Saturday, December 12, 2015

Rape and abortion

People assume that impregnated rape victims will be the ones first in line at the abortion clinic. But is that armchair psychology?

HT" Michael Pieters.



Angra Mainyu said...


I don't know who the people who assume that are, but the hypothesis that in the US all rape victims who become pregnant as a result - or nearly all - will seek an abortion seems quite improbable to me, even without looking at the statistics, since:
1. The influence of the belief that abortion is murder (i.e., as immoral as murdering an adult for similar reasons) promoted mostly by Christian and a few other activists, is likely to convince many not to abort.
2. Rape victims with access to emergency contraception will very probably choose EC over abortion. Rape victims who choose not to use EC even though they could are more likely to believe abortion is murder, and are less likely to do it.
3. The fact that pregnancies resulting from abortion are in a high number of cases only discovered during the second trimester would probably make women all other things equal less inclined to abort (of course, other things aren't equal if a woman was raped, but my point is that the rate would probably be higher if the pregnancy were discovered earlier).

Even so, I would expect that many would want to abort. On that note, if the numbers in the study cited in the article you link to hold for the general population of the US in 2015, then it remains the case that 15-25% chose abortion. I would have to check the numbers, but I'd say that rate is probably higher than it is among pregnancies that were not intended.

That aside, here's another study. In that study, "32.2% opted to keep the infant whereas 50% underwent abortion and 5.9% placed the infant for adoption; an additional 11.8% had spontaneous abortion."
That is a very different number.

John Moore said...

From a long-term evolutionary perspective, the reason rape even exists is because rape victims tended not to abort.

Angra Mainyu said...


In the ancestral environment, abortion generally wasn't an option - not without taking huge risks.
Moreover, the connection between sex and pregnancy probably wasn't understood.
That said, it's not clear whether rape wouldn't exist if the victims tended to abort. Rapists might well still reproduce through consensual sex, and sometimes (even if less frequently) by means of rape.

IlĂ­on said...

"From a long-term evolutionary perspective, the reason rape even exists is because rape victims tended not to abort.

From a long-term evolutionary perspective, the reason atheism is so marginal is because is because those infected with that particular "mind virus" tend not to conceive (and to abort, if they do).

Is that how "reasoning" in the mode of 'modern evolutionary theory' works?