Communications Department

Statement of Randall K. O’Bannon, Ph.D.

Jan 21, 2014 | 2014 Press Releases

Based on recent figures released by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and earlier data from the Guttmacher Institute, National Right to Life now estimates that there have been more than 56 million abortions since 1973.

The enormity of this loss is difficult to fathom.

If a disease were to strike and kill a population the combined size of New York, Florida, and Illinois, if the lives of everyone in a country the size of Spain, or South Africa, Iraq or the Sudan were suddenly obliterated, it would still be less than the souls lost to abortion in the United States in the past 41 years.

To lose so many innocent lives is a tragedy of epic proportions. That this enormous and unnecessary loss of life is legally and in many quarters culturally sanctioned is a grave injustice, one National Right to Life has been working to combat since states began trying to legalize abortion in the 1960s.

Today, thanks to the efforts of National Right to Life, its network of 50 state right-to-life affiliates, more than 3,000 local chapters and the work of individual right-to-life activists throughout the country, abortion numbers, rates, and ratios have fallen to levels that have not been seen since the 1970s.

Abortions first topped a million a year in 1975 and were more than 1.3 million by 1977. They peaked in 1990 at 1.6 million. Thanks to pro-life education, outreach, and legislation, those numbers began falling until reaching what we today believe is somewhere between 1.1 and 1.2 million.

It isn’t simply that abortions dropped from somewhere between 25% and 30%, but that this translates into about 7 million more people alive today than there would have been if abortion levels had remained at the 1990 peak.

In the early days of Roe, people bought the lie that the unborn child was just a blob of tissue, a clump of cells. But with the advent of intraunterine photography, sonograms, and fetal heartbeat stethoscopes, the public received an education as to the undeniable humanity of the unborn child. Legislation also served an educational purpose, ensuring that women were exposed not only to information about their unborn children, but of better options available for them and their babies.

All this has resulted in not only attitudinal changes that can be seen in the polls, but also behavioral changes that can be seen in statistics. And this is why a pregnant woman today is much more likely to choose life for her child.

It is not as if the abortion industry has packed up and gone home. Overall, that industry is in decline, but giants like Planned Parenthood are not only growing their market share, but expanding their abortion empires.

Though it tries to minimize its involvement, Planned Parenthood has, for some time, been not just America’s biggest abortion promoter, but also its largest abortion chain, with its clinics today responsible for at least one out of every four abortions performed in the country.

Already a $1.2 billion dollar a year corporation, Planned Parenthood is building large megaclinics all across the country, hoping to expand its customer base. And to keep those megaclinics profitable, many of those women will be sold abortions.

Even counting all 327,166 of the abortions Planned Parenthood performed in 2012 as standard first trimester abortions being sold at the industry average cost of $451, the $147 million in revenues that represents would easily make abortion Planned Parenthood’s largest single income producing “service.” And this doesn’t even take into consideration the fact that many of Planned Parenthood’s clinics offer more expensive chemical abortion procedures and advertise and perform considerably more costly second trimester surgical abortions.

Planned Parenthood stands to bring in more customers and more money with the advent of Obamacare, one reason that Planned Parenthood was among the earliest and most ardent supporters of the “Affordable Care Act.”

Planned Parenthood works hard to make sure it has friends in high places, helping put politicians in office who will keep hundreds of millions of local, state, and federal taxpayer dollars flowing its way.

To see where Planned Parenthood’s commitments truly lie, look no further than its own 2012 service statistics. If Planned Parenthood is truly “pro-choice,” why is it that a pregnant woman walking into a Planned Parenthood clinic is fifteen times more likely to obtain an abortion than to get prenatal services (19,506) or an adoption referral (2,197)?

If one pays attention to what they do, rather than what they say, it becomes apparent that Planned Parenthood’s plans typically don’t involve parenthood.

It’s hard to match Planned Parenthood’s money or its political muscle, but we’ve made progress over the years. Thanks to our educational efforts, thanks to undercover journalism, thanks to brave souls who’ve left the industry and told about the heavy handed abortion agenda that drives the organization, people are beginning to get a glimpse of what Planned Parenthood really is.

It’s a place where a third of a million babies die each year and as many women are sent home wounded and poorer.