It has been 40 years since the U.S. Supreme Court ruling that protected a women’s right to an abortion in Roe v. Wade. Although abortion is still a highly debated topic after four decades, it would seem that most people don’t want the landmark ruling overturned, even though these same people find abortion morally wrong.
According to a survey conducted by the Pew Research Center, “more than six-in-ten (63%) say they would not like to see the court completely overturn the Roe v. Wade decision, which established a woman’s constitutional right to abortion at least in the first three months of pregnancy. Only about three-in-ten (29%) would like to see the ruling overturned. These opinions are little changed from surveys conducted 10 and 20 years ago.”
“Legalizing abortion does not make it right,” said Terri Robinson, director of the Pee Dee Crisis Pregnancy Center in Rockingham.
Tommy Jarrell, director of the Richmond County Health Department, said that in his opinion some women who choose to get an abortion might not think of other options available to them, such as adoption.
He said that his opinion is strictly personal and is not affiliated with the health department.
Jarrell said that he understands that there are times when a pregnancy must be terminated because the woman “may not medically be able to carry a baby. It may put her life in danger.”
There are many opinions about abortion and the milestone ruling among the elected officials who represent Richmond County and North Carolina in the nation’s capital.
“I am a strong supporter of a woman’s right to choose,” said U.S. Senator for North Carolina Kay Hagan, who is pro-choice.
U.S. Representative Richard Hudson, of North Carolina’s 8th Congressional District, said that he believes life is a gift from God and should be protected. “I believe that life begins at conception and I will support efforts and initiatives that advance this belief,” he said. The freshman congressman’s website says that he is 100 percent pro-life.
The survey also showed that the public is nearly divided when it comes to the questions of morality. Almost half of Americans, 47 percent, said they personally believe that abortion is morally wrong. This percentage is compared with 27 percent who say abortion is not a moral issue, 13 percent who find abortion acceptable and 9 percent who said that it depends on the situation.
Robinson said that abortion is a moral and critical issue and we need to be concerned about laws that devalue life. “A society who turns to death as a resolution to its problem eventually takes the ‘right to die’ issue to the ‘obligation to die,’” she said.
It seems that the public is more interested in other issues other than abortion. The survey, which polled 1,502 adults, found that 53 percent of respondents said that abortion “is not that important compared to other issues.”
This percentage is “up from 48% in 2009 and 32% in 2006. The percentage viewing abortion as a ‘critical issue facing the country’ fell from 28% in 2006 to 15% in 2009 and now stands at 18%,” the poll said.
These statistics about interest in abortion do not sway U.S. Senator for North Carolina Richard Burr’s opinion who said that even though “four decades have passed since the Supreme Court’s decision on Roe v. Wade, the fight to protect the rights of the unborn could not be more relevant today.”
Many of the politicians have promised to continue their abortion crusades no matter which side they are on.
Hudson said, “The Supreme Court’s decision in Roe v. Wade was a travesty and as the Representative for the 8th District, I will fight for North Carolina’s traditional values and defend life.”
“I remain committed to protecting the most vulnerable members of our society, the unborn, and to fighting any further attempts to provide federal funding and resources to fund abortions,” said Burr.
The poll said that those who would want to see Roe v. Wade overturned are more likely to view abortion as a critical issue facing the country. “Nearly four-in-ten (38%) of those who support overturning the abortion ruling say abortion is a critical issue, compared with just 9% of those who oppose overturning Roe v.Wade. Among those who favor retaining Roe, 68% say abortion is not that important compared with other issues,” the poll said.
Robinson said that reversing Roe v. Wade would not be enough.
“We need to pray until hearts are turned to recognize the marvelous creation of life within the womb. We need to pray until all human life is protected until natural death,” Robinson said.
— Staff Writer Laura Edington can be reached at 910-997-3111, ext. 18, or by email at email@example.com.