View from the choir

I am a Catholic layperson and Secular Franciscan with a sense of humor. After years in the back pew watching, I have moved into the choir. It's nice to see faces instead of the backs of heads. But I still maintain God has a sense of humor - and that we are created in God's image.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Another poll shows pro-life shift

A new Rasmussen poll is showing a shift towards the pro-life position in America - the fourth recent poll to show such results (joining Gallup, Pew and Fox News).

Released on May 5, the Rasmussen poll found that 58 percent of Americans say abortion is morally wrong most of the time. Just twenty-five percent disagree. The rest of those surveyed had no opinion.

According to the survey, women are more strongly pro-life than men. 64 percent of women believe most abortions are morally wrong, while only 51 percent of men did so (but still a majority).

In other words, a majority of women believe this supposed "right" is wrong.

Of those who identify themselves as pro-life, not surprisingly 88 percent say most abortions are morally wrong. Even on the pro-choice side, 29 percent say most are morally wrong!

In a second question 52 percent of those survey think it is too easy to get an abortion in America. Two years ago, 45 percent thought it was too easy.

Just 13 percent now say it’s too hard to get an abortion, while 21 percent believe the current availability is about right.

68 percent of Republicans and 52 percent of those not affiliated with either major party said abortion is too easy in this country. 37 percent of Democrats say it’s too easy, 17 percent too hard and 27 percent about right.

In a third question, the Rasmussen poll asked Americans about the recent decision by the Obama administration to allow 17-year-old girls to purchase the morning after pill without consulting with a doctor or getting parental permission.

Some 66 percent of Americans say 17 year-olds should be required to consult a physician before taking the pill while just 27 percent said no. Another 64 percent of Americans agreed such teenagers should consult a parent before taking the morning after pill while only 30 percent said no.

The majority of Americans support parental notification.

I've heard some folks suggest that electing a pro-abortion President - I say pro-abortion because of his extreme positions on abortion - may have helped to focus attention on the issue and got people to think about what they actually believe.

My sense is that a majority of Americans uneasily support limited access to abortion - first trimester, for the life and health of the mother (even though the courts have broadly and idiotically defined "health") - but also support limits and restrictions (not for sex selection, not on demand for any reason, not late term in most cases, not by certain methods, not with taxpayer money, with parental notification, with waiting periods, with full disclosure).

In other words, they do not support the Obama/Planned Parenthood/NARAL extremist positions.

These surveys help to confirm the more specific the questions, the more people know, the more pro-life Americans are.


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