On the PLoS Blog, “The Panic Network,” Seth Mnookin writes: “More media stupidity: Chicago Sun-Times runs propaganda piece for Jenny McCarthy’s anti-vaccine conference.” He begins:
On Sunday, in honor of Mother’s Day, the Chicago Sun-Times ran a puff piece on native daughter Jenny McCarthy. This is closer to a press release than it is to journalism:
On Memorial Day weekend, Jenny McCarthy will bring a little bit of L.A. glamor to her hometown, Chicago, for a cause that is close to her heart. The TV star’s philanthropic organization, Generation Rescue, and Autism One [sic] have paired up to offer a conference for parents to learn about new support and treatment methods for their children with autism. McCarthy will be a keynote speaker at the conference, which, for the second year in a row, is free for the entire weekend to ensure that families of all income levels can attend and learn more about treatment for their children with autism.
You can do a web search on Seth Mnookin and Jenny McCarthy to see the history of his writings about the former Playmate’s activities regarding vaccines and autism.
Renowned media blogger Jim Romenesko also blogged about the Sun-Times/McCarthy piece. Romenesko says he sent this email to Sun-Times Media editor-in-chief Jim Kirk:
Not one of the top three editors at the Sun-Times want to respond to my email about your odd Jenny McCarthy piece — written by your public relations vice president?
Back when you were the Chicago Tribune media columnist, you would have needled the Sun-Times for doing this; now you’re the guy who’s ultimately responsible for it.
Come on, Jim, you can do better than this.