Newsweek published an article last week with astounding factual inaccuracies. The article was titled, “How Charismatic Catholic Groups Like Amy Coney Barrett’s People of Praise Inspired ‘The Handmaid’s Tale.’” It was a shameless hit piece, accusing Trump’s SCOTUS nominee of belonging to a religious group which inspired the novel where women’s bodies are owned by an oppressive theocracy.   

But as we know, and the people at Newsweek know, it’s simply not true. 

Read the first sentence, which includes a bombshell accusation:

Amy Coney Barrett, a favorite to be President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee to replace Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, is affiliated with a type of Christian religious group that served as inspiration for Margaret Atwood’s dystopian novel, The Handmaid’s Tale.

Wow.  That’s dramatic.  “Concerns have been raised that Barrett’s ties to the group as would influence her decisions on the Supreme Court,” the article shamelessly concluded. 

However, these accusations are not true.  After the slightest bit of scrutiny, the story collapsed.  However, the way the news magazine handled the so-called correction is actually quite ridiculous.  The headline is the same, the article is the same.  At the very end of the long article is one, lonely paragraph, which basically says what you just read is factually incorrect:

Correction: This article’s headline originally stated that People of Praise inspired ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’. The book’s author, Margaret Atwood, has never specifically mentioned the group as being the inspiration for her work. A New Yorker profile of the author from 2017 mentions a newspaper clipping as part of her research for the book of a different charismatic Catholic group, People of Hope. Newsweek regrets the error.

You may think after an error so ‘regrettable,’ Newsweek would alter the article to be somewhat honest. You’d be disappointed. They don’t care about the error, it simply is a smear tactic to attack a conservative they don’t like. 

The correction specifies the religious organization supposedly responsible for the inspiration of the novel was entirely different from Barrett’s. However, they still dedicate an entire portion of the article to explain the “People of Praise” to which Barrett belongs. They only dedicate a couple of sentences to the “People of Hope.”

This is like writing an article on how Joe Biden’s church inspired Orwell’s 1984, then in fine print at the end saying, “Actually the Soviet Union inspired the novel. Oops.”

People trust Newsweek, though they should not. This article is reaching far and wide and inspiring various other websites to report on the same thing. These false allegations are unacceptable and we need to hold journalists to a higher standard. This is more anti-religious bigotry, one of the only remaining acceptable prejudices — almost always propagated by radical leftists trying to push faith out of the cultural conversation.

Do better.

Correction: Newsweek should not be considered a real news source and I regret referring to them as such.

Hat Tip: Newsweek

Image Credit: Wikimedia


About The Author

Mark was a co-founder of the Tea Party Patriots, and served as the national coordinator. He left the organization to work more broadly on expanding the self-governance movement beyond the partisan divide. Mark appears regularly on television in outlets as diverse as MSNBC, ABC, NBC, Fox News, CNN, Bloomberg, Fox Business and the BBC. He’s highly sought after for the tea party perspective from print and electronic media outlets, from the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, L.A. Times, Washington Examiner, Politico and the The Hill. Mark blogs at, and his opinion editorials regularly run in many of the leading political newspapers both on and offline. Mark has a BA in English from San Diego State University and graduated with honors from University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law in 1988. He practiced real estate and business law for almost a decade. For the last eleven years of his legal career he specialized in Internet advertising law. When not fighting for the future of our nation, Mark is an avid horseman, and lives in rural northern California with his wife Patty and two children.

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