Facts About Abortion
Geographic abortion statistics plus facts relating to law, history and more.
Facts and figures relating to the frequency of abortion in the United States.
The abortion statistics on this page come primarily from the Guttmacher Institute and the Centers for Disease Control. Current, nationwide abortion data is available through 2011. Additional, state-level abortion statistics are available for 2012.
State Abortion Facts
Comparative state abortion stats by rank, total, percentage, and total clinics.
The data table on this page provides a state-by-state comparison of abortion totals, rates and percentages—along with the total number of abortion facilities in each state. It also serves as a gateway to additional state-level abortion statistics.
Facts and figures relating to the frequency of abortion in Canada.
Facts and figures relating to the frequency of abortion in Great Britain.
Facts and figures relating to the frequency of abortion in Australia.
Facts and figures relating to the frequency of abortion in New Zealand.
Facts and figures relating to the incidence of abortion worldwide.
An overview of the history and legality of abortion in the United States.
The single decision of seven, non-elected justices has defined federal abortion policy in the United States. It was a decision explicitly defended on the basis of ignorance, under the claim that "no one knows when life begins." Like slavery before it, abortion is now central to the lives of many Americans, but no matter what the social cost may be, when laws victimize the weak and vulnerable, it is time for the law to change.
Prior to 1973, abortion was a states issue; most abortions, in most states were illegal.
Though individual states have retained some narrow, legal outlets for regulating abortion, Roe vs. Wade forbids them from outlawing abortion during the first trimester and binds them to an extremely broad "health" exception during the second and third trimester.
Unless the context is abortion, it is a federal crime to harm an unborn child.
As the law stands today, if a pregnant woman on her way to an abortion clinic (where her child will be legally killed), is assaulted in the street, causing the death of her unborn child, those who assaulted her would be guilty of manslaughter.
A look at the methods and perceived morality of abortion in the ancient world.
While the attitudes toward abortion widely varied in the Ancient world, the historical evidence strongly suggests that abortion and infanticide were common practices. Below is a collection of written testimony to ancient views and methods of abortion from ancient Greek and Roman writers. Click on the links to read the quotations in their context.
The 200-year history of abortion in America goes back way beyond 1973.
For those who support abortion, there is a tendency to argue that it has always been widely practiced and broadly accepted. Those who oppose abortion, however, generally argue that its permissive and widespread use is a recent phenomena. The truth probably lies somewhere in between.
Be wary when you hear the abortion industry suggesting ways to reduce abortion.
Does Planned Parenthood really have an interest in reducing the number of abortions? Should we take them seriously when they suggest ways to eliminate one of their primary income streams? Birth control cannot replace abortion, and the abortion industry knows that full well.
Barrier methods cannot cause abortion; hormonal methods are less certain.
Some birth control methods provide a physical barrier to conception without altering a woman's hormones. Others rely on hormones to prevent ovulation and restrict implantation—at least in theory. Whether or not hormonal birth control can cause an abortion is the subject of much debate.
Opposition to abortion and opposition to embryonic stem cell research go hand in hand.
Embryonic stem research cannot take place apart from dead human embryos. Embryonic stem cells cannot be culled without killing the embryo. Whether these tiny human beings are explicitly killed for research purposes or not, the ethics of the matter do not change.
Hundreds of millions of doses of vaccines have used aborted fetal remains.
The human diploid cells used to create some of the most common vaccines in the world were originally derived from aborted human beings. That creates a huge ethical dilemma for those who must explain why these fetuses are human enough to provide the human cells necessary for such cultivation, but not human enough to be protected under the law. Add to this the broader questions of vaccine safety, and there is much to wrestle with.