An Australian television reporter who covered protests over the Supreme Court’s reversal of Roe v. Wade apologized after posing with a vile, anti-Christian sign, then posting the image on her Instagram.
Lana Murphy, who works for Channel 9 and was in Melbourne to cover protests, was pictured Saturday holding up the sign and smiling. The horrific message on the sign sparked a huge online backlash against Murphy and the station, the Daily Mail reported.
“Mary (the virgin) should’ve had an abortion,” read the sign.
— Joel Agius (@Joel_Agius1) July 5, 2022
Catholic writer Joel Agius tweeted that the sign was bad enough, but the fact that Murphy was proud enough of the photo to post it on her social media account compounded the transgression.
“What she did was extremely disgusting,” Agius tweeted. “She chose to post this Christian hate on her own Instagram account. She made the conscious decision to do it. We’re just calling her out on it.”
The network apologized Tuesday, saying it sent Murphy for counseling as to why the message on the sign was inappropriate
“The journalist did not mean to cause any offense, but has been counselled on why the post was not appropriate,” the network said. “9News apologizes to anyone offended by the post.
“We respect all sides of this sensitive issue and pride ourselves on reporting with impartiality,” the statement concluded.
Murphy said in a statement that she was sorry and recognized how the message on the sign might be considered offensive.
“The words on the sign and my subsequent posting of that image on my personal social media account has caused offense to some in the religious community,” she said. “This was not my intention, and I wholeheartedly apologize to those that were hurt.”
But she seemed more concerned with having betrayed her objectivity as a reporter than amplifying a message of anti-Christian bigotry.
“I acknowledge that in my professional role, it was not the appropriate time to appear to have chosen any side,” she wrote.
The Supreme Court’s decision ended the federal right to abortion established in the landmark 1973 case, and restored to states the right to restrict or even ban abortion. In Australia, states and territories make laws regarding restrictions on abortion, though in most of the country, it is legal up until birth, with two doctors required for approval after 22 weeks.