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June 9, 2011

Poll: Americans Ambivalent on Abortion

People tend describe themselves as either pro-life or pro-choice. But a new poll by the Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI) shows that the average American still holds conflicting views on abortion nearly 40 years after Roe v. Wade. Evangelicals remain much more opposed to abortion than other Americans, but they, too, often do not fit neatly into pro-life or pro-choice camps.

PRRI Research Director Daniel Cox said, “For some time now, Americans have held a stable tension between two views: majorities both say that abortion is morally wrong and say that it should be legal in all or most cases. The binary ‘pro-life’ and ‘pro-choice’ labels don’t reflect this complexity.”

On the poll's simplest, straightforward abortion question, a majority said abortion should be legal. PRRI found only four-in-ten said abortion should be illegal. However, few took a consistently pro-life or pro-choice position. Only 19 percent said abortion should be legal in all circumstances; 14 percent said it should be always be illegal. That leaves nearly two-thirds approving abortion in some cases but not in others. These results a similar to those by the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press. A similar question by Gallup finds fewer in the middle category, but overall the pattern is the same: most Americans approve of abortion in some, but not all, circumstances.

Among religious groups, white evangelicals stand out as being against abortion. Less than one-third (29 percent) said abortion should be legal; two-thirds believe it should be illegal. Support for the legality of abortion is much higher among other Protestants and Catholics.

This, however, is only part of the story. When asked abortion should be available to women in their community, 37 percent of evangelicals agreed. A majority of non-Latino Catholics and black Protestants said abortion should be available. Over 70 percent of Mainline Protestants and those unaffiliated with religion took this view.

0609Abortion%20Morality%20vs%20Availability.PNG

Support for the availability of abortion does not mean that abortion is seen as morally neutral. Among all religious groups, a majority of adherents believe that abortion is morally wrong. Among evangelicals, less than one-in-five said abortion is morally acceptable. This finding is consistent with surveys by Gallup over the past decade. In most years, a majority of Americans say that abortion is morally wrong while around 40 percent say it is morally acceptable.

With such conflicting attitudes—abortion is immoral but should be acceptable—many Americans are uneasy being labeled as either pro-life or pro-choice. Most Americans said that “pro-choice” described them somewhat or very well (70 percent). At the same time, nearly the same percentage said the same about being “pro-life” (66 percent). This overlap between those who feel comfortable with pro-choice and pro-life labels exists among all major demographic groups.

Among evangelicals, 80 percent said “pro-life” described them well, but nearly half (48 percent) said the same about being “pro-choice.”

The poll shows that Americans advocate abortion laws that are, at best, contradictory. The poll finds that on the one hand the public supports abortions laws that protect the fetus throughout the entire pregnancy (63%) and encourage women to make more responsible decisions (78%), but on the other hand, they also want laws that preserve a woman's freedom to make her own decisions (70%).

The consistently pro-life and pro-choice people are in the minority. A majority of Americans said women should be allowed to have an abortion if her health was endangered, the victim of a rape, or if there is a chance of the child being born with a serious birth defect. However, support drops if the woman is getting the abortion because she is in poverty or if she does not want to marry the father.

With most Americans ambivalent on abortion, it is not surprising that 40 percent said that abortion is not an important issue (compare that to 3 percent who say the economy is not important). But there remains 29 percent who say it is a “critical” issue. And with these voters likely to hold stronger, and more consistent, views on abortion, the fight between pro-life and pro-choice activists is likely to continue despite the ambivalence felt among most Americans.

Editor's Note: The PRRI poll was conducted between April 22 and May 8. 3,000 adults living in the continental U.S. were surveyed. The poll has a margin of error of +/- 2.0 percent. The margin of error for white evangelicals is +/- 3.5 percent. For complete survey details see the PRRI report.

Comments

I was disappointed with your choice to label American attitudes as ambivalent, which I found misleading since it suggests that they simply do not care about abortion. My experience is that they care a great deal, but that their opinions are nuanced. This is actually an indication that they are the opposite of ambivalent, since they do not accept the distinctions offered to them by pundits and journalists and instead work out exactly what they believe on this important issue.

Regarding statisticians Mark Twain once observed, "There are liars, d*** liars, and statisticians." I question the results of this poll.

Perhaps most of the public is saying "Abortion is not OK for *ME* but it's your *CHOICE*". Pro-life for personal decisions, pro-choice when forcing a decision on others.

"Americans Ambivalent on Abortion". Let's qualify this observation a bit for clarity's sake. The title should read, "Americans Ambivalent on OTHER PEOPLE'S Abortions". I'm sure if those "ambivalent Americans" were the abortees and they had a voice to speak, I'm almost positive they would object - mightily - to their imminent slicing, dicing, burning suctioning, dismembering! I tell my students they are indeed lucky. They live in a time when there is no concensus in America as to whether a pre-born child is a person or not - and there is no protection. The fact they made it to delivery means they were not part of the 1.5 million babies/year who were deemed non-persons and therefore were disposed of as if they were only medical refuse. They easily could have been one of the unwanted. Yes, Americans are ambivalent when it comes to abortion all right. No doubt about it. And all this poll proves is how far we as a nation have moved from the Biblical worldview.

"Ambivalent" does NOT mean "doesn't care." It means "Having mixed feelings or contradictory ideas about something," which is precisely what the three different polls, by three different polling firms, conducted at three different times, have reported.

Oh yes, let's get back to the "Biblical worldview" of the Ephesians, Corinthians, and Galatians, whose highest priorities were fighting abortion and gay marriage. Or not.

Would that the Evangelicals were as focused on rescuing the 1.2 million living, breathing, throwing-their-lives-away kids who drop out of school each year as they are for the same number of embryos/fetuses who are aborted each year, 88% of which happen in the first trimester.

I really appreciate 'Christian Lawyer''s point about redirecting our focus to include so many social issue that get forgotten in the shadow of our obsession with gay marriage and abortion. How did we become so focused on these to items? Surely Christan should be know for something other than that.

For me the travesty of the Christian reaction to abortion is the throwing-of-stones condemnation and venom that we hurl at the expense of those to whom we are supposedly trying to minister. I feel this issue is a major shortcoming of our witness.

Though 'Christian Lawyer' is absolutely correct in her/his definition, I so think there could have been a better choice of words in the title.

How about we just open every prison and put to death every prisoner on death row? Also, everyone who has been found guilty of murder. Would there be silence about that? Hardly! Some would shout out "What about those who are innocent?". Well, those millions of aborted babies haven't even had a chance to live, yet it's perfectly fine with some "Christians" to murder them. The law has recognized that babies-in-utero are certainly people, and killers who have killed pregnant women have been charged and found guilty of killing two lives. So no, many of us Christians are not going to remain silent while these murders continue.

A large part of it is about racial genocide, and the founder of Planned Parenthood, Margaret Sanger, was a devout racist. This racism continues today with 78% of Planned Parenthood's clinics in minority communities. If you haven't read about Margaret Sanger you should, she received medals of honor from Adolph Hitler for her role in aborting "inferior" black babies. And that truly was why she started Planned Parenthood, to decrease the numbers of black babies. It's funny that it is largely the conservatives who have to fight to stop abortions, since so many patently false allegations are made against Republicans, as if they are the racist ones. It's the liberals who strongly support Planned Parenthood and the right to murder mainly black babies, and who want to keep the status quo of keeping generation after generation on welfare enslavement, rather than allowing the African-American community to become the best that they can be. Blacks make up 12% of the community, but have 35% of the abortions. You can believe that Hispanics are disproportionately singled out as well. If anyone is going to, or SHOULD speak up for the innocent, it is the Christian community. And it isn't going to go away until abortion goes away.

I interpret this as most people - even if they personally believe abortion is wrong - do not want the government telling them what they can or cannot do with their own lives and bodies. If I was a woman and got pregnant, I know that I would like to be the one to decide what I was going to do, I wouldn't want the government deciding for me. Also, I feel as if many conservatives just want to punish unmarried couples for having sex. It seems to have less to do with the actual abortion because many conservatives are also against sex education and contraceptive use which is clearly linked to people having less unwanted pregnancies and thus less abortions. Western European countries have far lower abortion rates than the U.S. because they teach real sex ed and have more education of and access to contraceptives. So if conservatives were really against abortion, they would be heavily promoting sex ed and contraceptive use but they're not.

CL: Ambivalent also means "lacking or indicating lack of confidence or assurance; "uncertain of his convictions" which is how I meant it. But apparently, you could not tell. So when was the last time you told your mother thank you for not aborting you? You apparently view the pre-born much like the slave holders did their slaves: they were property of the slaveholders and the slave owners pretty much did with their slaves as they liked. Same issue; different era. "Would that the Evangelicals were as focused on rescuing the 1.2 million living, breathing, throwing-their-lives-away kids who drop out of school each year..." Funny, a prog lib chastising evangelicals about cultural engagement. Your movement's contribution to home missions and foreign missions is a mere pittance compared to evangelicalism's. So I wouldn't invite that debate if I were you.

"The law has recognized that babies-in-utero are certainly people, and killers who have killed pregnant women have been charged and found guilty of killing two lives. So no, many of us Christians are not going to remain silent while these murders continue."

-- Actually, the law for many centuries, going back to the Old Testament, was that an unborn fetus was NOT a "person" for the purpose of homicide laws and for the purpose of personal injury laws. Harm to a pregnant woman that caused that woman to deliver a still born child was only one crime -- the harm to the woman. It was only if the child was born alive and later died from the injuries caused to it in utero that the perpetrator could be charged with two crimes -- one against the pregnant woman and one against the child who was "born alive." Until the laws were changed recently, one had to be "born alive" to be considered the victim of a crime or to have any rights at all.

"A large part of it is about racial genocide, and the founder of Planned Parenthood, Margaret Sanger, was a devout racist. This racism continues today with 78% of Planned Parenthood's clinics in minority communities.... [Sanger] received medals of honor from Adolph Hitler for her role in aborting "inferior" black babies. And that truly was why she started Planned Parenthood, to decrease the numbers of black babies.... It's the liberals who strongly support Planned Parenthood and the right to murder mainly black babies, and who want to keep the status quo of keeping generation after generation on welfare enslavement, rather than allowing the African-American community to become the best that they can be. Blacks make up 12% of the community, but have 35% of the abortions."

-- Margarent Sanger, along with many others who saw the light, dabbled in eugenics at the early part of the 20th century. Her views were aimed at helping poor (many married) women of all races and ethnicities gain control over their own bodies. She never even met Hitler. Shall we view Jerry Falwell, Pat Robertson, and others, not to mention the entire Southern Baptist (and other) denomination as if they stll supported Jim Crow segregation? PP clinics are in "black" neighborhoods because that's where there are lots of poor people. Black women have a proportionately larger share of abortions because black women are disproportionately poor and poor women have more abortions that wealthy or middle income women. This conspiracy propaganda about black genocide is just that -- conspiracy propaganda who must impose their view on others. Here's a scholarly piece about Sanger and her alleged racism. http://www.nyu.edu/projects/sanger/secure/newsletter/articles/sanger-hitler_equation.html

Please remember that Roe v. Wade, which (with some exceptions) forbids the government from forcing a woman to bear a child she does not want to carry, also prohibits the government from enacting Chinese-style laws that would prohibit a woman from carrying, for example, second or third or fourth child to term.

The terms "Pro-Life" and "Pro-Choice" are meaningless. When asked very specific questions about abortion, some of my "Pro-Life" friends sound more "Pro-Choice" than some of my "Pro-Choice" friends, and vice versa. I have NEVER met anyone who wants All Abortions Legal, or All Abortions Illegal. EVERYONE I know has views somewhere "in the middle", but very different from one another. In my opinion, the best question to ask in an "abortion poll" is: Who Do You Believe Should Decide Whether Or Not A Woman May Have An Abortion-----Voters, Politicians, Judges, Clergy, or The Woman Herself? I think 75% or more Americans would always choose "The Woman Herself".

Funny how the prog libs like to quote the OT when they think it supports their argument, but likes to ignore it when it does not. How do you spell "hypocrisy"?

"I've noticed that everybody that is for abortion has already been born." ~Ronald Reagan, quoted in New York Times, 22 September 1980

It was Marta to whom I was responding who said that "ambivalent" suggested that people didn't care. But, in any event, "ambivalent" also does NOT mean "lacking or indicating lack of confidence or assurance; "uncertain of his convictions." That is the dictionary definition of "unsure" or "uncertain."

And yeah, I think I'll go with the history of the progressive movement on social justice causes. Much of the history of foreign "missionaries" to the poor "natives" is not one about which the church should take any pride.

It is the so-called pro-lifers who want the government to control a pregnant woman's body who are closer to the slave-holders. A human zygote, who does not think, feel, or love, is not anything like a thinking, feeling, loving, human who was enslaved. Potentiality is not the same as existing.

And giving full "human being" status to a zygote would result in some truly mind-bending laws. If a pregnant woman drove negigently and had an accident that resulted in a miscarriage or a stillborn child, she would be, by definition, guilty of negligent homicide. If a zygote is a "human being" according to the law, then the government would be able to control what women of child-bearing age could eat and drink, whether, when and how often they could exercise or have sex, what jobs they could hold, because all women of child-bearing age might be carrying a nano-second-old zygote and any of these things could be thought by someone to endanger the zygote. The "mommy wars" would be child's play next to the power the government would have to dictate how pregnant women handled every aspect of their pregnancy.

Oh yes, and abortion would, without any further legislation, be a capital offense for both the woman and the doctor. But, evangelicals only want to make it a crime for the doctor (and even then not a capital crime). So much for really thinking it's murder.

Progressives aren't afraid of the Old Testament. It's the fundies who insist on the infallibility of their frail, human interpretations who are the hypocrits. Because we all know that the church has never gotten anything wrong before.

I've noticed that God's got the whole world in Her hands. I'm going to let Her sort out the whole abortion thing. You'd think if She had something direct to say about it, it would appear somewhere in the Bible. And, in fact, in the only direct laws in the Bible about harm to an unborn fetus, the fetus didn't count. Only the life of the woman required "life for life."

"Adj. 1. ambivalent - uncertain or unable to decide about what course to follow;"
http://www.thefreedictionary.com/ambivalent

"...the history of the progressive movement on social justice causes." Like I said you don't want to invite debate here. You will end up looking stupid. Contemporary prog libs ARE all talk and no action. So-called progressive liberal Christian from the 19th century would look at your theological beliefs - esp. your use of the third person pronoun "she" in referring to God - and would immediately pronounce you a pagan. Jesus commanded us to pray

"Pray, then, in this way:

‘Our Father who is in heaven..."

"I'm going to let Her sort out the whole abortion thing." Nicely said, CL.
Sounds so similar to the right wing fanatics of the '60's - '70's "Nuke 'em all [add the nationality you hate] and let God sort 'em out." Now we all understand who you are and what you're about.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kkPo6NvuHG8

"lacking or indicating lack of confidence or assurance; This is one synonym out of many of the term ambivalent and not the one I intended to post.

The article above explains the term in the first paragraph: "...the average American still holds conflicting views on abortion..." I asserted that should it come to their own abortion - Americans in general and evangelicals in particular - would not feel so conflicted. Even the most convinced pro-choicer (Tiller the killer comes to mind) would be absolutely prolife in contemplating his own potential abortion. I also assert that Americans in general and the above mentioned ambivalent evangelicals have bought into this world's view of life, which in fact is a culture of death. Killing your own children is macabre and heinous - which is what abortion is regardless of your reasons. But if , according to you, it isn't the killing of a human being, why not let Americans view it on hd TV in 3D? We've seen every other imaginable kind of violence. Let's see actual abortions at every phase of embryonic development. I wonder how many Americans - evangelical or not - would then be ambivalent?

But what God's word says is the most important consideration: Two verses come to mind:

Exodus 20:13 “You shall not murder." Abortion is the taking of a human life.

Matt. 7:12 “In everything, therefore, treat people the same way you want them to treat you, for this is the Law and the Prophets."

"Potentiality is not the same as existing." Zygotes are not potential human beings; they are human beings. And they are human beings who exist as zygotes.
---Dr. Landrum Shettles, sometimes called the "Father of in vitro fertilization" notes about life's beginnings: "Conception confers life and makes that life one of a kind."
---Dr. Albert Liley, the renowned physiologist known as the "Father of Fetology" has stated, "Biologically, at no stage of development can we subscribe to the view that the unborn child is a mere appendage of the mother. Genetically, the mother and baby are separate individuals from conception."

"A human zygote... [is] enslaved. Thank you for your clarification [startling admission!]. Now let's follow your reasoning to its logical conclusion - if the embryo is enslaved then an abortion must be the freeing of the enslaved embryo and so Roe v. Wade is the unborn's Emancipation Proclamation. Oh, this is rich!

But as usual, the word of God is a stinging rebuke to the prochoice sophistry. Pay attention:
Psalm 139
13 ...You formed my inward parts;
You wove me in my mother’s womb.
14 I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Wonderful are Your works,
And my soul knows it very well.
15 My frame was not hidden from You,
When I was made in secret,
And skillfully wrought in the depths of the earth;
16 Your eyes have seen my unformed substance;
And in Your book were all written
The days that were ordained for me,
When as yet there was not one of them.

17 How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God!
How vast is the sum of them!
18 If I should count them, they would outnumber the sand.

This single Psalm gives a comprehensive view of how God views the unborn. It is not prudent to ignore it.

"Much of the history of foreign "missionaries" to the poor "natives" is not one about which the church should take any pride." What a silly, uninformed comment. So let's imagine if there had been no western, evangelical missionaries to the "natives": the "natives" today would have virtually no health care, much less food, practically no training in modern agricultural methods, much less fresh water, not to mention - no Gospel, no salvation. On the whole, I think the "native" have gotten far more in the way of benefits from evangelical missions than what they have suffered.

CL, What you said about Margaret Sanger shows you have never read about her and as usual, try to speak with authority, but you have none. You can find pages and pages of the most racist quotes you've ever read if you do just a minimum of research. Sanger said specifically that she "wants to exterminate the Negro population". So you really want to claim that she wanted abortions for all women equally, and wasn't a racist? She specifically said it was for eugenics and for a race that should never have been born at all. I won't say all lawyers are like you because I do know a couple of honest, Christian lawyers, I'll try to be nice and think that you are just ignorant about her instead of blatently lying. You might want to look up some videos of her and Hitler together, both were for eugenics. Both strongly believed in Darwinism, and that the white race was superior to all other races.

Here are some quotes from Margaret. Her intent was not to help ALL women, she wanted to eliminate a race that she said should never have been born. You have lost all credibility and I won't be reading your posts from now on.

"We should hire three or four colored ministers, preferably with social-service backgrounds, and with engaging personalities. The most successful educational approach to the Negro is through a religious appeal.
We don't want the word to go out that we want to exterminate the Negro population, and the minister is the man who can straighten out that idea if it ever occurs to any of their more rebellious members."
-- Margaret Sanger's December 19, 1939 letter to Dr. Clarence Gamble, 255 Adams Street, Milton, Massachusetts. Original source: Sophia Smith Collection, Smith College, North Hampton, Massachusetts. Also described in
Linda Gordon's Woman's Body, Woman's Right: A Social History of Birth Control in America . New York: Grossman Publishers, 1976.

"Our failure to segregate morons who are increasing and multiplying ... demonstrates our foolhardy and extravagant sentimentalism ...[Philanthropists] encourage the healthier and more normal sections of the world to shoulder the burden of unthinking and indiscriminate fecundity of others; which brings with it, as I think the reader must agree, a dead weight of human waste. Instead of decreasing and aiming to eliminate the stocks that are most detrimental to the future of the race and the world,
it tends to render them to a menacing degree dominant ... We are paying for, and even submitting to, the dictates of an ever-increasing, unceasingly spawning class of human beings who never should have been born
at all."
-- Margaret Sanger. The Pivot of Civilization , 1922. Chapter on "The Cruelty of Charity," pages 116, 122, and 189. Swarthmore College Library edition.

"Today eugenics is suggested by the most diverse minds as the most adequate and thorough avenue to the solution of racial, political and social problems. "I think you must agree ... that the campaign for birth control is not
merely of eugenic value, but is practically identical with the final aims of eugenics ... Birth control propaganda is thus the entering wedge for the
eugenic educator. "As an advocate of birth control I wish ... to point out that the unbalance between the birth rate of the 'unfit' and the 'fit,' admittedly
the greatest present menace to civilization, can never be rectified by the inauguration of a cradle competition between these two classes. In this matter, the example of the inferior classes, the fertility of the feebleminded,
the mentally defective, the poverty-stricken classes, should not be held up for emulation. "On the contrary, the most urgent problem today is how to limit and discourage the over-fertility of the mentally and physically defective."
-- Margaret Sanger. "The Eugenic Value of Birth Control Propaganda."
Birth Control Review , October 1921, page 5.

"Give dysgenic groups [people with 'bad genes'] in our population their choice of segregation or [compulsory] sterilization."
-- Margaret Sanger, April 1932 Birth Control Review.

"The third group [of society] are those irresponsible and reckless ones having little regard for the consequences of their acts, or whose religious scruples prevent their exercising control over their numbers. Many of this group are diseased, feeble-minded, and are of the pauper
element dependent upon the normal and fit members of society for their support. There is no doubt in the minds of all thinking people that the procreation of this group should be stopped."
-- Margaret Sanger. Speech quoted in Birth Control: What It Is, How It Works, What It Will Do. The Proceedings of the First American Birth Control Conference . Held at the Hotel Plaza, New York City, November 11-
12, 1921. Published by the Birth Control Review , Gothic Press, pages 172 and 174.

"In passing, we should here recognize the difficulties presented by the idea of 'fit' and 'unfit.' Who is to decide this question? The grosser, the more obvious, the undeniably feeble-minded should, indeed, not only be
discouraged but prevented from propagating their kind. But among the writings of the representative Eugenists [sic], one cannot ignore the distinct middle-class bias that prevails."
-- Margaret Sanger, quoted in Charles Valenza. "Was Margaret Sanger a Racist?" Family Planning Perspectives , January-February 1985, page 44.

"[Slavs, Latin, and Hebrew immigrants are] human weeds ... a
deadweight of human waste ... [Blacks, soldiers, and Jews are a] menace to the race."
"Eugenic sterilization is an urgent need ... We must prevent
Multiplication of this bad stock."
-- Margaret Sanger, April 1933 Birth Control Review .

Thank you, Barbara, for your research: [Personally, I think the "C" in "CL" should stand for clueless.] And to think the prog libs invoke Sanger's name as their patron saint. Sad. But sadder still - the aboratoriums continue day in and day out killing little innocent defenceless babies. After reading Ps. 139 how can anyone - let alone evangelicals - think God doesn't care for these precious little ones disposed of as just so much medical waste. He knows when the sparrow falls; and He knows when another little one is butchered by its mother and an evil abortionist.

The commandment that Thou Shalt Not Murder does not prove that abortion is "murder" any more than a commandment that Thou Shalt Not Eat Meat proves that lettuce is "meat."

And "You knew me in my mother's womb" doesn't say anything decisive about "when" any more than "you knew me when I was a kid" proves that you knew me in kindergarten or in high school.

The technical term for this sort of "logic" is GIGO -- "garbage in, garbage out." Just like what happens when you can't tell the difference between a dictionary definition and a thesaurus entry. GIGO!

And Barbara, you and Dan can call me all the names you want but you are sadly mistaken. I HAVE done the research and you are, either wittingly or unwittingly, just regurgitating the lies of others.

PolitiFact, the Pulitzer-prize-winning non-partisan fact-checking organization founded by the St. Petersburg Times, just gave a "PANTS-ON FIRE" rating )as in "liar, liar") to a similar load of propaganda from Herman Cain about Margaret Sanger in which Cain claimed that Sanger's objective was genocide against black babies. http://www.politifact.com/georgia/statements/2011/apr/08/herman-cain/cain-claims-planned-parenthood-founded-planned-gen/

And, BTW, the Hitler pictures are photo-shopped. You can search and see the original picture of Sanger that was superimposed next to Hitler.

You should be ashamed of yourself for perpetuating false propaganda.

Some people sure get riled up when the truth comes out. CL, how do you plan on book burning the videos of Sanger standing with Hitler with the medals around her neck? Really, your research is very poor, and non-existent. The videos are not Photoshop lol. It actually happened in history. Sorry you can't burn all the videos too and kill everyone who may have been there, if they're still alive. You're like the moslims regarding the holocaust. "It never happened" Yeah, right.

Well, aren't we just an itsy bitsy touchy - typical response, I guess, when you can't adequately defend the wilfull killing of innocent children - 50,000,000 since 1972, 1.5 million per year, 4000 per day. I know it must be hard so you will understandably grasp at anything to deflect attention away from your anti-Biblical reasoning. Of course what goes around, comes around, as the saying goes.
[All this to say "Thank you," for your corrective comment. And since you were so kind in pointing out my error, I thought about pointing out one of your's - a spelling error -"If a pregnant woman drove negigently..." But I'm not that helpful. So I didn't.]

Regarding abortion as murder: Of course abortion normally isn't considered murder according to US law. But I didn't quote US law - obviously. I quoted the sixth commandment. Imo I think you would be hard pressed to prove biblically that abortion is anything other than the killing of an innocent person. Murder (rasah) in the 6th commandment "applies equally to both cases of premeditated murder and killings as a result of any other circumstances, what English Common Law has called, "Man slaughter." [TWOT] And although OT law is silent on the issue of abortion as we know it "...Jewish literature abundantly confirms Israel's widespread rejection of both exposure and induced abortion."
[Baker's Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology.]

Of course those who don't know the word of God probably have other opinions/convictions formed by secular culture.

And in contrast to your argument regarding Ps. 139, Bruce N. Fisk in BEDBT put it so elegantly I just had to quote him:
-"God's interest in prenatal development demonstrates his greatness and inscrutability
(139:13-16 ; cf. Eccl. 11:5 ). Not only is God involved in forming the unborn child ( 139:13-14 ), but God's knowledge of every detail of the child's form (v. 15) and lifespan (v. 16) knows no limits. ...the infinite God cares profoundly for human individuals, whenever, wherever, and however they may be found. Accordingly, when human formation is said first to occur in the womb (v. 13) and then in the depths of the earth (v. 15 cf. Gen 2:7 ), the crucial point that God's creative power is working from the earliest points is only strengthened. And when verse 16 pushes back to the very earliest, unformed stages of life (golem [,lOG], embryo, formless thing), and perhaps even earlier, it is to celebrate God's limitless foreknowledge and providential involvement with each individual. Even before God Acts to create, God knows and cares for his creatures." You may want to rethink your reasoning.

As for me, I think I'll take the word of the Biblical scholar here any day over that of any clueless liberal (CL).

Oh, and hey - didn't Barbara do a great job in her documenting of Margaret Sanger through her own words? Boy, that's some stuff the PP/prochoice people don't want us to know.

CL: You are missing that which is most important in this whole debate: the Bible says that people are formed in God's image, and so it is wrong to kill innocent babies at whatever stage of development. And tho Psalm 139 may not be a biological explanation of our fetal development, it surely is a theological explanation our importance to God proceeding from the unformed substance (golem=unformed substance) (and before!) all the way to birth and beyond. And you miss it - or perhaps not! Now your attempt to discredit God's word with your silly analogies only magnifies your lack of Biblical understanding. I must say your biblical/theological ignorance is profound. And this biblical/theological ignorance is all too obvious in your defence of the pagan practice of abortion. I see progressive liberals have come full circle: from the ancient paganistic practice of exposing/aborting their babies back to the current practice of aborting babies. Tho most Evangelicals seem to be ambivalent about others having abortions(they wouldn't be if they knew their Bibles), you apparently are not. You are obviously quite convinced it doesn't matter.
By the way, ever get a chance to thank your mom she didn't abort you?

Note: You said 88% of all abortions are performed in the first trimester - that comes to 44 million first trimester babies aborted since 1972. That still leaves about 6-7 million second/third trimester babies aborted since 1972. And you defend that. Remarkable!

"Killing your own children is macabre and heinous - which is what abortion is regardless of your reasons."

"And Barbara, you and Dan can call me all the names you want..." What?

This article, and perhaps the poll, did not do a good job of distinguishing between medical and elective abortions. With the early reference to Roe v. Wade, I assumed the subject was elective abortion which was made legal by that decision. Much later in the piece, it says, “A majority of Americans said women should be allowed to have an abortion if her health was endangered”. This type of abortion was legal before Roe v. Wade and I don’t recall any controversy about it. It would probably be accurate to say that Americans continue to think that medical abortions are morally acceptable and should be legal but are ambivalent about elective abortions.

@Barbara, I don’t think blacks are in any danger of genocide. I don’t feel like taking the time to look up current population statistic, but the last I knew, which has been a while, blacks made up way more than 12% of the live births. If I recall correctly, at that time the white birth rate was at, or just below, replacement; while the black birth rate was tripling the population each generation. It may have changed some since then, but not to the point of genocide.

@Dianne: African-Americans are about 12% (36,000,000 people) of the US population (total US pop. = 300,000,000 people), yet, "Thirty percent of abortions occur to non-Hispanic black women..." [1] Now, 1.5 million total babies are aborted each year = 4000/day. And if almost 1/3 of those babies aborted come from an ethnic group that comprises only 12% of the total population [One third of 1.5 million] then 450,000 African American babies are aborted each year. Well, then, Dianne, if this isn't genocide...what would you call it?

[1]http://www.guttmacher.org/pubs/fb_induced_abortion.html

The War Against Girls
Since the late 1970s, 163 million female babies have been aborted by parents seeking sons (in China)

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702303657404576361691165631366.html

How tragic!
Matthew 2:18
“ A VOICE WAS HEARD IN RAMAH, WEEPING AND GREAT MOURNING, RACHEL WEEPING FOR HER CHILDREN; AND SHE REFUSED TO BE COMFORTED, BECAUSE THEY WERE NO MORE.”