By Dave Andrusko
Yesterday Randall K. O’Bannon, Ph.D., NRL Director of Education and Research, offered an in-depth overview of the abortion numbers provided by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). If you missed it, take time to read his analysis carefully and then share it with pro-life friends and family.
While there are at least seven-to-ten takeaways, here are five.
#1. First and foremost, the steady drop continues in the annual number of abortions in the United States. This has taken place for so long, we might easily miss that the 4.2% decline from 2011 to 2012 is not some dry statistic but represents the survival of real, live, flesh-and-blood babies.
#2. Let me quote these two paragraphs from Dr. O’Bannon, they are that important. In the states surveyed by the CDC
it found an abortion rate of 13.2 abortions for every 1,000 women aged 15-44 years. As for the abortion ratio, the CDC found that there were 210 abortions for every thousand live births.
To illustrate how large the drops are consider this. The CDC’s abortion rate was 25 per thousand women in 1980 (almost twice as high as 2012) and the abortion ratio it reported was 364 abortions per thousand live births in 1984.
That truly is an astounded pair of numbers. Imagine where we would be if the likes of PPFA weren’t the recipient of billions of federal and state monies.
#3. The abortion ratio is a very significant figure. CDC’s abortion ratio–the number of abortions per 1,000 live births–was its highest, 364, in 1984. In 2012 it was 210 for every 1,000 live births. But what does that mean?
Taken together the lower abortion rates and ratios show that the lower numbers reflect not merely, say, population shifts but actual changes in attitudes and actions towards abortion in the wider culture. Abortion is becoming a less common occurrence in our society and a less common choice among pregnant women.
Why? Largely because of your efforts. Laws have an impact, which is why the abortion industry is so desperate to stop parental involvement and waiting period and right to know laws. If they despise anything more than this, it would be a requirement that women have a chance to see an ultrasound of their unborn child before making a life-and-death decision.
In a similar fashion the same trade that tells us that abortion is practically safer than aspirin fights tooth and nail requiring that abortionists to have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital to follow up on the inevitable complications.
Surely part of the explanation for the decline lies in the cumulative impact of years of pro-life education highlighting the humanity of the unborn child and the viability of life-affirming alternatives to abortion. Which, parenthetically, is why PPFA and NARAL so loathe women-helping centers.
#4. Elsewhere today, we reposted a story from Texas Right to Life. Cynthia Meyer, the Press Secretary for Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, tweeted that more black babies are aborted than are born in New York City. PolitiFact verified the statement as “True,” the highest of six possible ratings which can be assigned by PolitiFact’s Truth-O-Meter.
You and I know this is true, but most people would be astonished. That is an extreme example, but the CDC surveillance report proves that women of color continue to have a disproportionate number of abortions.
The abortion rate (the number of abortions per 1,000 women of childbearing age) for blacks is 27.8–three and one-half times that of whites–7.7.
Also very noteworthy is that the abortion rate for Hispanics–15– is nearly double that of whites females. And…
#5. Alas, there are many bad conclusions in the report. You know from reading NRL News Today about the explosion in the number of chemical abortions; that most abortions are to unmarried women (83.5%, according to the CDC); and that 44.2% of women reported having had at least one previous abortion, 11% reported two previous abortions, and 8.6% reported having three abortions or more.
But what you may not realize is at the same time the abortion rate for teens 15-19 dropped 40.4% between 2003 and 2012, among all age groups, nearly six in ten women (59.8%) reported having already previously giving live birth to at least one child.
We didn’t need these figures to remain committed to the greatest movement for social justice of our time. But they do remind us that our battle is not over until every unborn baby’s life is saved.