In Mississippi, an abortion bill is working its way through the state legislature. It would restrict abortions to the first fifteen weeks of pregnancy. Pro-lifers celebrate this as one more step towards the total abolition of the procedure. Pro-choicers bemoan this as yet one more measure that will shackle women to their biology and reduce them to potentially unwilling baby-makers.

But what is little discussed is what anti-abortion measures do to the abortion rate.

What do I mean? Let me explain. Before the national legalization of abortion, it was left up to states to decide their abortion laws. Four states, New York, Washington, Hawaii, and Alaska, permitted abortion ‘on demand’. A full thirty banned the procedure under any circumstances — including the health of the mother.

In an anomaly, the South in the sixties was more reasonable about abortions in the case of rape, incest, fetal deformity than New England was.

Today the anti-abortion activists would be delighted to have an America much the same as it was pre-Roe. Except they ignore one statistic — the abortion rate. Banning legal abortion only reduces the legal abortion rate. Women who want an abortion will still likely find access to one.

The Guttmacher Institute, a center for the study of reproduction in America, extrapolated data from one state to estimate the number of illegal abortions in America before legalization. Here are the results reported in Scientific American

extrapolating data from North Carolina to the nation as a whole, 699,000 illegal abortions occurred in the U.S. during 1955, and 829,000 illegal procedures were performed in 1967.

Other estimates have the number as high as 1.2 million annually.

The lesson is simple. If you want to reduce abortions, you have to reduce the number of unwanted pregnancies. And it is here that the anti-abortion crowd either drops the ball — if you want to be charitable — or displays its disdain for women — if you’re going to be more accurate.

If they were serious about protecting women, they would promote effective sex ed and free access to contraception. A bowl of condoms in every classroom at the very least.

But instead — under the guise of religious freedom and biblical morality — they do everything to make it difficult and expensive for women to get contraception. And to ice that hate-cake they promote ‘abstinence-only’ sex ed.

Teens and young adults have sex. They always have. Evolution has selected for active libidos. It is shocking hypocritical for adults who casually commit adultery and addictively pay for commercial sex to expect better impulse control in youth (yes, I’m talking about you, David Vitter).

When you restrict legal abortion without addressing the causes of unwanted pregnancies, you neither protect women nor significantly reduce abortion. What you do is promote the dangerous backstreet version of the procedure or push women into self-induction.

You cannot claim to be ‘pro-life’ when your policies do nothing to achieve their stated aim while they simultaneously put the lives of women at risk.


A Satanist Argues that a Government-Free Abortion Is Her God-Granted Right.

October 9, 2017

The loudest voices for ‘freedom of religion’ in the US are white conservative Christians. Typically, these same folks also claim that America was founded as a Judeo/Christian nation. Revealing that  ‘freedom’ is not their object  —  establishing a Christianity theocracy is. Which makes the case of a Missouri Satanic Temple member so compelling. Here’s a woman, known only as […]

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Donald Trump Campaigns To Be Sadist In Chief.

March 30, 2016

“The healthy man does not torture others – generally it is the tortured who turn into torturers.’ – Carl Jung Donald Trump’s campaign has taken a turn for the worse – and who knew there was a worse? He is now threatening to ban all abortions and punish women who get one. It is a frightening […]

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It’s Not Pro-life; It’s Pro Pain.

September 3, 2015

“People speak sometimes about the “bestial” cruelty of man, but that is terribly unjust and offensive to beasts, no animal could ever be so cruel as a man, so artfully, so artistically cruel” ― Fyodor Dostoyevsky Anti-abortionists claim ‘sanctity of life’ underpins their expedient ‘pro-life’ belief that they are doing God’s work in denying pregnant […]

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You cannot call yourself “pro-life” if your interest in life’s sanctity ends at birth.

August 29, 2015

“In my world, you don’t get to call yourself “pro-life” and be against common-sense gun control — like banning public access to the kind of semiautomatic assault rifle, designed for warfare, that was used recently in a Colorado theater. You don’t get to call yourself “pro-life” and want to shut down the Environmental Protection Agency, […]

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Equal rights. A Survey: The Good, the Bad, and the Merely Puzzling

May 27, 2015

“I believe a Christian muffler shop owner should have the same right to refuse service to a gay couple, as a gay lifeguard has to refuse service to a drowning Christian.” ― Quentin R. Bufogle The Irish overwhelmingly voted to legalize gay marriage in Ireland. God shows his approval for equal rights in the skies […]

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Christianity and Unplanned Pregnancy.

May 25, 2015

“Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity” ― Martin Luther King Jr. You want to raise your kids as good Christians – particularly your daughters. So you demand that your children ‘save it’ for marriage. To promote this, you create such monstrosities as ‘purity balls’ – where daughters pledge […]

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Really? 8.3.14 – Abortion Follies; Bigotry; Perry Lies; & the GOP Love Affair with Corporations

August 3, 2014

Abortion caused the national debt. Absurd? Yes. But what the hell. All’s fair in the debate over women’s choice. The claim goes like this. Fifty five million abortions since Roe vs Wade have stripped the US economy of a 1/3 of its tax base. Those extra people would have contributed $45 trillion to the nation’s wealth […]

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Really? 7.23.14 – Texas hates on women; Politicians with ADHD; Ignoring evidence; Cruel, but not so unusual; ACA games.

July 23, 2014

“And what sort of lives do these people, who pose as being moral, lead themselves? My dear fellow, you forget that we are in the native land of the hypocrite.” – Oscar Wilde Texas wants them barefoot and pregnant. Texas promotes abstinence-only sex ed. It has slashed funding for family planning services. It has so regulated […]

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