Palin daughter pregnancy was valid news
My friend and former colleague Don Wycliff makes the case for why the press should have respected the privacy of the 17-year-old girl and ignored the fact the unwed high school student is expecting a baby.
I agree the girl is not a public figure and the matter properly should have been off-limits to the media. But there was nothing proper about the way the case came to light. Once it did, the press had no choice but to pursue the story, especially after the McCain campaign made a public announcement about it.
This admittedly unsavory episode got started when bloggers last weekend began circulating the speculation that Gov. Palin’s new baby actually was born to her daughter, Bristol. The rumor suggested the governor was saying she was the mother to spare her daughter the embarrassment of being an unwed mother.
When the chatter became too loud to ignore, the McCain campaign knocked down the rumor on Monday by acknowledging that Bristol is pregnant and then naming the father of her child.
The press was right to investigate the original rumor, which would have been a legitimate story if it had it had been true. If the rumor proved to be unfounded, as it was, the press would have been right to remain silent.
Once the McCain campaign started talking about it, however, it was news and the media had no choice but to pursue it.