Abortion still “morally wrong,” latest Gallup showsBy Dave Andrusko
A Gallup poll conducted May 4-8 finds that more Americans still find abortion “morally wrong” (47%) than “morally acceptable” (43%). In 2015, Gallup’s numbers were 48% and 42% , respectively.
The breakdown along party lines is that only 24% of Republicans said abortion was morally acceptable, 44% of Independents, but 62% of Democrats.
A couple of background items.
First, the question is asked in this manner: “I’m going to read you a list of issues. Regardless of whether or not you think it should be legal, for each one, please tell me whether you personally believe that in general it is morally acceptable or morally wrong. How about abortion?”
As we have written countless times, if you breakdown responses to the question under what circumstances should abortion be legal, a majority opposes the reasons for which at least 90% of all abortions are performed. So, to most people, “in general” doesn’t necessarily tell you what you need to know about abortion in general, its morality in particular.
Second, “morally wrong” is much more categorical than “morally acceptable,” much more black and white. “Acceptable” is hardly an endorsement. What would be the response if the second option was whether the person thought abortion is “morally commendable”?
Third, when a recent survey conducted for the Knights of Columbus asked the question, 60% said they believed abortion is morally wrong, while only 37% think it is morally acceptable. Interestingly, exactly one-third of self-identified pro-choicers said abortion is morally wrong.
On an encouraging note, while there is still a majority who found “Doctor Assisted Suicide” morally acceptable, the numbers are down slightly from 2015 (naturally not noted by Gallup).
In 2016, 53% responded that they believed Doctor Assisted suicide is morally acceptable to 41% who said it is morally wrong .
In 2015, 56% said they believed Doctor Assisted Suicide was morally acceptable, to 37 who told Gallup they believed it was morally wrong.
Needless to add, the “Doctor assisted” label increases support. Even now, people are more likely to voice support when a “doctor” is involved.