the article saying it didn't make logical sense and besides, didn't the press lie a lot? Few believed me, as evidenced by a long heated discussion in a Catholic Information Net message area, most taking the opportunity to launch a general bashing of Catholic priests.
But the truth has, at last, leaked out. In an article by Brent Bozell in which he says the Catholic church took a beating with a sledgehammer on this one, he pointed out that in an investigation, he found that in the Star's survey on which they based this conclusion, they had only contacted 3000 of the 46,000 Catholic priests in the U.S.
Only 800 priests responded to their survey and of these respondents, the Star guessed that about 400 had AIDS or might have AIDS but haven't been tested. But, survey results only showed .05 percent of these as ACTUALLY having AIDS and .04 percent as suspected of having AIDS.
In real numbers this means, only SEVEN priests either had AIDS or might have AIDS and haven't been tested yet.
As pointed out by statistical analysts, David Murray and Robert Lichter (whose debunking of these 'facts' did NOT make the national news and TV media), by the results of their OWN survey, the Kansas City Star found less than 1 percent of Catholic priests had AIDS or were suspected of having AIDS!
Bozell finally remarks that the official debunking of the phony stats received very little news coverage and that except for a mention in the Chicago Tribune and US News and World Report, the Kansas City Star has gotten away with its "journalistic malpractice".
What concerns me is the affinity of Catholics to want to believe such falsities issuing forth from the press. Despite the fact that they have observed again and again, how the press no longer has qualms with a lie or skewed statistics when it comes to Catholicism, priests or the pro life movement, so many Catholics cling tenaciously to the 'truth' in the press and lend more credence to the press and TV news than they do to their own church.
Source:Brent Bozell http://www.creators.com
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