Star Parker: Abortion, a Sickness in Our National Soul
The perspectives and thoughts expressed in this op-ed are the exclusive purview of the author.
The resounding defeat of Issue 1 in a statewide vote in Ohio is rightly seen as a repudiation of pro-life forces and cause for soul-searching in the movement.
The initiative, which would have raised the threshold vote for amending the state constitution, was understood to be about abortion, because a ballot measure is expected in November to amend the state constitution to secure abortion “rights.”
The measure was defeated 57% to 43% in a state in which Donald Trump defeated Joe Biden in 2020, 53.3% to 45.2%.
One year ago, voters in Kansas, a state in which Trump defeated Biden 56.1% to 41.5%, voted down a ballot measure to amend the state constitution to ban abortion, 59% to 41%.
Unpopularity of the Supreme Court’s Dobbs decision, overturning Roe v. Wade, was one of the explanations given for the underwhelming performance by Republicans in the congressional elections in 2022.
Currently, abortion is legal in 26 states and banned at various levels in the other states.
Per a USA Today/Suffolk University poll, of those who say their view on abortion has changed over the last year, 23% say they have become more supportive of legal abortion and 6% less.
And pro-abortion activists plan more initiatives in states with abortion bans.
The Dobbs decision wasn’t about the moral acceptability of abortion. It was about the Constitution. The decision, written by Samuel Alito, rejected the premise of Roe v. Wade that the U.S. constitution protects a right to abortion.
“The Constitution makes no reference to abortion, and no such right is implicitly protected by any Constitutional provision,” wrote Alito.
Unless action is taken in Congress to enact federal abortion legislation, the issue is turned over to the states.
Pro-abortion forces, post-Dobbs, seem to have been more energized than pro-life forces.
In response to the question, per Gallup, “Will you only vote for a candidate who shares your views on abortion?” 17% of pro-abortion supporters said “yes,” while 10% of pro-life supporters said “yes.”
Overall, per Gallup polling, public sentiment over time has become more tolerant of abortion.
Thirty-four percent, compared to 21% in 1975, say abortion should be legal under any circumstances.
Broken down by trimester, 69% now say abortion should be legal in the first trimester, compared to 64% in 1996. In second trimester, 37% say abortion should be legal, compared to 26% in 1996. And in the third trimester, 22% now say abortion should be legal, compared to 13% in 1996.
What I find particularly alarming is that among Democrats, 44% say abortion should be legal in the third trimester.
We may have differences of opinion about the key abortion issue: When does life begin?
But in the final trimester, the situation is crystal-clear.
With proper care, estimates are that survival chances of a prematurely born child at 25-26 weeks are 80%. At 32 weeks, it is 95%.
Yet, 44% of Democrats believe abortion in this period should be legal. This means that, for them, destroying a living, feeling baby is OK. I think it is called murder.
For sure, these same Democrats, citizens of the left, that see no problem with abortion are outraged that slavery was once permitted in our country.
But just as slavery showed something sick in our national soul, the same is the case with legal abortion.
And just as slavery damaged the nation, so does abortion.
It shows decline of individual grasp of good and evil and hence personal responsibility.
The result is more and more turning to government to pay for the damage caused by broken families, decline of marriage, and advancement of a culture of selfishness.
I think our Republican candidates should be more focused and aggressive in discussing abortion as a symptom of a broader cultural crisis in the country.
Our fiscal bankruptcy and our moral bankruptcy go hand in hand.
Star Parker is president of the Center for Urban Renewal and Education and host of the weekly television show “Cure America with Star Parker.” To find out more about Star Parker and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.
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Last Updated: Tuesday, Aug 15, 2023 11:17:49 -0700
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