Sex, Preaching, and Abortion
You know the colloquial definition of “chutzpah” as well as I do: the man who murders his parents and then throws himself at the mercy of the court because he’s an orphan. As you know by now, our good buddy Newt is steadily exercising more chutzpah than our homicidal orphan. Do you remember that, way back while he was trying to impeach President Clinton for, um, perjury, Gingrich had to resign as Speaker because he was cheating on Marianne? And now he is shocked that the liberal media would bring all that up, despite his career as a moral scold. (“Liberal media” is one word, just like “gays in the military” once was.) He prayed it all away, okay? ‘Nuff said! Ah, just another entertaining moment in the sideshow we call the primaries.
But while you were snorting out your coffee over Newt’s antics, the Guttmacher Institute announced that the drop in the world’s abortion rate has stalled. (Guttmacher is generally respected as the most accurate and nonpartisan source of information on contraception and abortion.) Herewith:
Between 1995 and 2003, the abortion rate (the number of abortions per 1,000 women of childbearing age—i.e., those aged 15-44) for the world overall dropped from 35 to 29. It remained virtually unchanged, at 28, in 2008.
As I understand the report, the earlier drop came as Eastern Europe and large swaths of the developing world got easier access to contraception. But that wasn’t happening between 2003 and 2008. Remember the global gag rule, under which the Bush administration refused to fund local family planning services unless the health care provider agreed to never, ever mention abortion? It will be interesting to see whether the abortion rate falls again during the Obama administration, which lifted the gag.
To me, the most striking bit of information in the full report and associated fact sheets is that, apparently, if you want to reduce abortion, you should make it easier to get one.