Most Americans are alarmed at the nation’s high abortion rate, but don’t support criminalizing it. They want to keep abortion legal, but make it genuinely rare. In 2005, 68 percent of Americans agreed that abortion should be legal, at least in the first three months of pregnancy. We have supported a "consistent life ethic" - which seeks a dramatic reduction in the actual abortion rate in America, without criminalizing what is always a tragic choice and often a desperate one. Others also question if total abortion bans are really pro-life because of the likely consequences of back-alley abortions, especially for poor women.
It’s time for concrete action that would actually and seriously reduce the number of abortions in America. A better approach than the symbolic legal battle would be to gather new energy for a commitment to advancing real solutions. A constructive dialogue should include how best to prevent unwanted pregnancies, support pregnant women who find themselves in an unexpected situation, and effectively reduce the abortion rate.
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