Abortion rate down again

Conservatives may despair at losing the culture wars, but there are bright spots where persuasion is working. No doubt aided by the improvements in fetal imaging as well as studies revealing the ability to feel pain and respond in utero, Americans are turning away from abortion, in an unmistakable long term trend. Michael J. New writes in NRO:

Last month, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) released abortion figures for the year 2010. The data indicates that the national abortion rate continues its 20 year decline. The number of abortions performed declined by 3 percent between 2009 and 2010. This decline is fairly consistent across the country. The number of abortions went down in 36 of the 44 states that reported data to the CDC. Furthermore, there was no strong regional variation in the decline. The decline in southern states was actually slightly less than the national average. The abortion decline was nearly equal in red states and blue states.

For ideological reasons, the media barely covers this transformation in attitudes and behavior, for it represents a repudiation of one of the central goals of feminism, itself a key bloc of the progressive movement. New demonstrates how they attempt to rationalize away this repudiation:

Whenever the media covers abortion trends, they often cite increased contraception use as the reason for the abortion drop. The Associated Press mentioned this in their coverage of the 2010 abortion figures. However, this assertion is not supported by the data. Contraception use began to increase well before abortions started to decline. And the unintended pregnancy rate has actually increased since the mid-1990s. Interestingly, since 1990 there has been a substantial increase in both pro-life public sentiment and state level pro-life laws. However, the mainstream media has scant interest in giving the pro-life movement any credit for declining abortion rates.

The continuing victory in the war of ideas over abortion ought to be not just celebrated but emulated by conservatives in other ideological realms. Persuasion based on science is one key lesson. Visual images are another weapon inadequately exploited by conservatives. Photographs of undeniably human fetuses count for more than arguments on theory. The value of persistence is a great lesson the pro-life movement has us as well.

Hat tip: Cliff Thier                      

 

Conservatives may despair at losing the culture wars, but there are bright spots where persuasion is working. No doubt aided by the improvements in fetal imaging as well as studies revealing the ability to feel pain and respond in utero, Americans are turning away from abortion, in an unmistakable long term trend. Michael J. New writes in NRO:

Last month, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) released abortion figures for the year 2010. The data indicates that the national abortion rate continues its 20 year decline. The number of abortions performed declined by 3 percent between 2009 and 2010. This decline is fairly consistent across the country. The number of abortions went down in 36 of the 44 states that reported data to the CDC. Furthermore, there was no strong regional variation in the decline. The decline in southern states was actually slightly less than the national average. The abortion decline was nearly equal in red states and blue states.

For ideological reasons, the media barely covers this transformation in attitudes and behavior, for it represents a repudiation of one of the central goals of feminism, itself a key bloc of the progressive movement. New demonstrates how they attempt to rationalize away this repudiation:

Whenever the media covers abortion trends, they often cite increased contraception use as the reason for the abortion drop. The Associated Press mentioned this in their coverage of the 2010 abortion figures. However, this assertion is not supported by the data. Contraception use began to increase well before abortions started to decline. And the unintended pregnancy rate has actually increased since the mid-1990s. Interestingly, since 1990 there has been a substantial increase in both pro-life public sentiment and state level pro-life laws. However, the mainstream media has scant interest in giving the pro-life movement any credit for declining abortion rates.

The continuing victory in the war of ideas over abortion ought to be not just celebrated but emulated by conservatives in other ideological realms. Persuasion based on science is one key lesson. Visual images are another weapon inadequately exploited by conservatives. Photographs of undeniably human fetuses count for more than arguments on theory. The value of persistence is a great lesson the pro-life movement has us as well.

Hat tip: Cliff Thier                      

 

RECENT VIDEOS