Beliefnet News

Beliefnet News


Report: Support for Abortion on Decline in America

posted by mconsoli

WASHINGTON (RNS) Support for abortion is declining across the country, with Americans now evenly divided on whether it should be legal, a new report shows.
In 2007 and 2008, supporters of legal abortion more clearly outnumbered opponents, but recent surveys by the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press found that 47 percent now say it should be legal in all or most cases and 44 percent believe it should be illegal all or most of the time.
Those figures represent a shift away from support for abortion rights in previous years, when 54 percent of respondents supported legal abortion and 40 percent who thought abortion should be illegal.
Researchers found a broad range of Americans with significantly less support for abortion, including white mainline Protestants and white Catholics who attend worship services at least weekly, and Jews.
While increasing percentages of Republicans are opposed to legal abortion, Democrats now are more likely to be undecided.
Pollsters found an increase in Americans who agree that reducing abortions is a good idea, from 59 percent in 2005 to 65 percent this year.
The report, released Thursday (Oct. 1) jointly with the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life, involved a total national sample of 4,013 adults and had a margin of error of plus or minus 2 percentage points. The sample was based on phone interviews conducted in August.
A separate report released Thursday by the group Catholics for Choice found that 48 percent of Catholic registered voters said abortion should be legal in all or most cases, compared to 37 percent who thought it should be legal in a few instances, and 14 percent who said it should never be legal.
Slightly more than two-thirds (68 percent) of those surveyed said they disagreed that, as Catholics, they should completely oppose health care reform if it includes abortion coverage.
That survey of 932 Catholic voters by the Washington research firm Belden Russonello and Stewart had a margin of error of plus or minus 3.2 percentage points.
By Adelle M. Banks
Copyright 2009 Religion News Service. All rights reserved. No part of this transmission may be distributed or reproduced without written permission.



  • Nate W

    Promising signs. I’ve heard it said many times that the younger generations of Americans, even young women who identify as feminists, are less likely to be as supportive of abortion as older people. As pagansister would put it, it’s nice to see people who are “thinking for themselves” rather than just adopting the orthodoxy of the old folk.

  • pagansister

    Yes, NateW., it is nice to see people “thinking for themselves rather than adopting the orthodoxy of the old folk”. I think abortion should NEVER be outlawed, but available for those who seek it. I much perfer that it never happen, however.

  • Scott R.

    Amen Pagansister.

  • Bob

    I disagree. I think murdering you’re own child (or anyone else’s) should be ILLEGAL.
    Call me old fashioned.

  • Scott R.

    It’s not a child – at least not in the first trimester.

  • pagansister

    Bob, you will never have to make that decision, since I’m assuming you’re not a woman. Thus you really don’t have a right to deprive a woman of something she feels necessary, after much heart rendering thought. As I said,I’d prefer it never happen, but then again, it isn’t my right to make a woman have to go to a butcher or do it herself, for a procedure that can be done safely.

  • cknuck

    When are you ever not you a baby’s heart starts beating 22 days after conception and it upon obtaining life outside of it’s beating heart depends on the mother for life.

  • Henrietta22

    A persons body belongs to that person, and no govenment should control the choice of the person carrying a fetus. When that happens a woman is no longer her own agent. If it happens, educated women will use hormone pills and contraceptives without fail. The others will be slaves for the govenment and the society that controls their freedom of choice, much like before RoevsWade.

  • nnmns

    So cknuck you think your dad’s sperm hit your mom’s egg and suddenly there you were?! That’s utterly silly; the fact is we develop slowly.
    “47 percent now say it should be legal in all or most cases and 44 percent believe it should be illegal all or most of the time”
    The headline could at least as well have been The Majority of Americans Still Support the Right to Abortion.
    People tend to forget about the value of a right when they take it for granted. Fewer and fewer people now alive remember how desperately women and families needed abortions when they were illegal and the things they would do to get them. Coathangers. Back alley butchers who claimed to be able to do them but killed a lot of women.
    It seems to be really easy for some men to tell women they can’t have an abortion but they’d better hope their daughter never makes a mistake and their wife never gets pregnant when she’s too sick to carry it to term or when they are too poor for her to stop working.

  • Confessoressa

    Many women have abortions out of a deep concern for the life growing inside them. I have known a woman who was raped and became pregnant and seriously deliberated whether it would be better for this life to be born into an abusive situation which would most likely create all kinds of developmental pain or to end the life before it got much under way. That woman chose to have the child and the child does indeed suffer greatly and unjustly because of this situation. I also know a woman who was abusing illicit drugs when she became pregnant and knowing that this life, if born, would most likely suffer greatly for the behavior of the mother. She chose to abort.
    This is no more murder than those that believe quality of life is important to the decision to be alive.
    Mothers are the best humans to make these choices.

  • Heretic_for_Christ

    The most interesting factoid in the story is the statistic that 65% of respondents think it is a good idea to reduce the number of abortions. This baffles me: does it mean that over one third of Americans think the number of abortions performed should be maintained or even increased?
    Why is this question even an issue? Should everyone be able to agree that the number should be reduced? Those who support right-to-life want it reduced to zero by encouraging abstinence and by legislative action to preclude this option if non-abstainers find themselves with an unwanted pregnancy, and those who support right-to-choose want it reduced by improved education and acceess to contraceptive products and services to reduce the frequency of unwanted pregnancy.
    So why isn’t this statistic–Americans who want the number of abortions reduced–100%?

  • pagansister

    “So why isn’t this statistic-Americans who want the number of abortions reduced–100%?” H4C
    Good point. Those in their right minds should want abortions to decrease, and it would be nice if they weren’t sometimes necessary. But they are sometimes necessary, so they should remain legal and safe.

  • Agape123

    Bob,
    I won’t call you “old fashioned”, merely misinformed (and mis-/dis-informing). Abortion simply is not “murder”.
    Besides, personal medical health choices – just like other human rights and liberties choices – should never be put to a ‘popular vote’.
    If your religion says abortion is “wrong”, then don’t have one. Odd that still a majority of Catholics – a religion that teaches strongly against it – think abortion should be legal.) Meanwhile, what of those people who’s religion does not teach that terminating pregnancies is “wrong”? Why don’t they have the right to believe – and act on – their own tenets?

  • Heretic_for_Christ

    Following up on the earlier point, about only 65% of respondents thinking it would be good to reduce the number of abortions–and why isn’t that number 100%?
    I would find it incredible if ANYONE thought the incidence of abortion should be maintained or increased. Therefore, I must wonder how the question was worded. On any kind of survey, you can get wildly different rates of response depending on how questions are worded. For example, suppose that opponents of legal abortion
    interpreted “reduce the number” as meaning “Keep it legal but reduce the number.” Then they might answer No, they don’t support that.
    Which raises this question: Until such time as abortion ever becomes re-criminalized, DO abortion opponents want to see the number of procedures reduced? Or do they really view it as an all-or-nothing issue in which they would oppose any policy that might reduce abortions now because the only outcome they want to see is total abolition?

  • nnmns

    H4C it’s just possible those 35% of people realize abortions have become hard to get and some (perhaps many) women and families who need them have not been able to get them.
    I hope many of us can agree abortion should be safe, legal, available and rare.

  • jestrfyl

    Has anyone thought to see if there is a correspondence between the drop in support and the drop in need? As young people (male and female) have been better educated about intentional and responsible choices the need has diminished. As that needs goes down the general population no longer sees it as a pressing problem. We need to keep this cause and effect in front of us. Education sure does seem to yield good results. At the same time, we as a nation need to accept that a woman who is old enough to raise a child is also old enough to deal with this very difficult decision.

  • cknuck

    There is no doubt in my mind that abortion is murder, you have the right to believe that if you take a life in that way it is not. As for if the child is going to have a hard life or even be abused being a part of the decision that’s not enough reason to kill I had a hard life and I know many others that have also but I’m so glad to be alive and i have made some positive impacts on people even saved lives. I don’t think we understand life enough to terminate it in any situation especially for those who are not able to speak for themselves.

  • nnmns

    I don’t believe I, or cknuck, or anyone who’s not a potential mother or a member of a family in dire straits understand their situation enough to even think of dictating to them what they should do in such a situation.

  • pagansister

    Well said, nnmns.
    cknuck, you seem to think it is OK to bring a child into this world to suffer when the woman knows it will be born in a horrible situation. There are already enough children here in this country and others who suffer incredibly through no fault of their own, and die horrible deaths from starvation, or illness or die at the hands of a “parent” who has no business being a parent….baby won’t stop crying…shake it to death! Wouldn’t it be great if all babies born were wanted and loved? Life doesn’t work that way.

  • cknuck

    pagan of all those situations you named most abortions here in the US have nothing to do with them. Most of the people that are in the situations you have describe rarely get abortions. Most abortions in the US are committed for convenience sake or because the baby is a inconvenient consequent of not so well planned out sexual excursions involving not so poor women, its not about rape it’s not about poverty it’s about lack of education and convenience.

  • Heretic_for_Christ

    I suspect that cknuck is correct about the situations in which the majority of abortions take place in America. But even if that is so, then the option for termination of pregnancy would still be important in certain cases. As for the rest, I would hope that we all can agree that prevention of unwanted pregnancy is the best way to reduce the numbers of abortions performed, and that any effective and non-coercive means of prevention should be applied. Abstinence counseling? Sure–but also realistic sex education and accessible contraception. Years ago, when I taught science to middle-schoolers in a private school, the subject sometimes came up, and my students were amused when I told them frankly that sex is an enormously powerful human drive, and anything that powerful can be hazardous if approached irresponsibly–and even though they, as children, they were not emotionally mature enough for sex, they shouldn’t feel bad, because lots of adults are not mature enough, either.

  • pagansister

    cknuck, Whatever the reason a woman chooses to not complete a pregnancy, whether she be financially fine or not, the safe option should always be available. The reasons are the woman’s business to deal with, she has to live with them. It isn’t up to anyone else to approve or disapprove. And as H4C rightly said, birth control and education are preferable, most certainly no arguement there.

  • GodsCountry

    “”…the safe option should always be available…””
    Quite right! Let’s also make it resoundingly safe and wonderfully comfortable and absolutely legal for women to do all this with their own bodies;
    Enjoy three Martini’s every lunch and end the day with up to a fifth of tequila each night; smoke like chimneys; enjoy opium, smack and coke until their “real” problems are a fading memory; end their own life because they are sad or broke up with “the one”; eat cake, chocolate and bratwursts until they explode; carve themselves with razor blades; diet until one has to “look twice to see them”; overeat and then simply puke to cut those calories; stick with that ornery oaf of a boyfriend, even if the black-eyes are tough to cover even with pancake makeup; kill the helpless, innocent life that lives within her own womb because the child will be a drag on her “style-health”.
    It’s a new movement! Woman’s Libertarianism!
    The audacious libertines!

  • pagansister

    Whatever, GC, Whatever.

  • nnmns

    GC go listen to Rush and raise your blood pressure still a little more. Or maybe take your meds and get your news from more objective sources and leave out the commentators entirely.
    It depends on whether you want to live a longer, healthier, saner life or you want that adrenaline rush you get from your favorite crazy talkers.

  • cknuck

    H4C I do agree that sex is an enormously powerful human drive and in my opinion one of the greatest gifts God ever gave people. But I also think as long as people lend toward treating that gift on a pagan level, like any gift misused it not only is dangerous but it will become even more deadly. Death should never be the result of a gift given so lovingly, AIDS, abortions, herpes, STDs, rape and other things I won’t name but I know you know what I mean come from the low regard of the gift of sexuality. By the time we past the gift of sexuality on to our kids, it is no longer a gift but something of little meaning.

  • GodsCountry

    “Projection can … be established as a means of obtaining or justifying certain actions that would normally be found atrocious or heinous. This often means projecting false accusations, information, etc onto an individual for the sole purpose of maintaining a self created illusion.”
    A definition of psychological projection.

  • pagansister

    Oh wow! “psychological projection “.

  • Better than U

    GC,
    “Let’s also make it resoundingly safe and wonderfully comfortable and absolutely legal for women to do all this with their own bodies;
    Enjoy three Martini’s every lunch and end the day with up to a fifth of tequila each night; smoke like chimneys; enjoy opium, smack and coke until their “real” problems are a fading memory; end their own life because they are sad or broke up with “the one”; eat cake, chocolate and bratwursts until they explode; carve themselves with razor blades; diet until one has to “look twice to see them”; overeat and then simply puke to cut those calories; stick with that ornery oaf of a boyfriend, even if the black-eyes are tough to cover even with pancake makeup”

    What the F**K does any of these imaginings have to do with the topic, GC? You speak of “audacious libertines” yet you seem to be an audacious teller of outrageous, irrelevant scary falsehoods.

  • GodsCountry

    …irrelevant, scary falsehoods seem to have gotten to you.
    In the big, scary way that truth hurts.
    Thanks for copying my post – more will read it.

  • Poupon U

    “Let’s also make it resoundingly safe and wonderfully comfortable and absolutely legal for women to do all this with their own bodies;
    Enjoy three Martini’s every lunch and end the day with up to a fifth of tequila each night; smoke like chimneys; enjoy opium, smack and coke until their “real” problems are a fading memory; end their own life because they are sad or broke up with “the one”; eat cake, chocolate and bratwursts until they explode; carve themselves with razor blades; diet until one has to “look twice to see them”; overeat and then simply puke to cut those calories; stick with that ornery oaf of a boyfriend, even if the black-eyes are tough to cover even with pancake makeup”

  • Heretic_for_Christ

    Indoctrinate children to believe that God is a genocidal maniac! Teach them that their own rationality is a trap of Satan! Deceive people into straying from faith in God into idolatrous faith in the Bible! Promote incoherent bigotry against imagined sociopolitical enemies! Proclaim yourself Spokesman for the Lord! Jabber on endlessly about God’s truth and speak only in demonic lies!
    It’s the New Christianity! The Gospel According to GC!

  • Heretic_for_Christ

    PS to previous:
    But you keep on with it, GC. A delusional ninny like you is the best friend the opponents of Christianity could ever hope for.

  • pagansister

    H4C, GC is “the best friend the opponents of Christianity could ever hope for.”
    Hit the nail on the head, H4C.

  • cknuck

    Actually H4C people like you and jest are the best friends opponents of Christianity could hope for, you dilute the word of God make mockery of Jesus’ deity make simple the Holy Spirit and look more like Jesus’ enemies than His friends. Even the pagans and atheist agree with you but not to further the kingdom but to malign it.

  • pagansister

    Actually, cknuck, speaking only for myself, I find the tolerance and love expressed for all human beings is the example that jestrfyl, H4C and a few others(Henrietta22) set on these boards, and are examples of what I think Christianity to be. IMO, JC would be proud…he was tolerant of differences. In my personal life, my sisters, and friends who chose to be Christian are my examples. There are many, many paths to that kingdom you want to reach…all work.

  • cknuck

    pagan I am happy you have found those examples they just don’t work for me because they are more in line with your form of belief paganism, and that is not what Jesus preached, I believe in the bible and they don’t.

  • GodsCountry

    “…he was tolerant of differences…”
    …yep, allows those who deny Him to enter Hell.
    “…There are many, many paths to that kingdom you want to reach…all work…”
    …nope. There is only one way. Blind guides who say differently will find their choice destination matches those who deny God, but deeper and much, much more remorseful.

  • Your Name

    GC, you have the most narrow view of the world. You actually believe in hell? That is a tool used by those in power in some churches to keep folks under their thumbs. Since it doesn’t exist…not a worry for me. Doesn’t your Christianity belive that JC was a loving person, understanding person? Didn’t he teach that his dad was loving too? You make that god sound as rathful as the one in the OT. Which is it…OT god or NT god? So how do you teach love and hell in the same breath? What a farce! What is really sad? Teaching children that they will go to hell if they displease that invisible power. That is sad. As to abortion choices? Better in some cases then teaching children about your version of Christianity. There are so many paths to happiness…and JC and his dad aren’t the only ones. Kingdom? Disney World I assume.

  • pagansister

    Above was mine: pagansister

  • GodsCountry

    “”…You actually believe in hell?…””
    …yes; reading your posts!
    HA!
    LOL

  • pagansister

    Yes, GC, that is funny, because you actually do believe in that place. How does one live with the threat of an imaginary place hanging over your head, to make you follow rules set down in a 2000 year old inaccurate book? Totally not natural.

  • Gwyddion9

    pagansister,
    It’s based on fear. You’ll do what your told if you think your bahoogies are going to be roasted. Simply a method of keeping the flock in line.

  • pagansister

    Oh yes, Gwyddion9, it is definitely based on fear. Why anyone would choose to live that way is beyond me. Life is good…why ruin it believing in “hell”?

  • GodsCountry

    “”…Life is good…””
    Like I said; it rains on the good and the evil. Your day may come when you will be on your knees crying out for God to save you and that is far better than it never happening and dieing in delusions of “happiness”. Why? All will be judged. Only the “happy” pagans and atheists will be surprised.
    You have been warned and are now without excuse. Repent. Follow God.
    Or be damned.

  • pagansister

    “You have been warned and are now without excuse. Repent. Follow God. Or be damned”. GC’s words of warning
    Oh PLEASE! That is pathetic.

  • http://auctions.fastrealestate.net buy forclosed homes

    Well… I visit your website first time and found this site very useful and interesting! Well… you guys doing nice work and I just want to say that keep rocking and keep it up!!!!
    Elenora

  • buy Elenora

    There is nothing called a free lunch is this world. If anything needed to be resolved then initiated need a support to be sorted out.
    Elenora
    buy forclosed homes

  • Elenora

    Love your site. Is there anything I can do to help YOU? I have been telling my friends to visit your site. Thanks to you, the information was unavailable. Now I am getting action. I can. Just let me know. Blessings and good wishes to all of you!! You are doing a tremendous service!
    Elenora
    buy forclosed homes

  • conner murphy

    A great site for post abortion stories is ForgivenMe, a Web site that helps support your post stress.

Previous Posts

Hispanics turning evangelical, Jews secular
Worship service attendance is up in New York City, but down among young adult Jews, according to recent studies. On the other hand, fewer Spanish-speaking teens are attending Catholic mass, but more are showing up at Evangelical churches. [caption id="attachment_12343" align="alignleft" width="48

posted 3:10:30pm Nov. 05, 2013 | read full post »

Billy Graham: I know where I'm going
“Daddy thinks the Lord will allow him to live to 95,” said Franklin Graham recently. It was not a prophecy but a hope, Franklin explained, that he would live to see the beginning of a Christian re

posted 10:02:01am Oct. 24, 2013 | read full post »

Are All These Christians' Complaints of Persecution Just So Much Empty Whining?
The headlines are alarming: “Catholic-Owned Company Wins Religious Freedom Court Decision,” “Death Toll Rises to 65 in Boko Haram Attack on Students,” “Little Sisters Catholic Charity Victimized By Obamacare,” “Christians Sought Out, Murdered in the Kenyan Mall Massacre,” “Judicial

posted 2:41:26am Oct. 07, 2013 | read full post »

How can Christians defend themselves against today's random violence?
So, a crazed gunman opens fire and you’re caught in the middle. How can you survive? Heroes come in all sorts of packages. And they wield all sorts of defensive weapons. Such as guns and Jesus. Sometimes both at the same time. [caption id="attachment_12246" align="alignleft" width="480"] Ant

posted 2:53:48pm Sep. 27, 2013 | read full post »

Does Sunday Morning Church Really Need All This Glitter, Showmanship and Gimmickry?
What’s wrong with church today? Are we in danger of turning worship into a flashy concert? Of watering down the message so nobody is offended? Of forgetting the simplicity of the Gospel? I grew up with a preacher’s kid. He was a fake following in the footsteps of his flimflamming father who d

posted 11:26:20am Sep. 20, 2013 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.