A Centers for Disease Control report on pregnancy and abortion has some interesting and good news about both subjects. First, pregnancy rates, birth rates and abortion rates among teenagers are down, precipitously so for abortions. Indeed, the abortion rate among this cohort has dropped over-one half since 1990, and the overall abortion rate has declined by 32 percent since 1990. Everyone, no matter their views on this fraught subject, can applaud this development.
Also interesting is this: pregnancy rates dropped among all age categories in each measured year (see below), except that women over the age of 30 experienced higher rates of pregnancy. This is no doubt the result of more and more women delaying pregnancy as they attain graduate and professional degrees or simply focus on their careers. Moreover, women no longer feel the societal pressure to get married as early as they once did and many are just happy being independent rather than saddled with a husband or significant other they're not quite content with.
Additionally, while there is still a divergence in teenage pregnancy rates by race, this CDC chart shows that Hispanic and Black teen pregnancy rates are dropping.
Overall, this report is welcome good news. It also seems to be a data point undercutting cultural critics who make a living decrying the ruinous state of America, pop culture, Hollywood, so on and so forth. For example, Charles Murray, author of the infamous Bell Curve, latest book decries the "coming apart" of White America -- hint, they're adopting the alleged cultural traits of the urban poor. And don't forget the people who were outraged (outraged!) by Miley Cyrus's stunt at the VMAs. Our children should not be exposed to such overt sexuality.
We Believe Local Journalism is Critical to the Life of a City
Engaging with our readers is essential to the mission of the Houston Press. Make a financial contribution or sign up for a newsletter, and help us keep telling Houston’s stories with no paywalls.
Support Our Journalism
The facts seem to suggest otherwise. Abortion rates are plummeting, teenage pregnancies -- a quick ticket to poverty -- are dropping among all races. Next time the cultural blue-noses get twisted up in outrage, point them to these facts.