25% of pregnancies end in abortion, claims pro-abortion study
12 May 2016
Every abortion kills a living child
There are 56 million abortions every year worldwide, according to a new study published in the Lancet. That means one in every four pregnancies in the world ends in abortion.
The global estimates come from the World Health Organization and the Guttmacher Institute - both groups with strong pro-abortion links. Accordingly, many pro-lifers are wary about the accuracy of their report, as SPUC's Anthony Ozimic explains:
"The Guttmacher Institute and the abortion industry generally has a track record of claiming very dubious figures about the numbers of abortions, particularly illegal abortions. Some pro-abortion campaigners have even admitted inflating or inventing such figures in order to bolster the case for repealing laws against abortion."
Abortion advocates demand weaker abortion laws
And unsurprisingly, abortion advocates have jumped on the study's findings to demand weaker abortion laws, focusing especially on countries in South America.
According to the study, the global abortion rate is actually in decline, even though the overall number of abortions has increased by over five million. However, international pro-life experts refute the researchers' conclusions that pro-life laws do not reduce abortions and that the focus should be on increasing the availability of contraceptives across the world.
The report's conclusions
As LifeSiteNews report:
The study compared the number of abortions between 2010 and 2014 with the number from 1990 to 1994. While the overall number increased by more than five million, from 50.4 million a decade ago, the average rate of abortions declined. Worldwide, the abortion rate is now 35 per 1,000 women aged 15–44 years – down from 40 per 1,000 in the same cohort in the 1990s.
However, the study finds that the decrease did not take place evenly throughout the world.
"Abortion rates have declined significantly since 1990 in the developed world but not in the developing world,” its authors wrote.
They added that in most developed countries, abortion is legal, while it is prohibited by law in nations with a higher abortion rate.
“Ensuring access to sexual and reproductive health care could help millions of women avoid unintended pregnancies and ensure access to safe abortion," they concluded.
However, pro-life leaders have been quick to point out multiple flaws in the authors' conclusions.
For example, a study authored by Phillip B. Levine and Douglas Staiger in 2004 for the Journal of Law and Economics analysed abortion rates in Eastern European countries that changed their abortion policies after the collapse of the Soviet Union. Levine and Staiger concluded that modest restrictions on abortion were effective in reducing abortion rates by around 25 percent.
And pro-lifers have seen what happened following the passage of the 1967 Abortion Act in England, Scotland and Wales, where abortion rates soared from an estimated 20,000 or so per year throughout the 1960s to well over 150,000 just five years later. Today approximately 200,000 abortions are recorded every year in the UK - 552 every single day.
"We fed the public a line of deceit"
A similar increase occurred in the United States after Roe v Wade. One of the original architects of legal abortion in that country, Dr Bernard Nathanson, was very clear about the role of misleading estimates for abortion figures:
"We fed the public a line of deceit, dishonesty, a fabrication of statistics and figures. We succeeded because the time was right and the news media co-operated. We sensationalized the effects of illegal abortions, and fabricated polls which indicated that 85 percent of the public favoured unrestricted abortion, when we knew it was only 5 percent. We unashamedly lied, and yet our statements were quoted (by the media) as though they had been written in law."
Pro-lifers will mourn the death of every unborn child. But in the light of past experience, it may also be wise to take this week's study with a pinch of salt.