Right Hooks

Abortion Rate Declining in Developed Countries, but Why?

Sadly, there is no great pro-life awakening in the West.

Culture Beat · May 12, 2016

A new survey reveals that the abortion rate in wealthy developed countries has fallen to a record low while remaining neutral in impoverished countries. As reported by the Associated Press, “The rate in rich countries fell to an all-time low between 1990 and 2014, from about 46 abortions per 1,000 women in 1990 to 27 abortions per 1,000 women in 2014. But in the developing world, the rate remained virtually unchanged, at about 37 abortions per 1,000 women.”

It’s critical to note however that these results are not because of any great pro-life awakening in the West. Rather it’s because birth rates are way down and more abortions are done with morning-after pills that don’t count in statistics. Even still, “[S]cientists found that 56 million abortions are performed globally every year among women aged 15 to 44, and that about one in four pregnancies ends in abortion.”

Writing in The Wall Street Journal, Janet Adamy says, “The U.S. is experiencing a baby lull that looks set to last for years, a shift demographers say will likely ripple through the U.S. economy and have an impact on everything from maternity wards to federal social programs.” The cultural and societal impacts of abortion aside, a growing population is one of the key elements to a healthy economy. The abortion lobby argues that broadening access to taxpayer-funded birth control, particularly among impoverished nations, where the AP says “nearly 90 percent of the abortions worldwide occur” — is a bipartisan solution to lowering the abortion rate. But even that misses the point — why are we rearing fewer children in the first place?

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