In your Oct. 11 opinion you opined that Ohio's decrease in the number of abortions, to 24,746, in 2011 from 2010 and the 11th year in a row of such decreases was a good thing for both pro-abortion and anti-abortion supporters. Whether, however, the fact that the number of abortions in Ohio has decreased to a certain number or has been decreasing for a period of time is good or bad should be judged in light of the totality of circumstances.
The purpose of this letter is to supplement your information with other facts, which may be helpful in reaching an accurate conclusion. During this 10-year period, the ratio of abortions to live births declined 20 percent, from 225 to 181 per 1,000. One would expect, assuming all other factors remained constant such as the frequency of pregnancy and rate of miscarriage, to see an increase in the number of live births.
Instead, the number of Ohio live births has declined for 11 years, from 155,721 in 2000 to 139,034 in 2010, an 11 percent drop. However, during this same period, the number of births by unwed mothers has increased from 34 percent to 44 percent of all live births, from 53,893 to 60,066.
About 85 percent of all women who obtain an abortion are unwed, 69 percent are economically disadvantaged, many lack even a high school education and close to half are less than 24 years old. It is these women who have been having fewer abortions, for reasons unknown at this point, and who are producing an ever increasing share of Ohio's next generation.
Project 10 years down the road when more than half of Ohio's children reside in a household headed only by a poorly educated and economically disadvantaged unwed mother and ask if this is a good thing for Ohio.