Marquette Warrior: Planned Parenthood Advocates Abortion to Reduce Crime

Friday, September 30, 2005

Planned Parenthood Advocates Abortion to Reduce Crime

The politically correct banshees are after Bill Bennett for saying, in the context of the economic effects of legalized abortion:
. . . it’s true that if you wanted to reduce crime, you could — if that were your sole purpose, you could abort every black baby in this country, and your crime rate would go down. That would be an impossible, ridiculous, and morally reprehensible thing to do, but your crime rate would go down.
How terrible! How offensive! How racist!

The fact that it’s true doesn’t matter. Neither does the fact that Bennett is explicitly condemning the idea.

Of course, aborting every white baby in the country would reduce crime too. But since blacks are more likely to commit crimes than whites, if you want to reduce crime by killing babies, killing black babies is the efficient way to do it.

Just as, if you wanted to radically reduce rape, castrating all males would be splendidly effective.

But interestingly, Planned Parenthood also claims that a benefit of abortion is the reduction of crime.

Yes, it’s in an official publication of theirs titled “Medical and Social Health Benefits Since Abortion Was Made Legal in the U.S.” Quoting:
The legalization of abortion was a significant factor in the dramatic drop in crime in the U.S. in the 1990s.
  • Previous research has established that a strong link exists between an adverse family environment and future criminal behavior; that maternal rejection is counted among the various qualitative aspects of parenting that provide the most accurate predictors of juvenile delinquency; and that having been born of a pregnancy that was unwanted by one’s mother is a circumstance that increases a person’s risk of committing violent crime (David, et al., 1988; Donohue & Levitt, 2001).
  • At least one study reported that legalized abortion can account for about half the observed decline in crime in the U.S. since 1991. Homicide rates have fallen more than 40 percent, and violent crime and property crime have fallen more than 30 percent.
  • The timing of the drop in crime corresponds to the period in which the first generation of children born after the legalization of abortion are reaching what are considered to be the peak ages of criminal activity (18–24 years old). Furthermore, states that legalized abortion before the rest of the nation did so were also the first states to experience decreasing crime rates.
  • States with high abortion rates have seen a greater fall in crime since 1985, even after taking into account other factors that would be expected to influence the crime rate. Furthermore, these declines in crime rates in high-abortion states are disproportionately concentrated among those under the age of 25 (Donohue & Levitt, 2001).
[Update: The document on the Planned Parenthood web site (link above) has now been sanitized to remove any mention of abortion for crime control. However, you can view an archived version of that document here.]

Planned Parenthood is too delicate to mention race, but they must be aware of the following statistics:
  • Race - 63% of abortion patients are white, however, black women are more than 3 times as likely to have an abortion, and Hispanic women are 2.5 times as likely.
And the article they cite on this point, written by John J. Donohue III and Steven D. Levitt, is perfectly explicit about racial differences in both abortions and homicides:
Fertility declines for black women [after Roe v. Wade] are three times greater than for whites (12 percent compared with 4 percent). Given that homicide rates of black youths are roughly nine times higher than those of white youths, racial differences in the fertility effects of abortion are likely to translate into greater homicide reductions. Under the assumption that those black and white births eliminated by legalized abortion would have experienced the average criminal propensities of their respective races, then the predicted reduction in homicide is 8.9 percent. In other words, taking into account differential abortion rates by race raises the predicted impact of abortion legalization on homicide from 5.4 percent to 8.9 percent.
Thus, if Planned Parenthood bothered to read the article they cite, they have to understand that “fertility declines” among black women are a key part of their argument.

So let’s do a little moral audit here:

Bennett points out, quite correctly, that aborting all black babies would reduce the crime rate, and then denounces that idea as “morally reprehensible.”

Planned Parenthood, which knows perfectly well that black babies are being aborted at a disproportionate rate, explicitly champions abortion as a way of reducing crime rates.

And guess who’s attacked as “racist?”


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