British Catholic Bishop Says Abortion Has Led to More Crime as Life Devalued

International   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Aug 27, 2008   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

British Catholic Bishop Says Abortion Has Led to More Crime as Life Devalued

by Steven Ertelt Editor
August 27
, 2008

London, England ( — A Catholic bishop in England says that abortion has led to more crime there as it has resulted in a devaluing of human life as a whole. The comments from Rt. Reverend Patrick O’Donoghue, the Bishop of Lancaster, appear to go along with a new study showing crime increasing in the UK along with legal abortions.

O’Donoghue says he’s convinced the 1967 Abortion Act that legalized abortion in Britain has resulted in an increased amount of violence, especially among younger people.

"All of us have seen in the news the frequent reports of young people killing strangers in the street, killing fathers defending their property, killing people with learning difficulties, killing other young people who are different to them," he told the London Telegraph.

"For 41 years we’ve lived in a state-sponsored culture of death that has killed five million children, and we’re now surprised that some of the surviving children have turned out violent with no regard for the sanctity of life?" he said.

O’Donoghue continued, "How many children know that their mothers have had an abortion? What effect will it have on them knowing that they have been deprived of a brother or sister through abortion? If a society holds human life so cheaply is it any surprise that young people will also hold life cheaply and engage in violence?"

He said the British people have gotten the message that if the government supports crimes against human life that it must be okay for the public to engage in them.

In April, a trio of economists released the results of a new study disproving the supposed link between the legalization of abortion and a reduction in crime.

John Donohue and Steven Levitt first introduced the repeatedly-criticized Freakonomics theory in 2001 and the British report also showed it is untrue.

Three economists — Cal State University economics professor Leo Kahane, Nottingham University Business School professor David Paton and Rob Simmons of Lancaster University — reviewed the hypothesis using both American and British data.

The three focused on England because abortions have been legal there longer (1969 versus 1973 for the United States) and because the British health system requires all abortions be reported to the government, unlike in the U.S.

The economists evaluated both violent and nonviolent (property) crimes in the U.S. and England and found violent crimes in the UK increasing steadily over the years following legalized abortion.


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