By Dave Andrusko
Editor’s note. My family will be on vacation through the end of this week. I will be posting an occasional new story, but for the most part we will be re-posting columns that ran over the last year. Many will be strictly educational while some will about remind us of notable victories this legislative cycle.
There is no way of telling, of course, if there is any connection but it makes for interesting speculation. As NRL News Today has reported, Dynel Lane is accused of savagely attacking Michelle Wilkins and cutting out her seven-month-old unborn child.
The child died, but Lane cannot be charged with murder, the Boulder Colorado County District Attorney said, because the autopsy did not provide “any evidence that the baby exhibited any signs of life outside of the womb, therefore the circumstance is not being considered a live birth.”
Well a poll published by YouGov offers some fascinating insights into what 1,000 Americans said about abortion, fetal homicide, and the beginning of life.
For starters, 76% said prosecutors should be able to charge someone who attacks a pregnant woman if it leads to the “death of her unborn child.” There was a widespread consensus across all demographics.
Another interesting question: “Do you believe fetuses in the womb are people?” which avoids all the distractions about legal “personhood.” Exactly 2/3rds said yes, include 56% of Democrats.
Then there was “When do you believe life begins?” Fifty-two percent said at conception, a figure which ought to be higher. The biggest negative in this survey is that the younger the demographic, the lower the percentage who believe life begins at conception.
Then there is the question of “When do you believe abortion should be legal?” YouGov summarized the results this way:
56% of Americans think that abortion should not be legal on request, with 17% saying that it should never be allowed and 39% saying that it should only be allowed in certain special cases. 16% support abortion until the first trimester, while 9% support it until the point of survivability. 20% believe that abortion should always be legal.
Again showing how the public compartmentalizes its responses, if you were to add the 17% who say abortion should never be legal; with the 39% who say legal in special cases only (rape, incest, or health of the mother); with the 16% who say abortion should be legal only in the first trimester, you have 72%.
By the way, 25% of Black Americans and 21% of Hispanic Americans say abortion should never be legal.
As always, we must remember the bottom line. Abortion is essentially legal throughout pregnancy for any reason or no reason.
Whether it is 1973 or 2015, the American public steadfastly rejects that extremist position.
And just for extra nuance we are reprinting an article from January in which we analyzed the results of a poll conducted for the Knights of Columbus. The results were even more encouraging than the YouGov survey.