By Dave Andrusko
(This ran a while back but it’s one of my favorites. )
Toward the end of the day I try to make posts both shorter and which come to the point quicker. This discussion is taken from “Big pro-life families are shifting the abortion debate,” written by the Boston Globe’s Kevin White.
White is summarizing the findings of an article written by sociologists at Northwestern University. Since I can’t readily access Kevern, A. & Freese, J., “Differential Fertility as a Determinant of Trends in Public Opinion about Abortion in the United States,” Northwestern University, I will assume White’s excerpt and summary is accurate.
“Although prochoice views became more common from the 1960s through the 1980s, the trend seems to have reached a plateau and maybe even reversed in the last two decades, especially among the younger generation…”
The rest of his sentence is the question this study partly answers:
“despite liberalizing attitudes towards other social issues.”
Well, guess what? “Pro-choicers” are having fewer children than we are. And “given that offspring tend to adopt their parents’ attitudes,” there are (surprise, surprise) “fewer prochoice individuals in the next generation.”
According to White,
“the sociologists found that ‘if family size were uncorrelated with abortion attitudes, the resulting population would be about five percentage points more prochoice than is presently observed’ and that ‘this pattern does not simply reflect a broader trend toward higher fertility among those who are more politically conservative.’”
I have read that paragraph maybe twenty times. It’s awkwardly written but I think he is saying that they are saying there is a 5% lower pro-choice sentiment because of the larger pro-life family size. I think.
Of course it is not only that pro-life families tend to be larger and pro-choice families smaller and that kids tend to adopt their parents’ attitudes. That alone would simply not be enough to account for what makes pro-abortionists tremble and pro-lifers rejoice: younger people as a whole are markedly more pro-life.
There are a million reasons younger people not reared in pro-life families come to understand that abortion is not an “answer” to a “problem.” It is the problem. We write about those factors every day.
The common denominator? Everything under the sun, actually. It’s a broad-based “conspiracy”: ultrasounds, pro-life education, countless advertisements that treat the unborn as already a member of the family, women in highly visibility situations joyously sharing the development of their child with the larger world, to name just a few.
And we should never forget youthful idealism. That is a potent antidote to the poisonous idea that unborn children are disposable items.
Good news all around.