Antiabortion Blogger Mistakes Onion Column for Real Deal
The proprietor of a pro-life blog railed with righteous indignation against a column from The Onion titled “I’m Totally Psyched About This Abortion!” Apparently lines from the column like “I seriously cannot wait for all the hemorrhaging and the uterine contractions” didn’t tip the blogger off to the column’s satirical intent–and he has since become the laughingstock of the blogosphere.
It’s the stuff of webby fantasy and urban legend: a reader who takes an Onion story seriously. Last week, a speedy and vicious blogosphere watched its collective wet dream made real when “Pete,” proprietor of antiabortion blog March Together for Life, posted “Murder Without Conscience,” a furious excoriation of a 7-year-old fake column in the Onion titled “I’m Totally Psyched About This Abortion!” [Ed. Note: The original “Murder Without Conscience” entry has been altered since its publication and now includes some graphic images.]
The Onion is a satirical newspaper founded in 1988 by University of Wisconsin students and is these days published weekly from New York. The piece that inspired Pete’s July 6 extended smack-down was a 1999 Op-Ed by fictional columnist “Caroline Weber.” Pete did not realize that the Onion traffics in satire, and that the piece was a send-up of the notion that pro-choice activists are actually “pro-abortion.” Weber’s outrageous claims that she “seriously cannot wait for all the hemorrhaging and the uterine contractions” and that “this abortion is going to be so amazing” did not tip off Pete. In an utterly unironic retort, he cited lines like, “It wasn’t until now that I was lucky enough to be pregnant with a child I had no means to support,” and “I just know it’s going to be the best non-anesthetized invasive uterine surgery ever!” to illustrate his disgust with the author.