Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

A subtle but powerful pro-life argument presented in (!) the New York Times

By Phil Lawler (bio - articles - email) | Jan 22, 2013

Today’s New York Times carries a stunning op-ed piece by Chuck Donovan on abortion statistics. I say it’s “stunning” for two different reasons, which apply to two different categories of readers.

Some readers will be stunned to learn that the federal government does not maintain reliable statistics on abortion. Donovan begins his column by suggesting that while Americans are severely divided on the abortion issue, there should be one point on which all reasonable people agree:

… wherever we stand on the issue, we ought to have access to high-quality, up-to-date information on how many women in each state are undergoing the procedure, by what method, at what stage of pregnancy and how many times... Americans should insist that abortion statistics be comprehensively gathered, rapidly totaled and assessed, and reliably published by a publicly accountable body.

How can anyone disagree with that point? How can anyone argue against collecting scientific data, against making informed decisions on an important public-policy issue?

But the truth is that many people, especially abortion advocates, don’t want to collect data because they don’t want to uncover the ugly realities of abortion. Donovan is actually making a subtle but powerful argument for informed consent—for the notion that we as a nation, as well as individuals, should know the facts before we make decisions about abortion.

Which brings me to the 2nd stunning thing about Donovan’s column. Readers who have been following the abortion issue carefully were already familiar with his arguments. What was stunning was to see those arguments presented on the pages of the New York Times.

An appeal from our founder, Dr. Jeffrey Mirus:

Dear reader: If you found the information on this page helpful in your pursuit of a better Catholic life, please support our work with a donation. Your donation will help us reach seven million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!

Our Fall Campaign
Progress toward our year-end goal ($27,707 to go):
$150,000.00 $122,292.96
18% 82%
Sound Off! CatholicCulture.org supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

There are no comments yet for this item.

Fall 2014 Campaign
Subscribe for free
Shop Amazon
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

Another side of Francis: US-Cuba role shows Pope's diplomatic muscle 0 hours ago
Silly season: a Christmas approaches, a scholar questions whether Jesus ever existed 0 hours ago
The intrinsic immorality of torture: still not convinced? 5 hours ago
The Complexity of Reforming Religious Communities December 17
Speaking Softly to Women Religious December 16

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope Francis: Europe seems 'elderly and haggard' CWN - November 25
Pope Francis, Ecumenical Patriarch sign joint declaration, lament persecution of Christians CWN - December 1
Consistory for new cardinals scheduled for February CWN - December 11
Vatican report on US women religious calls for further self-assessment CWN - December 16
Pope brokered deal to open US-Cuba ties CWN - December 17