Barna explains why Americans are confused about abortion

Friday, September 29, 2017
Steve Jordahl (

confusion 620x300Abortion continues to be a contentious issue among Americans, but a new survey shows it's increasingly a confusing one as well.

One-quarter of those who say they are pro-life believe abortions should be allowed if the unborn child is less than one month old – that's according to new data out from the American Culture & Faith Institute. The same data shows almost a quarter of pro-lifers believe abortions should be legal in all or most circumstances.

Christian pollster George Barna summarizes just one aspect of the new survey of 1,100 adults (age 18 or older).

"In spite of the fact that they call themselves 'pro-life' [and] they say that they wouldn't have an abortion or advise somebody to have an abortion, they think that everybody should have the right to choose," he tells OneNewsNow.

And according to the data, it's not just those on the pro-life side of the issue who have conflicting views. "Nearly nine out of ten adults who claim that they are pro-choice individuals also say that all human life is sacred," Barna states.


The reason for the dissonance? Barna argues that many Americans are suffering from "issue fatigue" when it comes to abortion.

"The different positions that people take on abortion-related issues just don't fit together at all – but it's also not something that seems to bother most of them," he explains. "They think Well, I'm doing the best I can to make sense of it – and if it doesn't fit together, I tried."

They also want to avoid the conflict that goes with taking a position, and they make their choices based on emotion rather than logic or faith – adding up to what he calls "a recipe for convoluted reasoning and indefensible positions."

Still, almost a million babies are ripped from their mothers' wombs every year, about 59 million since abortion became legal in 1973. So Barna says it's important to capture the nation's attention again, and videos – even some on the graphic side – seem to be the best way to do it, he shares.

"There's been some testing done in the last couple of years [indicating that] showing women who said that they were pro-choice advocates some of the procedures, showing them interviews with some of the doctors – frankly, it's one of the few things I've seen that has actually changed the opinions of pro-choice people to becoming pro-life."

He adds it would be helpful if pastors were more involved from the pulpit with life-affirming messages.

The survey also broached on such issues as morality, government regulation, public education, and funding of Planned Parenthood – the largest abortion-provider in the U.S.


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