Abortion and the Race Issue

Some years ago, I testified at the Georgia state capitol in Atlanta on the subject of abortion regulations and their constitutionality.  I will never forget the testimony that day of women who have had abortions and have come to greatly regret that choice.  In particular, there was a young, black woman who tearfully recounted her dreams of a son who asked her why she ended his life.  Moving past the intense power of her story, she went on to tell what she knew about the disparate racial impact of abortion on the African-American community.  Afterwards, an African-American state senator from the Democrat party questioned her about whether her claims were really true.

Do African-Americans have more abortions? The answer is yes.  A number of pro-life academics have created the website Moral Accountability to encourage the group of evangelical and Catholic intellectuals who supported Obama on the basis that he would reduce the incidence of abortion to keep him morally accountable.  Writing for that website, Union University’s Micah Watson (a former student of Princeton’s Robert George) offers detailed statistics on African-Americans and abortion.

Read it all, but here’s a sample:

Consider the following: African-Americans make up 26% of the population of Alabama; they account for 54.7% of the abortions; 29.6% of Georgia’s roughly 8 million citizens are African-Americans yet African-Americans make up 57.8% of the abortions; in North Carolina the population percentage is 21.3% while the proportion of black abortions is 44.2%; in my adopted home state of Tennessee, African-Americans are 16.6% of the population yet make up 41.6% of the abortions; most egregious, however, is Mississippi where African-Americans make up 37.1% of the population and a mind-boggling 77.2% of the abortions. In fact, in every state where African-Americans make up more than 10% of the population, the black abortion rate far exceeds the population percentage, often by a factor of two or three.

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