Thursday, August 4

Country at Odds Over Sanctity of Life Issues

The Pew Reserach Center released results from a poll on America's view on abortion. Here is the real story on Abortion. This from Pew:
A consistent majority of Americans (65%) are opposed to overturning the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision establishing a woman's right to abortion. But most Americans also favor restrictions on abortion. Nearly three-quarters (73%) favor requiring women under age 18 to get parental consent before being allowed to get an abortion.

This ambivalence is reflected in opinions on the overall availability of abortion. About a third (35%) say abortion should be generally available, but 23% favor stricter limits on abortion and 31% favor making it illegal except in cases of rape, incest or to save a woman's life. Only about one-in-ten (9%) say abortion should never be permitted. Moreover, while nearly six-in-ten (59%) think it would be a good thing to reduce the number of abortions in the U.S., one-third (33%) say they don't feel this way.
This from a CitizenLink email reporting on this story:
Pew found that most Americans favor restrictions on abortion but are not sure how to accomplish that goal. While 73 percent agree that parental-consent laws are important and 59 percent would like to see the number of abortions reduced, 65 percent oppose overturning Roe v. Wade -- the 1973 Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion on demand.

Focus on the Family Action Bioethics Analyst Carrie Gordon Earll isn't so sure the last number is accurate.

"The Pew survey exemplifies a common misconception about abortion and Roe v Wade," she said. "Most Americans have no idea that Roe, in conjunction with its companion ruling, Doe v Bolton, allows abortion for any reason during the entire nine months of pregnancy -- even for minors without parental knowledge and paid by tax dollars.

"When you consider the number of respondents to the Pew survey who said, for instance, that they want parental notification or consent, this is not what Roe represents."

Also discussed in the survey were the issues of embryonic stem-cell research, physician-assisted suicide and the death penalty. Fifty-five percent of conservative Republicans oppose both research resulting in the destruction of life and euthanasia.

In contrast, only 15 percent of liberal Democrats oppose embryonic stem-cell research and only 30 percent oppose euthanasia.