May 12, 2005

Statistics on "Unwanted Pregnancies"

Levitt's simplistic model of how abortion would cut crime by reducing "unwanted" births founders when you look at two facts: that, as Levitt admits, legalizing abortion greatly increased the number of unintended pregnancies, and that a lot of those unintended pregnancies go on to get born.

Physicians for Reproductive Health and the Alan Guttmacher Institute provide data that shows Levitt's simplistic model of "unwantedness" is a joke when applied to the real world. According to 1994 data, a full 48% of the 6.3 million pregnancies in the U.S. were unintended. Out of those 3.1 million unintended pregnancies, 47% were aborted, 13% miscarried, and a full 40% were born, or close to 1.25 million unintended births annually -- all with legalized abortion! This makes a hash out of Levitt's neat little model. I don't know what the overall effect is on who gets born, and he doesn't either.

My published articles are archived at -- Steve Sailer

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You haven't even begun to make a case. You provide no evidence that legalized abortion has not decreased the rate of unintended pregnancy. (e.g. provide data from before abortion was legalized). Noting the decline in total fertility reate after abortion was legalized it is reasonable to figure that unwanted pregnancies may have declined as well. (Teasing out how much of this is because of new methods, because of public funding for contraception, abortion legalization - there is where fun begins.)