The False side of Freakonomics, or The Economic Abortion Query

Economics. It seems like such a safe subject, right? Think of the television commercials that look at the ‘cause and effect’ of being Phil Shifley – they show how the most unforeseen outcome can be the answer to a scenario; but Occam’s razor is a principle stating that among competing hypotheses, the answer is the most obvious [most sense or path of least resistance]. Essentially, unless the math doesn’t jive, it’s conjecture. The math of this abortion equation does NOT jive….how can this have possibly been calculated when ‘cause and effect’ cannot be totally determined. Incidentally, cause and effect are philosophical, not statistical.

The abortion economic question is this: Was abortion the answer to lower criminal activity BECAUSE of their mother’s present economic and social status?

The author of ‘Freakonomics’ wrote: “The very factors that drove millions of American women to have an abortion also seemed to predict that their children, had they been born, would have led unhappy and possibly criminal lives…….Perhaps the most dramatic effect of legalized abortion, however, and one that would take years to reveal itself, was its impact on crime. In the early 1990s, just as the first cohort of children born after Roe v. Wade was hitting its late teen years—the years during which young men enter their criminal prime—the rate of crime began to fall. What this cohort was missing, of course, were the children who stood the greatest chance of becoming criminals. And the crime rate continued to fall as an entire generation came of age minus the children whose mothers had not wanted to bring a child into the world. Legalized abortion led to less unwantedness; unwantedness leads to high crime; legalized abortion, therefore, led to less crime.”

Also know that the author commented that having a swimming pool in your back yard makes your child more likely to die than not having a pool. I might agree to that, and add that having a way to harm a child close at hand, whether it is a swimming pool or an abortion practitioner, to be a very BAD DECISION and can result in a child’s death. Further, the child can be taught to stay away from the pool, a fence with a locked gate can be installed, BUT an abortion is something a child does not accidentally fall into and drown. A choice was made FOR the child to die because of his/her economic status, and now the scenario of the swimming pool is safe from the child’s certain drowning death. To be clear, most poverty stricken families do not have swimming pools to be concerned about. Their argument is perverse and invalid, even offensive.

Following the absurdity of Freakonomics is, well, absurd. The likelihood of a child born in poverty becoming a criminal is the same as any person born, regardless of the child’s circumstances. Was abortion the answer to lower criminal activity BECAUSE of their mother’s present economic and social status? Some would assume that to be true. The truth is that most moms are much more concerned about their own poverty FIRST. The author of Freakonomics did not consider the truth of the situation, who actually aborts, and why.

QUESTION: Who here is responsible for how they were conceived? A compelling thought, a reasonable consideration. 

Of course I have a problem with this scenario using abortion to kill would-be criminals, and particularly with the author of Freakonomics, because IF his so-called research is correct, then every third-world child would never live outside the womb because they will always be in poverty, malnourished and ill. Billionaires like Bill and Melinda Gates uses population control to decide who gets to be born in developing countries because of the unborn child’s circumstances and his/her parent’s economic status. Again, who here is responsible for how they were conceived? 

Even if there is just one parent, a child’s life can have meaning and true purpose. A parent’s job is to bring up a child to be a good friend, parent, spouse, worker, and citizen. Cause and effect makes for interesting conversation but should NEVER determine the outcome of life and death for anyone that cannot testify on their own behalf.