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Pew: Unitarians, Atheists, Agnostics Most Favorable to Abortion

WASHINGTON - JANUARY 22: Local pro-choice activist Lisa King holds a sign in front of the U.S. Supreme Court as a pro-life activist holds a rose nearby during the annual "March for Life" event January 22, 2009 in Washington, DC. The event was to mark the anniversary of the 1973 …
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THOMAS D. WILLIAMS, PH.D.

Those who identify as Unitarian Universalists, Atheists or Agnostics are the strongest supporters of legalized abortion in America, according to a report published by the Pew Research Center this week.

Ninety percent of members of the Unitarian Universalist Church, a liberal religion professing no creed or specific belief in God, said that abortion should be legal “in all or most cases,” Pew found, while atheists and agnostics followed behind with 87 percent of each group asserting the same thing.

Notably, 75 percent of all Americans are against abortion-on-demand and believe that abortion should not be legal in all cases, as it is currently in the United States. This means there is significant support among voters for restrictions on legal abortions.

The majorities of nearly all mainline Christian churches agreed to the same statement, though in smaller percentages, while less than 50 percent of Catholics and evangelicals believe that abortion should be legal in all or most cases. Seventy-nine percent of Episcopalians, 65 percent of Presbyterians, 58 percent of Methodists, and 56 percent of Anglicans support legal abortion “in all or most cases.”

American Jews, Buddhists, and Hindus are among the groups most favorable to legal abortion, with 83 percent, 82 percent, and 68 percent respectively supporting legal abortion “in all or most cases,” Pew found.

At the opposite end of the spectrum, the majorities of most Evangelical churches believe that abortion should be illegal in all or most cases, as do Jehovah’s Witnesses as well as Mormons.

Seventy-seven percent of members of the Church of God, 71 percent of members of the Assemblies of God, and 66 percent of members of the Southern Baptist Convention would like to see abortion made illegal in all or most cases.

In relation to party affiliation, nearly two-thirds of Republicans (65 percent) say abortion should be illegal in all or most cases, whereas three-quarters (75%) of Democrats say abortion should be legal in all or most cases. Among independents, 60 percent believe abortion should be legal in all or most cases.

Last week, President Trump reinstated Sanctity of Human Life Day on Jan. 22, after the eight years during which the Obama administration declined to observe the commemoration, which was begun in 1984 by President Ronald Reagan.

“Science continues to support and build the case for life,” the 2018 proclamation reads. “Medical technologies allow us to see images of the unborn children moving their newly formed fingers and toes, yawning, and even smiling. Those images present us with irrefutable evidence that babies are growing within their mothers’ wombs — precious, unique lives, each deserving a future filled with promise and hope.”

Such medical advances “give us an even greater appreciation for the humanity of the unborn,” it reads.

Among those who describe themselves as liberal Democrats, the vast majority (91 percent) supports legal abortion while six-in-ten (61 percent) of conservative and moderate Democrats say abortion should be legal in all or most cases.

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