Janice Shaw Crouse

When we look at the birthrate in the United States beginning in 1900, we see a very different picture than the progress-began-with-Roe-v-Wade folks imply. From 1900 to 1933, the birthrate declined 44 percent without the pill and without legal abortion. The post-WWII baby boom of the 1950s aside, the birthrate today is only 15 percent lower than it was in 1933.

Does abortion then actually lower the birthrate? To test this idea, it would seem that if this were the case, the effect would show up most powerfully in the birthrate of unmarried women, who presumably would be most inclined to resort to abortion to escape the responsibilities of an unplanned, unwanted pregnancy. Here again, the facts run against the conclusion that the left would have us assume — without proof — to be the case.

The “legalization” of abortion initially produced only a very modest decrease in the unwed birthrate. Subsequently, the increase in non-marital, promiscuous sexual activity — promoted by the same folks who championed abortion as the panacea for unwanted births — produced a 93 percent increase in the birth rate of unmarried women from 1973 to 1994. The unwed birthrate in 2004 was the same as it was in 1994, despite the fact that the unwed abortion rate has been declining. (The abortion rate among unmarried women peaked in 1981 and has declined by 37 percent.)

It can be difficult to rid young children of the conceit that they are the center of the universe and that the only things of any importance are those that focus on them. This creates the propensity to look at life primarily through the lens of what they know from their own limited experience. Likewise, feminists from the Western World see through a gaze clouded by self-absorption. They are blind to the facts of history. They care nothing about how the birth rate changed before and after the legalization of abortion. They will allow nothing to sway them, to deter them from their tireless efforts through the U.N. to export to the third world the plague of death which has brought “demographic winter” to Europe.

The fact is, we could and should be doing more to help poor nations around the world by providing technology and resources for the things that are essential to life and health, things like clean, unpolluted drinking water. Funding abortion in third world countries, however, is another matter altogether. No amount of language twisting –– calling it “family planning” or “women’s reproductive health care” –– will mask the true horror of abortion. The Scripture teaches us, “There is a way which seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death” (Proverbs 14:12).

Janice Shaw Crouse

Janice Shaw Crouse is a former speechwriter for George H. W. Bush and now political commentator for the Concerned Women for America Legislative Action Committee.
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