Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Abortion Figures Shame This Country

Question: How many babies were born in the UK in 2006?
Answer: 635,679

Question: How many abortions were carried out in 2006?
Answer: 194,000 (up 4% since 2005)

This means that nearly one in three four babies conceived in this country is aborted. Let me repeat that. One in three four babies conceived in this country is aborted. This is a statistic which I found profoundly shocking and at first did not believe. What on earth does it say about our broken society that so many living beings are aborted? Surely even those who are pro-choice are also shocked at these statistics?

In an ideal world there would be no abortion, but we do not live in that world and never will. Those of us who adopt a pro-life attitude must recognise that we cannot roll back the clock and shouldn't try to. We have to be pragmatic, but that does not stop us trying to understand why the abortion rate in this country is so much higher than in most others, and then doing something about it. The question is, what.

UPDATE 2.52pm: As I expected, this has provoked a lot of comments, some insightful, others prejudiced. One describes what I have written as inflammatory. I'd like to know how. Some people don't seem to actually read what I write before venting their spleens. So let's be clear. All I was doing with this post is asking why we are in this situation and what we can do about it. Read what I actually said rather than what you think I said. I did not say we should ban abortion. I did not even say we should restrict abortion. All I said was that we need to examine why these figures are so high in comparison with other countries and I then questioned what we should do about it. What on earth is there to object to in that?!

UPDATE: It has been pointed out to me that there are 250,000 miscarriages a year. So if you add them to the babies born and babies aborted you get 1.1 million conceptions, so the actual ratio of babies aborted to babies conceived is nearer 1 in 5 or 1 in 6. I don't think that alters to fundamental point though. This ratio is far, far higher than in comparable countries and we ought to understanmd why that is.

162 comments:

Voyager said...

Yes Iain it is scandalous, and now set that abortion figure againt the number of people we import every year and see how in this most basic of human activities we even import our population to replace those we are terminating.

It is amazing to consider that the NHS pays for 80% abortions and that we spend a fortune on premature babies to keep them alive within the abortion time limit, but terminate far more viable babies.

There is something profoundly wrong in a society that functions this way, the numbers are simply too large which implies something seriously deficient in contraception or a policy which is being soundly abused. The numbers are simply too high.

Anonymous said...

One in four, Iain.

Anonymous said...

Iain is actually correct - 30%.
But let's not bother with splitting hairs - it's a lot of children.

Andy said...

Yes, scandalous - but no, it's not 1/3 nor is it 30%....635679 babies born PLUS 194000 abortions makes 829679 conceptions (excluding miscarriages). 194000/829679 = 23%, or 1 in four.

Ian said...

Less than 1 in 4, 23%.

Iain Dale said...

However you calculate these figures - 1 in 3 or 1 in 4, the point I am making stands. Now, what do we do about it?

machiavelli said...

If people weren't so feckless and irresponsible, we wouldn't need abortion. But unfortunately most of the population is feckless and irresponsible.

Of course abortion is not the ultimate solution to unwanted pregnancies, just as treatment isn't the ultimate solution to the explosion in STDs. The ultimate solution is surely to educate people so that they don't get themselves into the silly messes that they do get themselves into. The thing is, do we really want all these unwanted children born to parents who will resent them or leave them on hospital doorsteps to go to the orphanage in the meantime?

Anonymous said...

These figures are slightly skewed by the fact that abortion is illegal in Ireland in most circumstances and so many Irish women travel to the UK for abortions.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps we need to understand why the mothers decide to have an abortion.

I suspect the answer is that they cannot afford to have the kid.

If that is true, the number of abortions will reduce when use of contraceptives goes up and the cost of living, especially housing, comes down.

Andy said...

Would be interesting to know the age profile of the women who had these abortions....disproportionate nos of teenagers? - ?get over our angst over free contraception to schoolkids?.....or if there are many in their 20's and 30's and the cause is "lifestyle" - ?stick to the rules and therefore make it less easy?.... when I was at school we all had to attend a lecture on abortion by an obstetrician who brought in a bucket of aborted foetuses to show us. Caused uproar and upset at the time - and I'm not sure I'd promote it as a strategy, but there were no unwanted teenage pregnancies at that school - some might have decided abstinence was the best route, but I suspect most, like me, weren't put off sex itself (let's be reasonable, we were hormonal teenagers after all!) but we realised that there just had to be contraception.

Ed said...

Surely "most" abortions are a result of people not taking responsibility for their own actions i.e. not using contraception.

Not surprisingly, when there's a route for people to take which avoids taking responsibility then people take it!

Perhaps adoption is a more humane solution to unwanted babies?? It might also encourage people to be more careful.

Ed said...

many Irish women travel to the UK for abortions.

I doubt that makes much difference - the population of Ireland is tiny relative to the UK.

Anonymous said...

one in four iain - still scandalous

The Hitch said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
i spy strangers said...

Never mind the arithmetic, I'm sure we all understand Iain's point. I don't agree that there is "something seriously deficient in contraception". Effective methods exist and are readily understandable (except to the truly dim-witted or, perhaps, those too drunk to care).

Do the figures show the number of abortions carried out for women who are married (or in a stable relationship) compared with those for women who have no long-term partner?

Anonymous said...

Ed, I did say the figures were "slightly skewed"

AntiCitizenOne said...

Better an abortion than an unwanted child, or even worse an unaffordable child.

I think the main problem is that due to the policies of dysgenics we are seeing abortions by people who could afford to have children if the state extortion rate was lower.

Croydonian said...

Should not every child be a wanted child?

David Anthony said...

The right to choose will always remain. 1 in 4 babies being aborted is a shaming statistic, no doubt about it, regardless of your abortion beliefs.

Abortion was never legalised to act as a last chance contraception route. It was legalised to stop the small number of backstreet abortions being carried out. I can't beleive any of those brought it in would have believed that 194000 (1 in 4) abortions would be carried out every year.

The solution is not to ban abortion completely, this will never happen in a Modern Britain, nor should it in my opinion. Abortion has a place but it should not be the norm.

We need a change in culture to make it clear to people that abortion is only to be used as an absolute last chance. I don't know what the procedures are for carrying out an abortion; education, counselling, etc.

Like anything else, more education before the event can only be welcomed.

Dusanne said...

I’ve always wondered if there’s a quid pro quo that could be put on the table on this issue.

Why not get rid of the ridiculous ‘health/mental well being of the mother’ legal fiction from the statute books and just accept explicitly the reality of the right to choose? Making a clear statement on this perhaps would allow us to start to look at the other issues without any proposal being labelled as an assault on women’s rights.

As well as having a more rational debate on issues such as term limits, there could even be practical benefits in changing the tone and focus of the required medical consultations to one entirely of counselling and support rather than just a hoop to jump through.

A little more modesty on both sides of the debate would not go amiss either. The greatest of minds have pondered issues such as when life begins down the centuries and many of them decided on reflection not to nail their colours to the mast. Even the church at some points in history, and in certain circumstances seemed tacitly to accept there was no certainty that life began at conception.

The Amazing Toad said...

Anticitizenone said...

"Better an abortion than an unwanted child, or even worse an unaffordable child."

A brief look at the parliamentary Labour party, would seem to confirm the above statement as being a self evident truth.

The Hitch said...

maybe instead of aborting them maddona and angelina joli could adopt them all?

Anonymous said...

1. Teach people how to avoid unwanted pregnancies using the methods of the most successful countries.
2. Decide through a referendum the number of weeks after conception at which the foetus becomes a person.
3. Make abortion of such persons an offence.
4. Find out why adoption is unpopular and fix it.
5. Open enough children homes to give a good life to all those who are not adopted.

Voyager said...

I don't agree that there is "something seriously deficient in contraception". Effective methods exist and are readily understandable (except to the truly dim-witted or, perhaps, those too drunk to care).

You contradict yourself in one paragraph. Contraception is an action not a product.....

Chris said...

I'm pro-choice but also adamantly pro-life. I've always held the view that people ought to be able to ave an abortion if they wish, but if faced with the prospect of a partner needing one I would be dead against it.

Sex education in this country is still poor, and is taught far too late. When I was in 6th Form I volunteered in a peer education program where we taught 15 year olds about sex, and the usage of condoms (in addition to the lessons they would have received when they were 12). The issue is that so many more people are now having sex at a younger age, that teaching 15 year olds how to take proper precautions is too little too late.

It would also be interesting to see a breakdown of these figures into age groups.

The Amazing Toad said...

Hey Hitch,


Have "they" done for you?

"This blog is under review due to possible Blogger Terms of Service violations and is open to authors only"

Peter said...

Presumably those girls/women having these arbortions aren't as scandalised as the rest of you.
They want to have them, and aren't quite so squeamish about it as you guys.

I can't speak for them, but I must say I find this view that "Of course, abortion should be legal, but there should be fewer of them" to be completely unpersuasive.

What should the abortion/live birth ratio be exactly?

Anonymous said...

If you want to have fewer abortions, the best way to go about it will be to cut the number of unwanted pregnancies. Proper sex education and improved access to contraception would be a good start.

Anonymous said...

Girls in this country have been brainwashed by the left to act like Lenina in Brave New World by the liberal media. What else do you expect?

Tristan said...

1) Is there a source for this?
2) What constitutes an abortion? Does the morning after pill? Does the normal pill? Are these figures extrapolated from the numbers of women on the pill who would have got pregnant?

As for a solution - how about demand that all abortions are done in the least disruptive manner to the child to maximise chances of survival (as technology progresses then more children will be viable at earlier stages of abortion) and then the pro-lifers can put their money where their mouth is and adopt the children.

Personally I'd prefer an early stage abortion to a child having to grow up unwanted, possibly in care.

Ed said...

Another way of looking at this is to compare the number of acts of intercourse between men and women (to make it sound romantic) with the abortion rate. I suspect that the proportion of sex that results in unwanted pregnancy is tiny.

The figures actually show that although there are a lot of "irresponsible" couples out there, there are also surprisingly few who are choosing to have children!

dj frame said...

"Better an abortion than an unwanted child, or even worse an unaffordable child."
What a terrible statement.
Abortion seems the easy way out for a society that does not appreciate human life and does not want to deal with solutions which might demand a sacrifice from us.
I' can't believe some have had the pettiness to argue over 1 in 3 or 1 in 4, either figure is truly terrible. I agree with others, there is obviously something sinister obout our society.

ordinary housewife said...

It seems totally illogical to me to spend thousands in fertility treatment in one part of a hospital and thousands in another aborting perfectly healthy babies at an age when they could very well be born and survive.

If abortion was for medical reasons only then perhaps people would take more responsibility for their action?

Children are seen as a 'right' or a commodity not as human beings.

Like all actions sex has consequences - if you enjoy the action but not the consequence then make very sure that there aren't any because this is people's lives that are affected.

Unfortunately all the time that bed hopping is seen as the right way of living, unwanted pregnancies will be the result.

I know that many of you will disagree and in no way would I wish to go back to the time when pregnant women were disowned -but women do need to understand that drunken one night stands often lead to pregnancy, that having a baby does not cement a relationship. As Pay Ayres once said -when she was young her mother always told her 'men were after one thing, but never told her what that thing was. Nowadays women know only too well so there is not an excuse for pregnancy but they do not seem to realise the difference in male/female reactions in sex.

It also needs highlighting how destructive in later life an abortion can be. It might be a shortime answer but often rebounds.

Most of us enjoy sex and I am not advocating marriage but responsibility perhaps showing an aborted baby in schools might make some think? (They seem to show all else)

Colin said...

Without wanting to be too fundamentalist about this, it comes down to our changing view of why we have sex with each other. Now it is regarded as a recreational activity, to be infdulged in frequently and without much forethought, there are bound to be many more unintended conceptions, which then pose the problem - what next, birth or abortion?

If we could get back to the viewpoint that the fundamental purpose of sexual intercourse is the creation of new life as the ultimate expression of human love rather than cheap physical thrills between two consenting adults then we might be getting somewhere.

Iain is right - the numbers are shocking. But it is easy to take the moral high ground - and surely beter to have foetuses aborted at an early stage than 200,000 unwanted children each year. At least women now have the option of what to do for the best.

cecil said...

ed is quite right to say that the number of Irish women travelling to Britain for abortions is sufficiently small so as not to distort the figures, but the incremental increase in the number of abortions can, in some part, be put down to the number of polish women - whose government now has one of the most restrictive abortion laws in Europe, where it is outlawed except on medical grounds and cases of rape – coming to the uk for the same purpose.

The Hitch said...

The Hitch is just waiting for yet another sanctimonious post from JHL.
The man who extended the limit for abortion to 729 months

Toad, Nope
I did for myself , But have risen from the grave due to popular demand(=;

Palmerston said...

It's not 1/3, 30% or even 1/4.

Babies aren't aborted. Foetuses are aborted.

DANGER said...

This sounds like very good news to me. People will always make mistakes -- thanks to abortion, there are 194,000 fewer unwanted children in the UK every year. Great!

Hughes Views said...

Beware of big numbers - there are probably at least 15m women of child bearing age in the UK so this dreadful figure represents less than 2% of them. But it's still way too high. Part of an answer (there isn't a 'the answer' - the question is far too complex) must be to improve education and the availability of contraception. Trouble is a vocal minority of (probably mostly well-meaning) people will throw up their hands in horror at such an idea. If only they could see beyond the constraints of the way they live their own lives; limited imagination, that's often a problem with dogmatists...

Observer said...

If you want to have fewer abortions, the best way to go about it will be to cut the number of unwanted pregnancies.

Now that reflects a very confused mind. Since abortion can take place up to 24 weeks how does one undo a pregnancy at 12 weeks or 16 weeks ?

It is not "unwanted" pregnancy which is mealy-mouthed evasion - it is all pregnancies. Perhaps girls under 16 should never get pregnant ?

Maybe girls who are in insecure relationships should not get pregnant ?

Maybe we should correlate pregnancy rates with chlamydia, gonorrhea, HPV, and other STIs since they won't get any of these without sexual contact.

Women <25 have huge levels of STIs......probably best to stay away from them altogether. They seem to be especially dim and if you look at towns like Doncaster or Mansfield on a Friday night you can see why there are high levels.

Problem is very few people get taught about STIs and the wonderful pictures....

http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/dc-ma/sti-its/index_e.html

http://www.wellesley.edu/Activities/homepage/she/STI/sti.html


BTW...the BBC says the figures Iain quoted exclude Ireland......including Ireland puts the figures >200.000

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/6765953.stm

mitch said...

I have a niece who after the full nulab education experience belives that going to the toilet after sex prevents pregnancy.There realy is no excuse these days for unwanted pregnancy except stupidity.

The Surly Beaver said...

I think there are four actions that should be taken. First off I don't think that abortions should be provided at taxpayer cost by the NHS. I would make an exception if it is a case where the mother will die or suffer severe medical consequences should she carry the child to term.

Secondly we should encourage mothers who don't want to raise the child to adopt. I recall reading that part of the reason child protection officers appear to be removing babies from homes on rather spurious grounds and adopting them out is because they have adoption targets to meet. This suggests that there is a demand for adoption. Perhaps instead of paying for terminations through the NHS we should pay mothers to offer the baby up for adoption.

I think the bill/motion that recently failed in parliamentr requiring counselling and a cooling off period before an abortion takes place was a sound idea. Many women who have abortions do so with no idea about what it entails.

Lastly, we should have a referendum on abortion as suggested by another poster. Give people a choice of how late pregnancies should be terminated or in what circumstances. I know that in North America (both the US and Canada) lots of people say they are in favour of abortion, but when queried further they often mean only in cases of rape/incest/life of the mother at stake. Giving the public the chance to debate and vote on it would probably see the law tightened up to some degree.

Caroline Hunt said...

Iain I think it's very unlike you to say "yeah fine 1 in 3 or 1 in 4 - doesn't matter". It does and I am very surprised you haven't corrected the glaring factual error in your post. You wouldn't stand for that sort of sloppy writing from someone else. It's that sort of over manipulation of the facts that gives you pro-lifers a bad name.

Anonymous said...

Iain - you are way out.

You have omitted the number of miscarriages from your figure of conceptions.

Experts disagree but the most common number you will see is that a third of conceptions result in miscarriage ... meaning that your conception figure is understated by something like 50%.

This may seem trivial, but not to those of us who had to live through the hope and then the agony.

troymolloy said...

The figures obviously don't differentiate between abortion 'on a whim' (so to speak) and necessary 'assisted miscarriage', not that I'm suggesting the latter kind makes up a significant proportion of terminations. But they also don't distinguish between, say termination at 4wks and 24wks; and are such things as 'morning-after pills' included as abortions? I hope so, otherwise I too fail to understand how nearly a quarter of pregnancies can be so unplanned; or are people really that stupid?

Let's at least be honest though Iain, it's an anti-abortion stance you are voicing, rather than 'pro-life'. One can be both pro-abortion and pro-life - and one can be both anti-abortion and anti-life; the two are not the same thing and to imply otherwise (even if unintentionally) panders to the opinions of the type of violent extremists one finds in parts of the USA.

judith said...

Verity, where are you when we women need you?

1. Contraception can fail.
2. It's the woman's body, it's her decision - I know this is an unpopular view, but I won't budge on this.
3. I've had an abortion, it isn't fun, and I doubt many women entertain the procedure lightly. But good for them, taking on the responsibility of not bringing an unwanted child into the world.
4. Have sex only for procreational reasons? Yeah, as if.

Devil's Kitchen said...

This means that nearly one in three babies conceived in this country is aborted.

Let's stop with the emotive language, shall we? I could just about deal with "potential babies" and I could also deal with "fertilised eggs" and also with "foetus" but they are not "babies", OK?

What do we do about it? Well, we could stop being so coy about our sex education. Stop listening to the Daily Mail, etc.

As I have related before, a friend of mine is a primary school (up to 11 years old) teacher in Scotland. She has to teach the children about sex and about VDs. However, she is not allowed to teach them about contraception: she has to direct them to their parents.

Let me re-iterate this point: a teacher has to teach children how they can get pregnant and get VDs, but she is not allowed to teach them about how to avoid these conditions.

So, better sex education, please. It works everywhere else (where they have far lower rates of conception despite, often, lower ages of consent).

DK

AntiCitizenOne said...

I'd prefer 9999 out of 10000 conceptions aborted rather than one unwanted or one child the parents couldn't be responsible for.

No one is stopping those who disagree offering their own money and time to lower the rate to one they find more acceptable.

My only annoyance is that abortions are billed to taxpayers, rather than the person getting the benefit of the op.

dizzy said...

"What on earth does it say about our broken society that so many living beings are aborted?

Bit of a deep ontological one that isn't it? What is the nature being? And where does being begin? It's day like this I wish I still smoked!

Would now be a bad time to say that I still beleive that we'll find WMD, that Palestine doesn't exist, and that we should all have the right to bear arms?

Guthrum said...

It is truly appalling but we live in a nation that cannot organise itself to provide a roof over the heads of its young people that are in gainful employment, so less of the feckless youth comments please. Radio Four cited this morning a couple living in Totnes who would need eleven times the average salary to buy a home, and are now proposing to give up their rented flat and move in with parents to save for a deposit. Council houses have been flogged off, and our building starts are so low they cannot accomodate our existing population let alone migrants to this country. If the young people of this country cannot form homes without being bonded labour how the hell do you expect them to bring children into this world and sustain them expected or unexpected without entering into penury.
You cannot look at this malaise in isolation, free the housing market, let it function, instead of the failed artificial constraints of the planning system. However that is not going to happen is it because the tut tutters about abortion are not facing this crisis at all.

Desperate Dan said...

Educated young English women are obliged to work to provide homes, heating, lighting, benefits, prisons, education and health for lazy illiterate immigrants and the underserving poor. They're not even allowed to have their own hobbies and interests like their mothers did. They're only allowed to watch football, that's all. They're sneered at if they sew or knit or cook or do flower arranging or learn to dance or do any of the one hundred and one things women have always enjoyed doing . They're allowed to go to the gym to ensure they keep in shape. They have to have plastic surgery and constant facials in case their looks don't come up to scratch in the workplace.
Sex, that in the 60s used to be about pleasure, is now a brutal exchange in which women give and men take.
These women aren't cared for. They've become drones. They've got no time for babies. And the wierd thing is that they're proud of it and think its progress.

Pompous Pete said...

If we say that is nearly two million in a decade - how would the education and health system cope if abortion were not an option? And housing needs a decade after that?

Say what you like as to how they got pregnant, these women should be supported for taking the difficult decision to terminate.

Frankly, there are many more women who would have been better advised to terminate than go full term and produce a child neither they nor the system can adequately nurture, educate and support.

Anna said...

Don't forget that 1 in 3 pregnancies ends in spontaneous abortion commonly called miscarriage. So there are many more wanted pregnancies than pregnancies resulting in live births.

dizzy said...

DK said: "So, better sex education, please. It works everywhere else (where they have far lower rates of conception despite, often, lower ages of consent)."

Everywhere else mostly being Catholic countries.

Alan Dean said...

Iain,

I am normally quite interested in what you have to say on your blog (regardless of if I agree or disagree). I enjoy participating on 18doughtystreet. Heck! I've even bought some of your books. But I find this post deeply unpalatable.

Let me say that this is exactly the kind of stance that makes it hard for voters like myself to put a tick alongside the conservative candidate.

At the last general election, the stomach-churning stance towards immigration made me vote LibDem despite agreeing with Conservative economic policy.

If I sense a hint that anyone in the shadow cabinet agrees with your position on abortion, I shall run for the hills once more.

I suppose that by taking the label pro-life, that makes me anti-life in some way? Arrant nonsense. You may be anti-abortion; that does not grant you the title 'pro-life'.

For such an inflammatory post, I am saddened that you have not provided the source for your quoted data. Furthermore, I sense no attempt to analyze the data. For example, is the high ratio of abortions to births a function of a high abortion rate per capita, or of a low birth rate? Even if you are anti-abortion, the results of that analysis are more pertinent to policy than an emotive headline.

Let me be clear - you are free to hold whatever opinion on the subject that you wish. I am simply making it equally clear that moralistic posturing like this drives voters away. Do we really want to have the same kind of political atmosphere around this subject that they do in the States? I hope not.

Little Black Sambo said...

If the people who have to carry out the abortions become less willing to do it there might be a change of official policy.
Sex education has not so far been much help: there is more and more of it (and often of a brutalizing nature) and more and more premarital sex & abortions.
Societies with a low rate of abortion perhaps have stronger family life? That is true of Holland.
Did you listen to "The Moral Maze" last week? Two of the professional medical witnessess thought the unborn "person-to-be" was of no more value than a tumour.

Anonymous said...

Additionally, the 635,679 figure that you cite, Iain, for the number of births in the UK is actually just for England (search for "births" in the BBC News website).

Add in the number of births for Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, and it does bring the proportion down.

That stated, I agree with the thrust of Iain's post. It is still a very high number of lives.

The Hitch said...

desperate dan this is the result of a deliberate policy to destroy the western middle class and enslave us all. The elite behind this plan dont care how many babies the muzzies etc pump out as they are already under the cosh.
The EU and NAFTA are all part of the same plan.

Kris said...

On closer examination of the figures, you will find that many of our immigrant friends from "new europe" disproportionately contribute to the figures.

Anonymous said...

Frankly, there are many more women who would have been better advised to terminate than go full term and produce a child neither they nor the system can adequately nurture, educate and support.

June 19, 2007 1:40 PM


That is being especially critical of your mother

Anonymous said...

I'd prefer 9999 out of 10000 conceptions aborted rather than one unwanted or one child the parents couldn't be responsible for.

Then sterilise every woman who has an abortion

Anonymous said...

lol at Iain's maths

Justin Hinchcliffe said...

I have blogged about it, Iain. Check out my suggestions.

Anonymous said...

2) What constitutes an abortion? Does the morning after pill?

If you don't understand what Abortion is perhaps you should do some research before posting ?

Try Google RU486

glass house said...

LBS - "If the people who have to carry out the abortions become less willing to do it there might be a change of official policy."

How is that different from that Muslim police officer not wanting to guard the Israeli embassy a few months back.

If you sign up to do a job, you do the job - not the bits you want to do.

Anonymous said...

Shocked at free choice?

vervet said...

mitch said...

"There realy (sic) is no excuse these days for unwanted pregnancy except stupidity."

I agree with this mitch but, IMHO, there are also 2 other key reasons - catholicism and alcohol (and/or drugs).

The first brainwashes children to believe that contraception is a sin - the second deprives us all of rational judgment (and, by the way, I am not teetotal - I just acknowledge the debilitating effects).

Many commentors justifiably identify the need for a higher standard of (sex) education - but however effective it is, it will always be negated by an imprint of sinful behaviour or by mind-altering substances.

Whilst the catholic church brainwashes young minds and whilst we tolerate a binge-drinking culture, we will have an unreasonably high rate of abortion.

Simple really.

AntiCitizenOne said...

/ Then sterilise every woman who has an abortion

No thanks. Why not just let them have another abortion? It's much more moral than forced surgery on a person.

Anonymous said...

iain says: however you calculate the figures...ie rightly or wrongly, like iain?

Iain Dale said...

Alan Dean, I do wonder if you actually read what I wrote before you commented. Let me answer your points...

"Let me say that this is exactly the kind of stance that makes it hard for voters like myself to put a tick alongside the conservative candidate."

What is stomach churning about my post? That I point out that abortions have reached a record level and we should be asking why that is?

"If I sense a hint that anyone in the shadow cabinet agrees with your position on abortion, I shall run for the hills once more."

No, you THINK you know what my stance is without actually understanding it. I said in my post: "Those of us who adopt a pro-life attitude must recognise that we cannot roll back the clock and shouldn't try to. We have to be pragmatic."

You say: "I suppose that by taking the label pro-life, that makes me anti-life in some way? Arrant nonsense." It makes pro abortion. It's not me that is getting hysterical here...

You say: "You may be anti-abortion; that does not grant you the title 'pro-life'." I am using labels which are in common useage. I am pro life - I don't know whay you should get so upset about that.

You say: "For such an inflammatory post, I am saddened that you have not provided the source for your quoted data."

There was nothing infammatory about the post at all. It used mild language and asked a question about thwat we should do about this appalling statistic. These figures have been on the news all day.

You say: "Furthermore, I sense no attempt to analyze the data. For example, is the high ratio of abortions to births a function of a high abortion rate per capita, or of a low birth rate? Even if you are anti-abortion, the results of that analysis are more pertinent to policy than an emotive headline."

Try comparing our abortion rate with comparable countries you will see that we have a much higher rate than other countries. The bare figures speak for themselves. 1 in 4 conceptions result in a termination. Isn't that stark enough?!!!

You say: "Let me be clear - you are free to hold whatever opinion on the subject that you wish. I am simply making it equally clear that moralistic posturing like this drives voters away."

Absolute rubbish. I say what I believe. Isn't that what people want? I could be mealy mouthed and pretend to hold a different position. Then you really would be entitled to slag me off. I have made clear I am not holding a dogmatic position here - we have to be pragmatic on this issue and not pretend we can go back to the days when all abortions were illegal. That doesn't stop me questioning why the abortion rate in this country is so much higher than in others. Stop trying to close down a perfectly legitimate debate.

You say: "Do we really want to have the same kind of political atmosphere around this subject that they do in the States? I hope not."

No we do not, but that doesn'tmean that we can't hold a perfectly reasonable and calm debate on the subject, particularly on term limits. This is not a party political issue and nor should it ever be. I do not want a political party to have a firm policy on what I regard as an issue of conscience. As such an issue I feel I am perfectly entitled to give my view on it in a calm and reasonable manner without being described as being 'inflammatory'. You seem to think that by even raising the issue it is inlammatory. It is not.

mutleythedog said...

Quite honestly a lot of this is rubbish isn't it? All this stuff about STIs and STDs and what not- the evils of promiscuity etc etc. A lot of people round here don't seem to like sex much - which is odd. Most people I know are quite pro.. and don't seem to catch gonorrhoea or syphilis or whatever...besides the figures on the post don't add up to 1 in 3 at all...its all a silly moral panic about nothing.

hatfield girl said...

Ideally whether or not to carry a conception to term is the choice of the mother, not others; sadly others will force their opinion at every moral, social and economic level. But it's still none of their business, even if they get their way.

Chris Paul said...

As anonymous says one in four. And it is rather offensive and pre-emptive to be calling foetuses of a few weeks from conception "babies". There are thousands and thousands of miscarriages too which you have not accounted for ... many coming under the apparent "false alarm" category but many many more conceptions that naturally don't go to term. Unless some of these are included in your abortion tally?

Though brought up by a staunchly "pro-life" mother I am myself pro life in a contrary sense meaning "pro-choice" in the jargon.

It is bad enough having Ms Dorries pontificating about this matter - trying to tell other women how to manage their reproductive faculties - but what makes you think you're entitled to lecture on this?

Are the Cuddly Nu Tories, being progressive and all, coming under the thrall of the religious right?

And no machievelli it is not feckless and irresponsible - not in most cases - it is raped, it is contraceptive accidental, it is overtaken by circumstances, it is medical for baby or mother, it is psychiatric. Whatever it is it is not undertaken lightly by anyone.

Poor statistics with no source. And poor arguments. Superstition and propaganda.

1 in 3 is plain wrong arithmetic. 1 in 4 is lazy and wrong too. Get the correct figures. Then think things through. Or better stand on the shoulders of great women and men and research the thinking that has already been done on the subject. Infuriating.

Iain Dale said...

Chris Paul, one of your most ill-thought out posts, and for you that is saying something.

All I was doing with this post is asking why we are in this situation and what we can do about it. Read what I actually said rather than what you think I said because of your own prejudices. I did not say we should ban abortion. I did not even say we should restrict abortion. All I said was that we need to examine why these figures are so high in comparison with other countries. Surely even you can get your head round that one?

Anonymous said...

The trouble with us Brits is, we like shagging to much. 'Course RC priests are against abortions 'cos little boys don't get pregnant when you shag 'em

I'll save you the trouble Iain
This post has been removed by the author.

antifrank said...

I find this a really hard subject, as (I suspect) do most people. On the one hand, I cannot accept that the foetus has no rights, as the pro-choice lobby would wish to argue. It has the potential to become human, and we criminalise the murder of a one day old baby. I do not accept the principle put forward by Judith that "it's the woman's body, it's her decision". There are two to consider in this, both with claims on us.

On the other hand, it would be an act of profound cruelty to force mothers to give birth in many circumstances, and one of the least appealing aspects of pro-life campaigners is that they seem uninterested in what happens to the child after it is born.

What is needed is less a change in the law (though some tinkering might be necessary) and more a change in cultural perceptions. Abortion is not a substitute for contraception, and should not be used or offered as such.

Caroline Hunt said...

Well since Justin is shamelessly plugging his blog I'll mention I've blogged about it to. And Iain I've only called you a rabid pro-lifer because I feel anyone who describes themselves as a pro-lifer is pretty rabid about it.

Anonymous said...

We have created a selfish throwaway society where all that matters is what suits me; no self-respect let alone respect for the life of others.
The statistics are truly appalling.

This bulletin summarises information from the abortion notification forms returned to the Chief Medical Officers of England and Wales in respect of abortions carried out in England and Wales in 2006.

Key facts:=

In 2006, for women resident in England and Wales:

the total number of abortions was 193,700, compared with 186,400 in 2005, a rise of 3.9%
the age-standardised abortion rate was 18.3 per 1,000 resident women aged 15-44, compared with 17.8 in 2005
the abortion rate was highest at 35 per 1,000, for women age 19.
the under-16 abortion rate was 3.9 and the under-18 rate was 18.2 per 1,000 women, both higher than in 2005
87% of abortions were funded by the NHS; of these, just over half (55%) took place in the independent sector under NHS contract
89% of abortions were carried out at under 13 weeks gestation; 68% were at under 10 weeks
medical abortions accounted for 30% of the total compared with 24% in 2005
2,000 abortions (1%) were under ground E, risk that the child would be born handicapped

Non-residents:

in 2006 there were 7,400 abortions for non-residents carried out in hospitals and clinics in England and Wales (7,900 in 2005)

Stuart said...

Iain has been misrepresented by a lot of comments here. He may attach the tag of "pro-life" to himself, but in terms of what he calls for in policy terms, it seems he is no different from me, and I would call myself "pro-choice".

Whichever term one prefers and whatever your stance, the level of abortion that Iain points to is something that we cannot just shrug off.

It seems to me that our abortion debate is as mature as that in the United States. We seem unable to have a sensible discussion; instead we start name-calling and mud-slinging. What a sad set of comments this is (except the ones about Iain's poor maths; those are fair comment!).

Roy said...

I think I'm going to bookmark this post and comments as a permanent reminder why I could never vote Conservative.

Anonymous said...

Oh, go and watch 'Vera Drake' before you start pontificating about abortion. Problem is, regardless of what you've written, you associate with that evil harridan Nadine Dorries who wants to restrict women's right to choose. Abortion is safe, legal and isn't going away. Get used to it, and stop trying to restrict women's right to choose. You don't have any control over women's reproductive rights so stop acting as though you do.

Guidos Doppelgaenger said...

Poor statistics with no source. And poor arguments. Superstition and propaganda.

Chris Paul exercising self-criticism..........


In 1968, the first year after abortion was legalised, just over 22,000 terminations were carried out - in 2006 the figure in England and Wales exceeded 193,000 a year.

Just 1% are on the grounds that the child born would be seriously disabled and only 2% are because the pregnancy would affect existing children in a family.

almost half of all abortions are carried out on women in their 20s

Overall, 32% of women having an abortion will already have had at least one termination and nearly half will already be mothers.

Abortion Statistics, England and Wales: 2006

*
Document type:
Statistics
*
Author:
Department of Health
*
Published date:
19 June 2007
*
Publication format:
Electronic only
*
Product number:
Bulletin 2007/01

Key facts

In 2006, for women resident in England and Wales:

* the total number of abortions was 193,700, compared with 186,400 in 2005, a rise of 3.9%
* the age-standardised abortion rate was 18.3 per 1,000 resident women aged 15-44, compared with 17.8 in 2005
* the abortion rate was highest at 35 per 1,000, for women age 19.
* the under-16 abortion rate was 3.9 and the under-18 rate was 18.2 per 1,000 women, both higher than in 2005
* 87% of abortions were funded by the NHS; of these, just over half (55%) took place in the independent sector under NHS contract
* 89% of abortions were carried out at under 13 weeks gestation; 68% were at under 10 weeks
* medical abortions accounted for 30% of the total compared with 24% in 2005
* 2,000 abortions (1%) were under ground E, risk that the child would be born handicapped

Non-residents:

in 2006 there were 7,400 abortions for non-residents carried out in hospitals and clinics in England and Wales (7,900 in 2005)


Statistics


Chris Paul Poor statistics with no source. And poor arguments. Superstition and propaganda.


Department of Health Statistics 19 June 2007.......it is Chris Paul who is stupid, ignorant, ill-informed and pompously devoid of arguments wallowing in superstition.

Anonymous said...

You don't have any control over women's reproductive rights so stop acting as though you do.



Nor do women having abortions - nor do they pay for them - obviously they should, or buy a diaphragm

troymolloy said...

Anonymous:
2) What constitutes an abortion? Does the morning after pill?

If you don't understand what Abortion is perhaps you should do some research before posting ? Try Google RU486


Oh dear. Y'know, RU486, the 'abortion pill', should not be confused with the morning-after pill ('emergency contraception'). One aborts up to 40-odd days after the event, the other prevents fertilisation or implantation up to 3 days.

Perhaps you should consider some research before asking us all to plough through Google on false pretences?

Viv said...

We finally won the right to make decisions over our own bodies and on behalf of myself and two daughters I will never give that right up.
Of course birth control is preferable to abortion, but education sometimes fails - I expect Iain was taught maths for 18 years and he still can't do percentages. Now that is truly shaming.

Anonymous said...

Second abortion should lead to sterilisation to save NHS funds

Anonymous said...

Roy said...

I think I'm going to bookmark this post and comments as a permanent reminder why I could never vote Conservative.


I thought you were dead Woy ?

Roger Thornhill said...

Frankly the raw statistic is just a trigger to begin asking questions - it is pretty meaningless outside of that.

What age groups, marrital status, relationship status to father, socio-economics, education level, housing, ethnicity. Were any illnesses or dysfunctions detected (e.g. higher number of older women can mean higher number of abortions from detected abnormalities).

Until all the above and more is collected and seen in relation to each other and of those pregnancies that go to term (i.e. not in isolation) we could talk about it for ever and still be none the wiser.

mister scruff said...

i'm pro-choice , but even i am disgusted with the levels of these figures.

i'd give my right arm to adopt ANY of those aborted children.

having said that - read that book "freakonomics" - there's a strange correlation to Roe V Wade and the dramatically lower murder rates in the States right now...

Anonymous said...

For extensive tables including ethnic background, age groups, etc see
http://www.dh.gov.uk/en/Publicationsandstatistics/Publications/PublicationsStatistics/DH_075697

Real debate can only take place in the context of enemotional statistical facts.

Anonymous said...

Re: we ought to understanmd why that is

The high cost of housing ? Overcrowding ? The burden of taxation in part used to support the 4 out of 5 immigrants who don't make a net positive contribution to the economy ?

Anonymous said...

Ever since I was a teenager the call for more and better sex education has been made by authorities, "experts" etc. I am now 53. Not done a very good job have they? In fact, when you hear the usual suspects call for more education in every sphere of life, you know the problem will probably get worse rather than better.

Anonymous said...

Check this out:

http://www.bma.org.uk/ap.nsf/Content/Firsttrimesterabortion

The BMA will be debating a motion on liberalising the 1967 Abortion Act at their annual conference at the end of June.

The link is to their Medical Ethics Committee's view on it. Take a look. Even to someone who is pro-choice, it makes worrying reading. Should we really allow abortions to take place in unlicensed premises? Should surgical abortion operations really not need a doctor present?

Anonymous said...

That link by the way is

http://www.bma.org.uk/ap.nsf/Content/
Firsttrimesterabortion

Ed said...

Seeing as everyone else has plugged their blogs today, I would like to direct everyone to a blog which doesn't mention sex, drugs or rock n roll. Ok there are drugs.

The Hitch said...

Most English women are little better than common prostitutes, so who care what happens to the results of their filthly back alley couplings lubricated with Bacardi Breezers.

Geezer said...

At least there will be fewer single mothers, dependent on state handouts and fewer children brought up in disadvantged homes. I cannot help thinking it is a good thing, not good in the sense that they had unwanted pregnancies in the first place and that they weren't taking sensible precautions, but good in that the rest of us don't have to pay for their drunken carelessness for years to come.

That said, we need to know what the social make-up of these abortions is, is it more middle-class womone/girls getting pregnant or Chav choosing another career option apart from having illegitimate sprogs? I did read a while ago that middle-class women/girls were much more likely to have an abortion of an unwanted pregnancy than girls from more deprived backrounds.

If it the social make-up if girls, having unwanted prenancies is changing then these are a bad sign.

The Force said...

I love how this comes back to immigration. You people really do make me sick. Get back to you Daily Mail and stop spewing your hate all over the internet. Because....guess what?! There are foreigners on the internet too!

The Hitch said...

mr mutley
No wonder you are so pro casual sex
as we all know gonohrea (I cant be bothered spell checking)came about from French women having sex with dogs.
A scientific fact!!!!!!!!!!!!

The Druid said...

What would an acceptable level of abortion be then? Half the current number? How are we to decide?

It seems to me that in a free society abortion is a matter of individual conscience. There is no correct level. What matters is whether the decision is right for the individual. Any decision to terminate a pregnancy is best left to the individual (with their partner) and their doctors.

dizzy said...

Has anyone considered the possibility that we might have a wild dingo problem in the UK?

Sackerson said...

Iain, yours is a perfectly fair question, asked in a very restrained way. And what a picture of our country is revealed in some of these comments! I think you're too young to remember the first release of the film "If...", where part of the implicit justification for the shooting of half the public school's establishment by the young people was indignant revulsion at the discovery of a pickled foetus in a school jar. We, the audience, knew we were more sensitive, caring, morally superior. Now see where our Romantic arrogance has led us. But then look at what Rousseau did with his love-children; perhaps a bit of history would have taught us some humility.

Matthew Dear said...

We need to adopt intelligent pro-life policies which:

1) Support, rather than demonise single-mothers;
2) Encourage adoption as a first port of call for childless couples;
3) Encourage adoption as a first port of call for the unintentionally pregnant.

mister scruff said...

some interesting stats from the spreadsheet available on the Department of Health website

it puts to rest the oft preconceived notion that abortions are a problem with teenagers mostly. the stats dont bear that notion out. the vast bulk are in the 20 to 30 age bracket.


age range / no of abortions

15-19 40,244
20-24 55,340
25-29 40,396
30-34 28,153
35-39 20,074

Alan Dean said...

Iain,

Thank you for your response. I have tried to be careful and considered in return.

"I do wonder if you actually read what I wrote before you commented" - I did, quite a number of times. I kept on reading it out of astonishment! I wonder if that doesn't tell you something?

"What is stomach churning about my post?" - Strictly speaking, I referred to the 2005 policy on immigration as stomach-churning. I indicated that I found this post "deeply unpalatable". In any event, your question is correct in spirit as I did not set out why I have reacted negatively to your post.

The reasons for my negative reaction are various, but consider:
- The usage of labels that have not historically been employed in the UK when discussing the issue of abortion. 'Pro-life' has been deliberately chosen as terminology in the american political debate as newspeak to attack those who disagree (as, incidentally, has the term 'pro-choice' in the wake of Roe-v-Wade to denigrate the 'liberal left' in US politics who believe that women have rights). These have become divisive, propagandist, labels in the US and I worry that they are being imported.
- certain key phrases: "... broken society ..." (dealt with below), "Those of us who adopt a pro-life attitude must recognise that we cannot roll back the clock and shouldn't try to" rather implies that you wish that you could
- at no point do you discuss the putative mothers of the aborted embryos. Speaking personally, I felt that this lent an unbalanced tone.
- referring to "living beings" and "babies" (unless I am mistaken, the noun 'baby' is applied at birth, not conception) rather than the (admittedly dry-sounding) correct nouns of foetus or embryo.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pro_Life#beliefs

"That I point out that abortions have reached a record level and we should be asking why that is?" - You did rather more than say that, you also said "What on earth does it say about our broken society that so many living beings are aborted?". If that is not an emotive and (to me, at least) a deeply unpalatable statement - I don't know what is. It seems say that you have already decided that "society is broken" and therefore appears rather reactionary. It almost begs me to ask what you feel about divorce and if you think that John Major was right on the money with "back to basics".

"These figures have been on the news all day." - I am curious as to where. I watched both Sky News and BBC 24 Breakfast before leaving the house this morning, listened to Today on Radio 4 on the way to work, have visited http://news.bbc.co.uk and http://sky.com/news during the day without encountering the story. Bad timing perhaps? A link would be most useful :-)

"Try comparing our abortion rate with comparable countries you will see that we have a much higher rate than other countries. The bare figures speak for themselves. 1 in 4 conceptions result in a termination." - To start with, I would love to see the raw data you are referring to. I went googling and the most recent published comparisons I found were for up to 2005, but obviously if you have a link to more recent data that would be much better.

http://www.johnstonsarchive.net/policy/abortion/mapworldabrate.html
http://www.johnstonsarchive.net/policy/abortion/wrjp333pd.html

According to this source (I cannot vouch for its correctness) we do not have a "much higher rate than other countries". We certainly have higher rates than *some* countries - but lower than others (including the rest of the English-speaking world of US, Canada, Australia and NZ):

52.5% Russia (2005)
47.4% Estonia (2004)
42.0% Hungary (2004)
25.3% Sweden (2005)
23.9% United States (2003)
23.6% Canada (2003)
23.3% New Zealand (2005)
22.1% Australia (2004)
21.8% United Kingdom (2004)
21.5% France (2004)
21.4% Japan (2004)
19.7% Norway (2005)
19.0% Denmark (2005)
18.1% Italy (2003)
16.1% Finland (2004)
15.8% Spain (2004)
15.3% FR Germany (2002)
13.0% Netherlands (2004)
13.0% Switzerland (2004)
12.3% Israel (2004)
3.0% Austria (2000)

"Absolute rubbish ... [lots] ... Stop trying to close down a perfectly legitimate debate." - I was not trying to close down debate. I was simply trying to express my profound disagreement with your position cogently without being abusive. If I failed to do so, then I offer my apologies.

"... particularly on term limits." - Indeed so, but your post never mentioned term limits.

"This is not a party political issue and nor should it ever be. I do not want a political party to have a firm policy on what I regard as an issue of conscience. As such an issue I feel I am perfectly entitled to give my view on it in a calm and reasonable manner without being described as being 'inflammatory'." - You are correct, it is not a party political issue in the UK (although it largely is in the US) and, of course, you are perfectly entitled to express an opinion. How could it be otherwise? Perhaps I was unwise to use the words 'inflammatory' but I was being honest about how it struck me.

A, possibly tangential, factor to consider here is the impact that your opinions might have. You are clearly an ‘A-List’ blogger in the UK. You appear on both broadcast TV and on 18doughtystreet. To imagine that your words will not form a powerful impression in people’s minds would be naive, and I do not believe that you are. I genuinely believe that when you speak, you represent a caucus of opinion within the Conservative Party. I believe that your readers know this. I believe that you know this. It is perhaps unfortunate, but nonetheless very probably true, that your words have a party political impact. Let us not forget that the policy implications of abortion are widespread across both the economic and social agendas. Whilst it is true that abortion itself has never been a whipped vote, many policies affected by it *are* whipped (parental benefits being one, the effect of demography on immigration and pensions being others).

"You seem to think that by even raising the issue it is [sic] inlammatory. It is not." - I don't think that the simple act of raising it is inflammatory, but the tone can be (dealt with at length above).

My apologies for such a lengthy comment - I wanted to deal thoroughly with your feedback.

Regards, Alan Dean

wrinkled weasel said...

"ordinary housewife" summed it up for me...

"It seems totally illogical to me to spend thousands in fertility treatment in one part of a hospital and thousands in another aborting perfectly healthy babies at an age when they could very well be born and survive."

Well done Iain for being unpopularly pro-life. Life is precious. Murdering viable human beings for "life-style" reasons is murder.

mister scruff said...

hey, i'm as libertarian as , i dunno , Ron Paul. but i cant help wondering if abortion is just being given out willy nilly. i'm all for the right to choose - but only after all the other options have been discounted, and if there is enough support for the woman affected.

i say this because i'm looking at the stats and i cant help thinking about my delightful 10 year old niece. a product of a drunken mistake by my sister when she was in her teens.

my sister , to her credit, believed that it would be morally wrong to abort - and damn the consequences. ten years later i have an utterly delightful and well rounded niece.

but then again, we , as in my family, gave her LOTS of support and help. maybe that kind of family support is missing in a lot of cases, perhaps.

Ted Harvey said...

Iain I do commend you for being willing to again enter this fraught fray and to do so on the basis of 'can we be more rational and with less moralistic posturing (on both sides)?'

I'm pro-life and pro-life that says it's the woman's ultimate right to choose. But like you I'm very uncomfortable about the levels of abortion throughout the UK. It does represent some kind of failure because our present situation is satisfying no-one almost regardless of what stance they take. But it's almost impossible to have a rational debate on the matter.

For my tuppence-worth I think the abortion scenario is linked to other societal matters like more and more UK citizens drinking themselves to death, and commercial TV channels that now seem to be morally devoid zones of endless wall-to-wall gambling after late evening, honours sleeze etc., etc.

Could be that Cameron is on to something in saying its no longer 'the economy stupid' - 'its society' But there again the politicians themselves are major contributors to this moral void - granting themselves massive pensions, exempting their expences from Freedom of Information Act
(thankfully not in the Scottish Parliament where the FoI disclosures have had an amazing effect in closing down MSPs expences junkets). So where do we go from there?

mister scruff said...

"Regards, Alan Dean"

god help us if we ever reach Russian levels. they currently have a major demographic time bomb, with entire villages and towns becoming deserted and abandoned.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russia#Demographics

"The major reason for this decline is the high death rate, attributable mostly to widespread alcohol abuse.[45] Further, the population decline might accelerate in the coming years, and if current growth rates persist, Russia's population has been projected to fall by a quarter to a third by 2050."

their population is plummeting at an alarming rate - which in my view, has a direct correlation to the growth of Russian fascist nationalism in the face of much higher birth rates amongst non Russians. If we're not careful, we could ourselves end up in a similar nightmarish situation.

Iain is dead right to raise this issue. It does need to be on the political agenda.

Trumpeter Lanfried said...

It IS a moral question.

Effective contraception has never been easier and with the back up of the morning-after pill is essentially foolproof. So unless she has been actually been raped, or has a genuine medical emergency, every woman who has an abortion has behaved in a stupid and irresponsible way.

Women know this perfectly well. They blame themselves, and they are right to do so.

Why is the abortion rate so high? Two reasons: first, there are a great many stupid and irresponsible women in this country (not to mention the stupid and irresponsible men they have sex with) and secondly, our right-on "liberal" culture actively encourages recreational sex, recreational drinking and "every woman's right to choose."

Voyager said...

The link is to their Medical Ethics Committee's view on it.

Yes but that Committee does not represent UK doctors as many of its members are not doctors.....it is another body which represents a clique.....

Letter

http://www.cmf.org.uk/press_release/?id=62

Unless a pregnant woman's circumstances fulfil one of seven grounds set out by the Abortion Act 1967, induced abortion remains an illegal act in this country. 95% of abortions are performed on Ground C,[1] which exempts a doctor from prosecution for performing an abortion (before the 24th week) if:

'…continuance of the pregnancy would involve risk, greater than if the pregnancy were terminated, of injury to the physical or mental health of the pregnant woman… (account may be taken of the pregnant woman's actual or reasonably foreseeable environment…)'[2]

Since the inception of the Abortion Act, doctors have often made the assumption that the clause could be fulfilled for any woman who did not want to keep her pregnancy, because the emotional consequences of giving birth to an unwanted baby or the physical consequences of delivering a baby were greater than that of induced abortion.

Over forty years of the Act and after six million abortions, there is accumulating evidence of the serious and long-lasting consequences of abortion. Could 95% of UK abortions be illegal because of inaccurate assessment of the risks?

Anonymous said...

It's pretty awful really. The insidious thing is how euphemistically the whole topic is dressed up: "right to choose", "pro choice", etc. Nice wholesome language.

Anonymous said...

Yes, start talking about murdering babies or a massacre of the innocents and the whole weight of the liberal establishment falls on you.

David Lindsay said...

Everyone, and I mean absolutely everyone, should read Ann Farmer's Prophets and Priests: The Hidden Face of the Birth Control Movement (London: The Saint Austin Press, 2002; ISBN 1 901157 62 8). Ann is yet another of us homeless asylum-seekers from New Labour.

The war against fertility is, and has always been, the war against the working class, the war against the poor at home and abroad, the war against the electoral base of the Left, the war against the social provisions for which the Left exists, and, above all, the war against women.

Furthermore (this bit is Lindsay, not Farmer - but I'm sure that she would agree with it), the idea of fertility as a medicable condition, requiring powerful drugs or even surgical interventions to prevent a woman's body from doing exactly what it does naturally, is basicaly and ultimately the idea that femaleness itself is such a condition, a sort of XX Syndrome.

I can think of nothing that is actually more misogynistic than that, although some things are equally so, notably the view that the preborn child is simultaneously insentient and a part of the woman's body. Is it the whole of a woman's body that is insentient, or only the parts most directly connected with reproduction?

Anonymous said...

I always thought we had a right in this country not to fall pregnant. It's all down to personal choice I suppose, or perhaps there is still a waiting list of those seeking to be "educated" and therefore not responsible.

Paul Linford said...

My 2p worth? I think it's very brave of Iain to raise this issue on his blog, and completely and utterly f***ing ridiculous for anyone to accuse him of being in some way connected with the "religious right," although it is not the first time this ludicrous accusation has been made.

tapestry said...

brain teaser.

fun.
fun.
fun
worry
worry
worry

Lady Finchley said...

I used to think that abortion was something that no woman took lightly and indeed I have accompanied friends when they had abortions and they were forever devastated. However, nowadays, there is less and less reason to be 'caught out' as they used to quaintly say. Which is what leads me to believe that we have become a throw away society in every sense of the word. I believe in life from conception but I have no wish to deprive any other of woman of the choice to have an abortion. Nevertheless, I am saddened by the statistics which, allowing for freely available contraception that is available, should be much lower.

I simply do not buy that it is the fault of bad sex education - most kids are pretty damn savvy and if I, in the dark and distant late 1960's got myself sorted out with foolproof contraception at the age of 16 then, the girls today can. Excuses cut no ice with me.

Anonymous said...

Desperate Dan June 19th 1:40pm - we're not proud of it and don't think it's progress, well not all of us. Most of my friends have to work as one wage won't pay the mortgage. Please remember folks that not all abortions are to unmarried girls. In some families, married families where yes, sex is recreation and an expression of a loving union, contraception sometimes fails or an unforseen set of circumstances makes another pregnancy unwise. It could be that a medical condition is found or income lost or the marriage suddenly unstable on discovery of new information to one of those concerned. It could be that sex was forced and apologies and promises have been made. There are so many reasons. But whilst there may be too many mistakes made for comfort in this society, it is still a womans right to choose. And remember, she CANNOT get pregnant without a man rising to the occasion, even though she does not have to come to the table with any more than reluctance.

Darren G. Lilleker said...

I was awarded a Blogger that makes me think award and given the challenge of passing it on to five others. I thought immediately of you. Rules for passing it on are on the post: http://darrenlilleker.blogspot.com/2007/06/blogs-that-make-you-go-mmmmm.html

Cinnamon said...

If 2% of the women get pregnant, then this is a failure rate that is just slightly above normal for the pill or the UID, more in line with condom usage.

In the UK, much of women's health care is woeful and so it could well be that women avoid going to the 'well woman's clinics'. In Germany you go to see your Gynecologist for anything to do with your plumbing, you wouldn't dream of letting a nurse or a GP near you (e(ww)gads...!)

So, what I guess is happening that people avoid the NHS disservice and use condoms instead, this also being much healthier than using the pill, and not as painful to fit as a UID.

Another thing to consider is that women know they are stuffed if they get pregnant because a lot of men don't want to commit themselves and also, kids are hard work so people are thinking twice. To give you something to think about, in Germany, 60% of all graduate women are childfree. Some call those ladies selfish, others realise that for the most part they are scared stiff of single parenthood and subsequent associate family failures, because being a parent nowadays is way more complex and involved than it used to be. And so getting pregnant is less likely to result in a wedding than in recriminations and the CSA getting involved, and so, women often do 'the new decent thing'. It's not about morals, but really about what people find possible to achieve in their lives -- and it is always smarter to bait than to herd ;)

Chris Paul said...

You're right in a sense Iain - with update two - in some ways it hardly matters whether it is one in three or one in six (and there are more pregnancies to be added in yet and I haven't noticed your correction for the UK vs England figures). But where it does matter is in showing how little some commentators, unfortunately including yourself in this case, care about getting facts correct.

This flurry of news stories - in the MSM too - is about a 4% increase year on year in the number of embryos and foetuses aborted. So an error of 100% or more is hugely significant really.

And there are aspects of your post which are rather prejudicial and show a leaning to the so called "pro-life" cause. Calling these embryos and foetuses "babies" or in some of the comments "children" is at best scientifically and philosophically dubious and at worst deliberately prejudicial propaganda.

This little things. Correct numbers and careful language matter a great deal to those who have already considered these matters, come to a conclusion, or kept and open mind.

Anonymous said...

How many of those who condemn the women (largely girls) driven to abort foetuses or who make glib statements about how indicative our high abortion rate is of the social decline of our society have any experience of an unwanted pregnancy on a teenage girl - or of what leads teenage girls to become pregnant?

I had a child when I was 15. I didn't abort my son or put him up for adoption, I was fortunate to be able to keep him - and he's the now the father of two lovely children. However most of those pontificating about abortion here will have no idea of how hard our lives were for some years because I was so young and so poor and didn't have a clue about how to raise a child. So I can understand why a woman or a young girl might be driven to abort her child.

I didn't become pregnant because I feckless, or sex mad (I disliked sex at that age), or because I wanted a house of my own. I had sex with my boyfriend, who was 17, because I was convinced that, at that young age, we loved each other and, coming as I did from a highly dysfunctional family, his love was all it seemed to me I had.

Should I blame my parents for their dysfunctionality when they were the products of equally dysfunctional homes? Should I then blame my grandparents who also came from dysfunctional families...or should I project the blame back to the year dot? Because that's how far it goes.

I've researched my family history back three hundred years or more and, in generation after generation, this is what I found:

"The condition of the Essex labourer is as bad as it can be. He toils like a slave, lives like a pig and all too often dies like a dog, with nothing to look forward to than an occasional beer and old age of rheumatism and misery in the workhouse" (Essex Chronicle 1860)

I feel so angry when politicians like Cameron or Brown speak of creating perfection and loving families for all children. They're living in cloud cuckoo land!

It's taken the human race a thousand years or more to reach the low level of civilisation we have now and it will take another thousand, if our species survives that long, before we will achieve anything approaching real civilisation. Our species is still in its infancy.

I'm not suggesting that nulabour haven't caused considerable social decline, when I can see all around me that they have. Indeed, in many ways - their housing and health policies, their mass immigration policy and the overcrowding and social pressures resulting from it, their attack on our value system - nulabour are propelling the working class back towards 19th century living standards.

However, to pretend that any politician can either force or encourage those of our species living on these crowded islands into instant civilisation in the space of one, or several, electoral terms is practically insane.

Jim said...

How about a campaign to give the pre-aborted baby some pain killers.

We would treat a monkey better

Chris Paul said...

Just a global answer to the handbaggers:

1. Iain's piece does not source the statistics, some say his two totals are it seems not based on the same geographical area, he ignores miscarriages, and the arithmetic is appalling.

2. Others providing sources and detailed figures later does not get Iain off the hook for rushing into blog without getting the facts straight or giving links to sources.

3. Iain's rejoinder to my first comment is a knee jerk which accuses me of saying things I simply do not say, and hysterically of not reading what he wrote properly. He hasn't read the comment properly now has he?

4. I am in favour of a women's right to choose but although I think Iain's language does betray his prejudices and he is guilty of crass exaggeration I don't say he is an abolitionist.

5. His friend Nadine Dorries however is very close indeed to being one and admits being swayed by Christian Right charismatics to change her views on social policy issues. I find that worrying. Look where it has got the world whether Bush in thrall to the Christian right in USA or other fundies of all stripes in other regions.

I hope that some of you haven't gone and done something you'll regret in the morning.

Anonymous said...

In Dundee, over half of all conceptions end in abortion. Many women are on abortion number four or more

Jess The Dog said...

I used to be more "liberal" towards the abortion debate until I fathered a child. Now I cannot comprehend why someone would wish to have an abortion. There is simply no excuse, with the widespread availability of contraception.

Anonymous said...

In America there is a parallel between the legitimisation of abortion and the decline in crime 15-20 years later. So if the only children that come into the world are loved and cared for by willing parents they are less likely to become criminals.

javelin said...

Cheaper than durex.

dizzy said...

Is this still going? Has anyone threatened to blow up an abortion clinic? If not, I want my money back!

Go F*** yourself King Herod said...

This is truly a sick society that deems such figures appropriate.

Are all those who have abortions monsters ? No of course not.

But the ability to compartmentalise morality i.e. to be totally immoral in one act and totally civilised in another sphere is as old as history and humanity.

Concentration Commandants were often good fathers to their own children and slave traders could be perfectly loving to their nearest and dearest.

Therefore all those who support or propogate abortion, are to my mind the 21st century equivalent of sincere nazis and slave traders. Genuine in their beliefs and often personally charming and civilised but horrifically misguided in their views.

I believe history will judge this to be one of the greatest shames of our age.

Anonymous said...

Is there a reference for those Dundee figures please?

More than half?
Many on 4th abortion?

Please provide reference.

Chris Paul is right again. There is a completely cavalier attitude to figures and facts in this part of the Tory blogosphere.

Iain is too quick to stamp and sulk when he should be listening.

Chris Paul said...

Hi Dizzy!

Yes, it's still going. Netherlands is not a Catholic country with much better access to sex education, much better access to and training with contraception, much lower unplanned/unwanted pregnancy rate, and much lower level of abortions.
(About half? Someone will no doubt check. While I'm in Daleland I can't be arsed.)

In one local authority not far from me a clinic wanted to change their air conditioning and a press campaign against that was led by (a) a closet gay man with a racey lifestyle and (b) a serial philandering heterosexualist. Both Catholic, natch.

Very upstanding. But they didn't torch it or murder anyone. I think they may have been warned off by some wisewomen to be perfectly frank.

Best w

Chris P

Anonymous said...

Those of you who are snobbishly denigrating unmarried teenage girls who get pregnant need to look at YOUR ancestors on the censuses from 1841 to 1901 and the parish registers. You're in for a shock.

90% of you will find many of your own ancestors were born to unmarried teenagers and recorded as 'base born' or 'b*stard'. Almost every family history researcher finds these unmarried births, often a lot more recently too. Look into it further and you will find countless inexplicable deaths among the base born children of these girls.

A few of you, the very small proportion who had wealthy or aristocratic ancestors may be descended from the 'masters' who were very often the ones responsible for abusing these, largely servant, girls and getting them pregnant before turning them out onto the streets.

Pregnant girls turned out in this manner then had to walk to workhouse of their home parish, the only place that was allowed by law to accept them - sometimes they had to walk a hundred miles or more. Many starved to death or died of exposure on the way.

That's what happened to Oliver Twist's mother and perhaps to Dickens' mother.

Is it any surprise that generations of descendants of children who survived that sort of existance became dysfunctional parents themselves or that our society is scarred by that?

John Leonard said...

Iain,

Its very commendable that you have raised this issue. I have a slightly different and perhaps less emotive view of this matter.

I don't know if you saw the debate on the NHS on ITN's Sunday Programme last weekend.

One of the doctors mentioned, that real NHS policy should be treating the cause of conditions (e.g. Smoking, Obesity and Drinking). I agree with him.

Ironically, when giving examples he did not mention irresponsible sexual activity.

I suggest that irresponsible sexual activity and inadequate use of contraception is the real issue here.

There are good reasons why people might seek terminations in unusual circumstances that are no fault of their own.

To throw in another statistic, sexually transmitted diseases increased to over 790,000 in 2005. Between 1996 and 2005 the number of cases has increased by approximately 60% (excluding HIV/Aids). As people will probably agree STD's can have even more dreadful consequences, particularly for women.

I do not believe that it is coincidental that this has happened at a time when the Government's and society's attitude toward sex has relaxed to a point where it is virtually no longer an issue for discussion.

I am not going to start bible thumping at this point. However, whilst I have reasonably liberal attitude toward legal sexual behaviour, I do have a problem when society and government also seem to have a relaxed attitude to the difficulties occurring from irresponsible sexual activity.

Over the past couple of years we have had fairly graphic advertising campaigns from the Government warning against the consequences of smoking, speeding and drink driving.

However, when it comes to contraception the only adverts I have seen are the ones about the boys going to play football and the two girls sitting in a lounge.

The message given seemed to be:

'If you don't use contraception your mates won't think very highly of you and the girl will be upset afterwards'.

Frankly it is lame.

I admit I do not know how schools now provide their sex education but I suspect what is provided falls short of providing a realistic view of the less desirable implications that unprotected sex can have.

The statistics suggest this is the case.

It does not matter how available contraception is if people do not understand the real potential consequences.

Teenagers need to have it explained to them in stark terms (e.g. documentary films): what it is like to have a termination, what catching STDs can lead to, what it can be like to have the CSA after you, what it can be like to live in foster care, what it can be like to be a single parent and so forth

I appreciate this may seem a little harsh but if you want to improve and save people's lives then it may be the only way.

If this approach is taken I suspect that both the abortion rate and STD figures will fall.

I took a look on the web to see if the government had published any information and was unable to find anything close to what I am suggesting. It may be there but is wasn’t available on the first five search pages so I guess people would most likely give up looking.

I do find it ironic that these days you can get access to pretty much any sort of legal sexual material for little or no cost and yet there is equally so little official information on what the risks of irresponsible sexual behaviour are and how bad the issues can become.

Madasafish said...

At the end of the day, the problem is that people WANT abortions.
AND they put themselves in a situation where they NEED abortions.

So to reduce the number of abortions (short of banning them) you have a simple choice of actions:
1. Educate people not to need them (i.e. better contraception). Given the spread of STDs and the failure to reduce them this requires a MAJOR and well thought out initiative.
2. Change people's midsets so they don't want to abort babies irrespective of whether they can afford to keep one or not.
That is a MAJOR change in mindsets.

SO there you have it: change attitudes that have built up through lax/nil guidance over the past 40 years.

Given that some major politicians have an unenviable appalling personal record in living their own lives... (Back To Basics as exemplified by the last Conservative administration:-(... I think any such moves should be carefully thought through.

Given the fact we live in a society where we can't get the NHS to reduce MRSA/other infections in hospitals... I will not hold my breath.

Given that many members of the previous Conservative administration are still MPs if the Conservative Party goes down this route it will rightly be accused of hypocrisy.

But then I'm afraid that's what politicians are best at.

Oh and if you are going to cut down abortions (and I am in favour of reducing them.. despite the above), you might also consider banning ALL embryo research - unequivocally. The arguments are the same imo.

You should also ban all assisted suicides, and all mercy killing of patients in pain.

These are the only logical conclusions for path you step on.

Mark Valladares said...

Iain,

As others have said, you are suicidally brave to have taken this on. But, as a liberal and a Catholic, I find the issue a difficult one too.

In an ideal world, abortions would be rare, but we live in a far from flawless society. People make mistakes, get unlucky or their circumstances change. For those reasons, and many others, abortion is a necessary option. For many women facing an unexpected or unwanted pregnancy, it is far from being a desirable outcome.

So we need to continue to make abortion freely available, whilst doing everything in our power to provide women with as much information as possible so that they might avoid needing to take up the option.

In a free society, we need to balance choice with compassion and education. Only then will we see abortion rates reduce in this country.

Unfortunately, in issues of conscience such as this, the extremes of the debate tend to crowd out those who experience honest doubt, a majority of the population in all likelihood. And the comments here demonstrate that fact only too clearly...

DiscoveredJoys said...

Well done Ian for being brave enough to address a deeply divisive issue (even if his maths were a little iffy).

I think there is a high number of abortions because the men and women of today do not 'fear' the consequences of pregnancy as much as earlier generations.

Men can excuse themselves having unprotected sex because:
a) even if they don't use a condom, its her responsibility
b) even if she can identify him, there is little social pressure on him to do the right thing and marry her
c) she can always have an abortion
d) what you do while you are drunk doesn't count.

Women can excuse themselves having unprotected sex because:
a) even if they don't use a condom, she probably won't 'fall pregnant' (i.e. its an accident not a consequence)
b)even if she can identify him, there is little social pressure to do the right thing and marry him
c) she can always have an abortion
d) she can always be (rose tinted glasses) a 'single parent'

Plus all the time honoured reasons ("I thought he loved me", the condom failed, etc).

I don't think we should (or could) stop abortion for the good reasons (rape/health/impact on family) set out in the original Act.

Reducing the number of abortions by teaching people to be responsible for their actions would be a huge task, but it would benefit our society in so many other ways. Sooner we start, the better!

Anonymous said...

John Leonard said:

One of the doctors mentioned, that real NHS policy should be treating the cause of conditions (e.g. Smoking, Obesity and Drinking). I agree with him.


You've failed to mention the huge damage to our health and dwindling planetary resources caused by the petrol engine and flying. Sports do a fair amount of damage too. They're your poison are they?

Sorry to disillusion you, but smoking, drinking and obesity are not the sole cause of ill health. Cancer, for example, is very much a disease which is part and parcel of aging. And banning the pleasures you dislike will not make us super fit or immortal.

I suppose when you've shut us all into sterile boxes where we can't be human, take risks or hurt ourselves any longer, we could raise the c £8 billion tax lost by banning smoking by massively increasing duty on petrol and flights - and imposing a tax on sport? We'd also need to think about the huge drain on pensions as smokers don't tend to collect as much of these as non-smokers.

houndtang said...

These figures indicate just what a scummy country we live in. Is there any indicator of morality, decency or achievement that this country isn't bottom of in the developed world?

Johnny Norfolk said...

I cant beleive that people dont find these figures sickening. and when percentages in other countries are quoted as if we are comapring the coal output for each country is just disgraceful. As a nation we shouled be ahshamed by this when you think of the contraceptives available abortions should be going down.

Anonymous said...

Both the pros and the antis should be able to agree on these points:

- Today largely people think abortion is acceptable whereas 50 years ago they didn't.

- Today abortion is relatively easy to obtain whereas 50 years ago it wasn't.

- The only way you change the stats is to alter one or both of the above. As to whether this should be done, that depends on the view you take.

That should be non-controversial; now for my view - namely that abortion is wrong. The reason why many hold the opposite view is that the debate is generally skewed so that people are cast as pro-life or pro-choice.

I refuse this debate. The nature of abortion is self-evident when you google e.g. "pictures aborted babies". Once you see what is involved, you know the truth. As proof of this, pro-choice people never invoke such pictures in support of their view.

Norfolk Blogger said...

It was interesting to hear David Steel talk about this on Radio Five earlier. He introduced the Bill that allowed abortion in this country. he did so in order to stop back street abortionists and for the purposes of womens health,

But he too today said that people (women) were not taking responsibility for their actions and were using abortion as an alternative for of contracpetion, which was wrong in every way.

I am pro choice, but I agreed with the points he was maikng and the reservations he has.

James Ward said...

I don't find the statistic shocking, and I don't believe it says anything about the society in which we live.

If you accept that the current laws we have re abortion are ok then you can have no complaint about numbers: if you accept that abortion is ok, then how exactly does a large number of abortions change your view?

"I'm in favour of abortion, but only until there have been 250,000 in the UK in one year" is a ridiculous viewpoint.

On the other hand if you disagree with abortion in principle then numbers don't matter; one is too many.

If you accept that abortion is ok then abortion is ok and the number of abortions can, logically, have no impact on that thinking.

mike b said...

Dear Iain,
Hooray and thank you. Anyone like me who has doubts about how far abortion has gone is harried, can't express an opinion even, without being labelled, sexist, religist, old-fashioned, anti-contraception etc etc. WELL DONE
Mike B

The Remittance Man said...

I stand to be corrected here, but before the abortion act became law many people predicted that the number of abortions would rise dramatically. The public and parliament were assured by the bill's sponsors that this would not be the case and that sufficient safeguars would be put into place.

If I remember correctly David Steel was responsible for bringing the Private Members bill that became the 1967 Abortion Act to parliament. In the light of these figures, are we going to get a public apology from David and his colleagues for their gross stupidity if not downright mendacity?

Don't both answering that one.

Soddball said...

For all of you complaining about Iain being anti-abortion, well - it is called the 'Conservative' party. There's a reason for that. If it was called the 'Progressive' party and he was anti-abortion then I think you could have reason to complain.

Does anyone know what the figures are for the numbers of people from Catholic countries coming to the UK for terminations are? Do private clinics appear on the statistics?

Anonymous said...

Compulsory sterilization anyone? Possibly reversible upon proof of adequate funds and attending child upbringing course?

Anonymous said...

houndtang is right. We've become a nation of chavs and slags.

Vicola said...

"houndtang is right. We've become a nation of chavs and slags. " - anonymous

Have you ever perhaps thought that attitudes like this are part of the reason that abortion rates are so high? Why would you assume that because someone accidentally becomes pregnant they are a 'slag'. That's just plain childish. If there was more acceptence of unattached pregnant women, more sex education and more incentive to go through with a pregnancy then give an unwanted child up for adoption then we wouldn't be seeing these huge figures.

grumpyoldbookworm said...

If the passion that many of your readers have about this was directed at teaching young men to be responsible in sex, many unwanted pregnancies would not happen. It is too easy to blame women, but for each conception there was a man involved. All boys should be taught to use condoms properly as a basic life skill.

Anonymous said...

Vicola: "someone accidentally becomes pregnant"
Presumably after accidentally removing their clothes and accidentally opening their legs. Hmmmm - a good trick if you can do it!

The Surly Beaver said...

Jess The Dog said...
I used to be more "liberal" towards the abortion debate until I fathered a child. Now I cannot comprehend why someone would wish to have an abortion. There is simply no excuse, with the widespread availability of contraception.

Amen to that attitude. I've always been pro-life, but now that my wife and I are expecting it's driven the point home even more that abortion is wrong. Between the ultrasounds, and the kicking (in particular the kicking in response to my reading Beatrix Potter stories to the "foetus" or "potential human being").

Anyone who claims that it isn't a baby that is being killed is lying or engaged in torturous semantic exercise. As for choice. For the issue of choice - we exercise choice when we have sex with someone. Sex has all sorts of possible consequences including pregnancy. Abortion in most cases is simply making someone else (the baby) bear the consequences of your actions.

Little Black Sambo said...

"These little things. Correct numbers and careful language matter a great deal to those who have already considered these matters, come to a conclusion, or kept an open mind."
So the opinion of this person (can't remember who it was, but he writes like a lib dem) is much more important than those of the other riffraff commenting here.

bean said...

To all those who are pro-life/anti a woman's right to choose.

It's really very simple. Don't like abortion? Don't have one. No one will force one upon you. But don't dare to tell me that I don't have the right to decide whether or not to have one.

Anonymous said...

Dump "the hitch" he spoils this blog.

Lauren Stevens said...

Don't forget that the UK rate has now overtaken the US: http://www.bmj.com/cgi/content/full/331/7512/310-f

Also what is so wrong with adoption anyway? I don't believe for a moment that even 10,000 of those women couldn't have given birth and adopted their baby.

We should be removing the stigmatism around adoption to give women proper choice methinks.

Trumpeter Lanfried said...

If we are going to have sex education in schools, let's make sure it includes pictures of aborted foetuses. That might make some inroads into these appalling figures.

Joey said...

One way to reduce the number of abortions may be to make it illegal... just a thought...

http://www.AbortionNO.org

Fraser Nelson said...

IF anyone is interested in the figures, they are in an ONS Health Statistics Quarterly for Spring 2007. For the UK overall 22.3% of pregnancies end in “legal abortions” (there is, of course, no data for illegal ones). The 2004 data shows that, in inner London, it’s 33%. For under-16s it’s 57%. The data for under-14s is just too grim to repeat.

Link: http://www.statistics.gov.uk/downloads/theme_health/hsq33web.pdf

Anonymous said...

Well what do you expect? Surely it's inevitable that for under 14s, the percetnage of pregnancies ending in abortion is higher than in the population at large? Surely that is a good thing? Unless you think it desirable that 14 year olds who get pregnant go through with the pregnancy in all cases...

Anonymous said...

"Babies aren't aborted. Foetuses are aborted."

What a stupid comment. Foetus is the Latin word for "little one", which is what an unborn child is. Its a baby. Just look at an ultra sound picture.