Writing at TheBlaze, Billy Hallowell raises questions about the ethics of the Religion News Service (RNS) after he describes their decision to accept funding from an activist atheist — without publicly acknowledging they had done so.
The Stiefel Freethought Foundation (SFF), a hub for the atheist movement, has given $65,000 [to the Religion News Service] over the past two years to help fund coverage of non-believers and the so-called “freethought” movement. The organization, run by atheist millionaire Todd Stiefel…, has a very clear goal of organizing atheists, while spreading and advancing non-belief.
Under a section entitled “Accomplishments in 2011,” the [SFF] site reads, “SFF donated $50,000 to Religion News Service to bolster its coverage of freethinkers with a series of news, investigations, feature stories and photos.”
Hallowell says “most” news organizations would find this relationships “suspect,” and questions if the donation might influence the tone of reporting:
Taking money from a special interest group in the faith sphere causes one to wonder how rigorously — or honestly — the subject of atheism was explored.
If this sounds familiar, it should. Hallowell is referring to the issue raised here regarding the RNS reporting of Kimberly Winston, who has written veritable “press releases” for atheists. These articles have included stories on the atheist counter-Christian “Rock Beyond Belief” organized by atheist Army SGT Justin Griffith, which was an event Read more