New study: Free birth control dramatically slashes the number of abortions

October 4, 2012 | By | 5 Replies More

All right, you so-called pro-lifers.  The facts are now squarely before you. A new study by Washington University in St. Louis indicates that freely available birth control slashes the number of abortions.  

A dramatic new study with implications for next month’s presidential election finds that offering women free birth control can reduce unplanned pregnancies — and send the abortion rate spiraling downward.

When more than 9,000 women ages 14 to 45 in the St. Louis area were given no-cost contraception for three years, abortion rates dropped from two-thirds to three-quarters lower than the national rate, according to a new report by Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis researchers.

These are dramatic numbers.  Therefore, we now have a tool for minimizing the incidence of abortion:  Make birth control freely available.  If conservatives were rational and if they really wanted to cut the number of abortions, they now have a relatively easy way to do it.  Mandate coverage of birth control by health insurers and otherwise make birth control easily available.  In fact, make birth control pills available over-the-counter.

But the thing is that this proven method of reducing the number of abortions will not satisfy many conservatives.   They will also want to stop women from having access to birth control.  They don’t like the idea of women having sex for pleasure only.

And, BTW, most conservatives are not pro-life–they oppose programs that help young children to be healthy and well-educated.  Rather, they are merely pro-birth.  

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Category: Reproductive Rights, Sex

About the Author ()

Erich Vieth is an attorney focusing on consumer law litigation and appellate practice. He is also a working musician and a writer, having founded Dangerous Intersection in 2006. Erich lives in the Shaw Neighborhood of St. Louis, Missouri, where he lives half-time with his two extraordinary daughters.

Comments (5)

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  1. The reaction to this from the Right will be instructive. I predict it won’t matter. This, combined with your post on the myths of women who “contracept” will merely underscore the point I’ve been making for years now, that the “prolife” movement is not about abortion but about sex. These are our own homegrown Taliban—TaliBaptists, as an acquaintance calls them—trying to put women “back in their place” and stop all this “farnikatin’.”

  2. neB says:

    A group of Lifers shows up every day now in front of the building where I work. They mostly just stand and hold signs but occasionally yell some stuff like “you don’t have to do it” etc.

    Of course I just work in the building, completely unrelated to the clinic which (I assume) is somewhere in the building. I generally try to avoid them (lifers).

    At first it was just one or two, but I guess as the election approaches they are trying to be more visible. They are even starting to bring children and some days there are about 8 or 10 people.

    They are sort of annoying, in that I see them every day, and I feel like I am spending more time thinking about the choice vs. life debate than I would like. (because I get reminded every time I see them).

    Basically just ranting here… but maybe Mark or others can offer suggestion on the best way to handle this — just ignore them or try to engage them? I entertained the idea of printing out this or similar article/study and passing it out to them.

  3. I\’ve never come up with a workable approach to a mind so made up. It\’s a purely emotional stance that is constantly reinforced within the group. This is what makes cults so dangerous, because part of their indoctrination is that anyone with a different opinion is automatically wrong or an enemy. You might try reading a couple of books on cults in general—Marc Gakanter\’s \”Cults\” from Oxford Press is excellent if you can find a copy. I tend to avoid confrontation anymore because I find we\’re simply speaking different languages. When I can\’t avoid it, I go for shock: I agree with them and claim it doesn\’t matter, that it is, to me, justifiable homicide. That sets their hair on fire.

    I have observed that when you get into the specifics of what to do with people who perform or have abortions in the case that it becomes illegal, most of them don\’t want to talk about punishment. They really don\’t want to go there. I think this is because basically, what they really want is for it to simply Go Away. If we enact punishments, it never will—it will be in the courts all the time and eventually they will lose the argument.

    Ignoring them is probably the best approach—the same way I ignore flat-earthers, astrologers, and most conspiracy theorists.

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