Poll: Most People in Most Nations Say Abortion is Morally Unacceptable

International   |   Rebecca Downs   |   May 8, 2014   |   1:13PM   |   Washington, DC

A recently released Global Views on Morality poll for 2013 from the Pew Research Global Attitudes Project, shows that a majority find abortion morally unacceptable. Global responses were found using the “[m]edian percentages of each issue based on 40 countries.” Respondents were asked if they found eight issues (extramarital affairs, gambling, homosexuality, abortion, premarital sex, alcohol consumption, divorce, and the use of contraceptives), morally unacceptable (U), morally acceptable (A), or not a moral issue (N).

The global response for abortion was broken down as: 56 percent unacceptable, 15 percent acceptable, 12 percent not a moral issue. The Pew poll itself mentions that “[g]enerally, affairs, gambling, homosexuality, and abortion are deemed unacceptable by the largest number of respondents.”

prolifeimage38When broken down by country, not one of the 40 have a majority of respondents who view abortion as morally acceptable. Those few countries which show the percentage of respondents viewing abortion as more morally acceptable or equally as include Japan (U-28, A-44, N-19), Australia (U-26, A-29, N-32), Canada (U-26, A-26, N-37), Spain, (U-26, A-35, N-28), Britain (U-25, A-27, N-28), Germany (U-19, A-43, N-25), Czech Republic (U-18, A-49, N-18) and France (U-14, A-38, N-47).

And, it is worth noting that some such countries either show a large number of respondents saying it is not a moral issue, that there is a small gap between those who view it as an unacceptable or acceptable issue, or both.

The breakdown for the United States puts the nation at number 27 of the 40 countries. Responses show that almost half view abortion as unacceptable, at 49 percent. Only 17 percent view abortion as abortion while 23 percent see it as not a moral issue.

The Pew poll states “…in advanced economies, such as those in Western Europe, Japan, and North America, people tend to be more accepting or to not consider these moral issues at all.” It is also worth noting that such a statement does reflect views on abortion for the most part. Such nations are known for their advanced economies, yes, and regarded as “tend[ing] to be more accepting…” but sadly such acceptance does not extend to the unborn then. Such countries are also known for their more relaxed stance on abortion.

It is encouraging though then that while the Untied States would be regarded as being one of the “advanced economies, such as those in Western Europe, Japan and North America…” the nation is not included with those who regard abortion as more morally acceptable than not.

However, it is unfortunate that such feelings on the acceptability of abortion, do not translate to being reflected in a nation’s law. This is especially the case in the United States. A recent report from the Charlotte Lozier Institute shows just how stark the reality is, as the United States is only one of seven nations which allows for elective abortions after 20 weeks.

If the numbers on abortion were to be ranked by laws then, especially laws reflecting views, the United States would be towards the bottom of the list. If the laws cannot protect all unborn children, even when global views show that abortion is rightly regarded as unacceptable, it is even more of a rallying cry to call on the United States to get more in line with global views, as well as its own views.

The views, but also the personal experiences and the feelings in the hearts, of many Americans already reflect that abortion is unacceptable. Shouldn’t our laws do the same?