Special to WorldTribune.com
Proponents of unchecked abortion in the United States are clearly losing momentum as several states enact laws to protect human life inside the womb. Bills banning abortion once a heartbeat can be detected have passed in Georgia, Alabama and Missouri in recent weeks, and pro-life legislation has advanced in several other states as well over the past few years.
It should not be a surprise then to see abortion advocates dusting off a tired eugenics cliché in their strained efforts to justify the slaughter of innocents.
Stanford Professor John Donohue and University of Chicago economist Steven Levitt have been pushing a claim for 20 years now that legalized abortion has drastically reduced the crime rate in America. “Most of the reduction [in crime],” the two stated in 1999, “appears to be attributable to higher rates of abortion by mothers whose children are most likely to be at risk for future crime.” Donohue and Levitt specifically mentioned teens, black women and unmarried women as fitting this profile.
The assertion drew its greatest attention in 2005 when Levitt included it in his popular economics book Freakonomics, which he co-wrote with New York Times journalist Steven Dubner. An actually positive review at the libertarian Mises Institute best sums up the intellectual heft of the “research” to be found in the book. “Freakonomics has been criticized for its controversial content, its lack of scholarly rigor, trivial subject matter and conclusions,” reviewer Doug French wrote, before rather incongruously declaring that he was nevertheless happy to see the book become a bestseller.
Indeed, Levitt fully revealed the shallowness of his “scholarship” on the abortion-crime rate issue in remarks made on a 2011 podcast on the Freakonomics website:
“So, what does this legalized abortion have to do with crime? Well, the argument’s really simple, that there’s enormous volumes of scholarship going back 50 years that suggest that unwanted children are at risk for crime. Basically, if your mother doesn’t love you, nothing very good is going to happen to you in your life. It’s also pretty clear that after legalized abortion became available, the number of unwanted children plummeted, so we see that the number of domestic children put up for adoption went way down. And in surveys, if you ask women whether they had unwanted births, those went way down as well. So, those two simple pieces of the argument are all it takes.”
These wildly sweeping judgments were the foundation for Donohue and Levitt’s research. The two are now back in the news with an update that – ta-da – pronounces that all their claims have been proven to be true.
“Decades of social scientific research have demonstrated that unwanted children are at an elevated risk for less favorable life outcomes including criminal involvement, and the legalization of abortion appears to have dramatically reduced the number of unwanted births,” Donohue and Levitt state.
“Correlation isn’t causation,” is the short but sweet rebuttal from University of Chicago law professor Douglas Baird of the renewed effort to push these dubious findings. But what makes the crass appeal to exterminate all human life conceived under trying circumstances in America so galling is that the very same Freakonomics website affiliated with Levitt fawns over the advocates of massive immigration into the U.S.
Tears For Foreign Babies
For the Freakonomics crowd, American babies with struggling mothers are better off being snuffed out in the womb but the children of desperate foreigners are another matter entirely. In a 2007 blog post on the website bluntly titled “The Case for Open Immigration,” British economist Phillipe Legrain paints the father of a 20-month Honduran child as a heroic figure for trying to illegally sneak into the U.S. Inmer Omar Rivera couldn’t make enough money to get by in Honduras. “[U]nfortunately, he is not allowed into the U.S. legally — because he is poor, from Honduras, and has no family in the U.S.,” Legrain says. A full sob story follows. “I don’t know what has happened to Inmer since I interviewed him. I hope he made it across the border and is building a better life for himself and his family,” Legrain concluded.
Also on the site is a 2015 podcast titled “Is Migration a Basic Human Right?” While ostensibly seeking to present both sides of the argument, the conversation is unmistakably pro-migration. A comment by George Mason University economics professor Alex Tabarrok perfectly captures the tenor of the discussion. Tabarrok states he has an interest in immigration issues “not so much as a research question but more as almost a moral question. Why do we have these tremendous boundaries for people simply exercising their right to move around? The right to move has got be one of the most fundamental rights and yet, for strange reasons, it stops at these arbitrary boundaries we call ‘national borders.'”
If you’re keeping score at home, abortion is a matter of cold, impersonal likely social outcomes while massive unchecked immigration that erases borders is a moral imperative. It’s hard to take backers of utilitarian abortion such as the Freaknonomics folks seriously when they celebrate the entry of millions of impoverished foreigners into our nation while at the very same time arguing that native babies with imperfect home situations should be annihilated.
The Freakonomics site also posted a fawning two-part interview in 2017 with globalist business oligarch Charles Koch titled “Why Hate the Koch Brothers?” Koch showcases his solely materialistic view of human labor by stating, “[m]y views on immigration are the same as they are on any imports of goods and services, not just people. I would let anybody in who will make the country better and no one who will make that worse. That would be the same thing [with] people who are here illegally. If you’re here, gainfully employed, and adding value in society then you ought to stay.”
Instead of trying to build a nation that strives to give all Americans, including the unborn, a genuine opportunity to employ their Constitutional right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, our modern-day utilitiarians only ask if you are good for business, and care not whether you are even a citizen in the first place. This does not make for a healthy society.
In Levitt we see once again a clear and very disturbing connection between the most hard-hearted promoters of abortion and the forces of massive immigration. This was also the case with Kathy Tran, the Virginia state delegate who horrified the country by drafting and callously defending proposed legislation to legalize abortion up to the moment of birth. Tran is not so coincidentally also an enthusiastic supporter of unbridled immigration. She even has dared to use the argument that “there are places across the U.S. where the native-born population just is not keeping pace with the workforce needs of businesses.”
Steven Levitt’s Freakonomics fraud similarly calls for the use of abortion to keep the native-born U.S. population in check while promoting the importation of foreigners into the nation on a massive scale. Any sane impartial observer judging from afar would conclude that an invasion is in full effect with the explicit goal of replacing the current citizenry of the United States of America.