Interesting Take from an Anti-Choice Writer

Voting Our Con­science, Not Our Religion

Sec­ond, pol­i­tics is the art of the pos­si­ble. Dur­ing the eight years of the Rea­gan pres­i­den­cy, the num­ber of legal abor­tions increased by more than 5 per­cent; dur­ing the eight years of the Clin­ton pres­i­den­cy, the num­ber dropped by 36 per­cent. The over­all abor­tion rate (cal­cu­lat­ed as the num­ber of abor­tions per 1,000 women between the ages of 15 and 44) was more or less sta­ble dur­ing the Rea­gan years, but dur­ing the Clin­ton pres­i­den­cy, it dropped by 11 percent.

There are many rea­sons for this shift. Yet sure­ly the tra­di­tion­al Demo­c­ra­t­ic con­cern with the social safe­ty net makes it eas­i­er for preg­nant women to make respon­si­ble deci­sions and for young life to flour­ish; among the most eco­nom­i­cal­ly dis­ad­van­taged, abor­tion rates have always been and remain the high­est. The world’s low­est abor­tion rates are in Bel­gium and the Nether­lands, where abor­tion is legal but where the wel­fare state is strong. Latin Amer­i­ca, where almost all abor­tions are ille­gal, has one of the high­est rates in the world.

None of this is to argue that abor­tion should be accept­able. His­to­ry will judge our soci­ety’s sup­port of abor­tion in much the same way we view ear­li­er gen­er­a­tions’ sup­port of tor­ture and slavery—it will be uni­ver­sal­ly con­demned. The moral con­dem­na­tion of abor­tion, how­ev­er, need not lead to the con­clu­sion that crim­i­nal pros­e­cu­tion is the best way to lim­it the num­ber of abor­tions. Those who view abor­tion as the most sig­nif­i­cant issue in this cam­paign may well want to sup­ple­ment their abstract desire for moral rec­ti­tude with a more real­is­tic focus on how best to ensure that few­er abor­tions take place.

Cyn is Rick's wife, Katie's Mom, and Esther & Oliver's Mémé. She's also a professional geek, avid reader, fledgling coder, enthusiastic gamer (TTRPGs), occasional singer, and devoted stitcher.
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