The Providence Journal and Advocate
The Providence Journal news departments have clearly been populated by advocates for same-sex marriage for quite some time. Staff Writer Maria Armental takes it to another level with this:
Politically liberal, Rhode Island is split when it comes to gay issues: it remains the only New England state that hasn’t recognized gay marriage.
(Maine voters overturned that state’s same-sex law in November).
If you didn’t already know the whole backstory — the imposition of marriage redefinition through the judiciary and the targeted big-money advocacy through state legislatures, combined with a populist push to maintain the traditional understanding of the institution — you’d likely miss the fact that Rhode Island is not the “only New England state” that doesn’t “recognize gay marriage.” I don’t see any explanation for Armental’s subtle language except an intention to mislead readers of her newspaper. Most people won’t read “that hasn’t recognized” as “that hasn’t, at some point in its history, recognized”; they’ll think Maine voters overturned the traditional definition.
Objective reportage, one supposes, would have come too close to conveying the impression that the same-sex marriage “split” across New England is between the politically powerful and the people for the Providence Journal.