(62) More Racism: Racial Disparity and the Demographics of Abortion

This episode piggybacks off the previous one by digging into the structures of racism in abortion. We discuss the shifting demographics of abortion and how the very people decrying abortion and attempting to legislate directly against it tend to be the group which creates and fosters the environments most conducive to producing abortions.

**Part of what makes this topic difficult is its changing statistics. For instance, there are many years in which "whites" count hispanics, thought that changes throughout the years. Another thing I want to point out is that due to proportions, it needs to be made clear that minorities do face a disproportionate number of abortions. The text below is from 1997 as just one example. I am not at all arguing that whites have had less of a problem with abortion proportionally, but that the general trend for whites is downward, while the trend for minorities is relatively static as far as it can be told from the data the CDC provides. A great look at this can be seen in the following site ( http://www.johnstonsarchive.net/policy/abortion/usa_abortion_by_race.html ), where the 2nd graph is of the most importance (abortions by race/ethnicity). What you will see is that the white abortions drop significantly, while the minority abortions do increase for a time, but then are largely level. Considering that the white population did not fall that much, while the minority population did increase, it seems fair to conclude that the white drop is disproportionate to the population drop.

Obviously you can look at various facets of the data, and it's a complex task. Hopefully I've been fair and accurate in this one focused assessment, but please do your own legwork and follow that up.

FROM: https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/67/ss/ss6713a1.htm
Among women whose race was reported (from 39 reporting areas), approximately 56% of women who obtained legal induced abortions were white (Table 9). The abortion ratio for black women was 543 per 1,000 live births, 2.8 times the ratio for white women (194 per 1,000 live births). However, numbers of abortions for white women include data for Hispanics and thus might affect comparisons from state to state. The abortion ratio for women of other races (341 per 1,000 live births) was 1.8 times the ratio for white women. In addition, the abortion rate for black women (32 per 1,000 women) was 2.9 times the rate for white women (11 per 1,000 women).


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