A Gallup Poll last year indicated that more Americans self-identify as pro-life than pro-choice. The more interesting results, however, indicate that 40% of all those surveyed believe that abortion should only be legal in a “few circumstances”. I would be interested to see a breakdown of specific circumstances and see where those who hold this view would restrict abortion.
Those who favor the pro-choice stance should be alarmed by these results, however. In a society that is increasingly utilitarian as far as ethical values are concerned, it appears as though the pro-life stance is gaining steam (interestingly enough, the Gallup Poll linked above suggests this may be due to President Obama’s stance as a firm advocate of the “pro-choice” side). We live in a democratic society, and it is clear that for some reason, the minority rules when it comes to abortion. The tides are turning.
But the problem with an issue like abortion isn’t so much getting a majority when it comes to voting, it comes down to what is right and wrong. Again, a utilitarian society has trouble acknowledging this, but the bottom line is that abortion commits murder. It is the willful destruction of a human being. I’ve issued challenges before for any pro-choice advocate to provide some kind of logical argument for abortion which can stand up under scrutiny. Despite hundreds of views, I have yet to have one solid argument for the pro-choice side advocated. Mostly, it boils down to name-calling and appeals ad misericordiam. In light of strong arguments against abortion and the failings of arguments for abortion (noted here, here, and here, for some examples), the pro-choice position falls by the wayside.
So it appears to me that the pro-choice position is the rule of the minority in more ways than one. On the one hand, the position is losing popular support, and on the other, it lacks logical justification.
[Author’s Note: I will be away for about a week, so any new comments will be approved when I get to them]
Update. It looks like the 2009 Gallup poll may have been a temporary blip.
I wonder what caused it?
Thanks for the update! Thankfully, it seems scientifically and philosophically, the case for the pro-choice position is doomed to failure–or at least the embrace of infanticide (cf Singer).