toggle menu
menu
vocabulary
1000+ books
Go to Book

abortion
used in Freakonomics

89 uses
(click/touch triangles for details)
Definition
intentional ending of pregnancy by killing and removing the fetus or embryo
  • All she had wanted was an abortion.
    p. 3.9
  • But in Texas, as in all but a few states at that time, abortion was illegal.
    p. 4.1
  • They made her the lead plaintiff in a class-action lawsuit seeking to legalize abortion.
    p. 4.1
  • Roe, allowing legalized abortion throughout the United States.
    p. 4.3
  • McCorvey/Roe to have her abortion.
    p. 4.4
  • Years later she would renounce her allegiance to legalized abortion and become a pro-life activist.
    p. 4.4
  • And the millions of women most likely to have an abortion in the wake of Roe 1, Wade—poor, unmarried, and teenage mothers for whom illegal abortions had been too expensive or too hard to get—were often models of adversity.
    p. 4.7
  • And the millions of women most likely to have an abortion in the wake of Roe 1, Wade—poor, unmarried, and teenage mothers for whom illegal abortions had been too expensive or too hard to get—were often models of adversity.
    p. 4.7
  • Now, as the crime-drop experts (the former crime doomsayers) spun their theories to the media, how many times did they cite legalized abortion as a cause?
    p. 5.1
  • This isn't a book about the cost of chewing gum versus campaign spending per se, or about disingenuous real-estate agents, or the impact of legalized abortion on crime.
    p. 11.3
  • In 1966, one year after Nicolae Ceausescu became the Communist dictator of Romania, he made abortion illegal.
    p. 115.2
  • Ceauescu's ban on abortion was designed to achieve one of his major aims: to rapidly strengthen Romania by boosting its population.
    p. 116.2
  • Until 1966, Romania had had one of the most liberal abortion policies in the world.
    p. 116.3
  • Abortion was in fact the main form of birth control, with four abortions for every live birth.
    p. 116.3
  • Abortion was in fact the main form of birth control, with four abortions for every live birth.
    p. 116.3
  • Now, virtually overnight, abortion was forbidden.
    p. 116.3
  • Within one year of the abortion ban, the Romanian birth rate had doubled.
    p. 116.6
  • Compared to Romanian children born just a year earlier, the cohort of children born after the abortion ban would do worse in every measurable way: they would test lower in school, they would have less success in the labor market, and they would also prove much more likely to become criminals.
    p. 116.8
  • The abortion ban stayed in effect until Ceausescu finally lost his grip on Romania.
    p. 116.9
  • It should not be overlooked that his demise was precipitated in large measure by the youth of Romania—a great number of whom, were it not for his abortion ban, would never have been born at all.
    p. 117.7
  • The story of abortion in Romania might seem an odd way to begin telling the story of American crime in the 1990s.
    p. 117.7
  • In one important way, the Romanian abortion story is a reverse image of the American crime story.
    p. 117.8
  • The point of overlap was on that Christmas Day of 1989, when Nicolae Ceausescu learned the hard way—with a bullet to the head—that his abortion ban had much deeper implications than he knew.
    p. 117.9
  • Suddenly and without warning, Nicolae Ceausescu declared abortion illegal.
    p. 136.7
  • The children born in the wake of the abortion ban were much more likely to become criminals than children born earlier.
    p. 136.7
  • In most of these cases, abortion was not forbidden outright, but a woman had to receive permission from a judge in order to obtain one.
    p. 136.8
  • Researchers found that in the instances where the woman was denied an abortion, she often resented her baby and failed to provide it with a good home.
    p. 136.9
  • The United States, meanwhile, has had a different abortion history than Europe.
    p. 137.1
  • In the early days of the nation, it was permissible to have an abortion prior to "quickening"—that is, when the first movements of the fetus could be felt, usually around the sixteenth to eighteenth week of pregnancy.
    p. 137.2
  • In 1828, New York became the first state to restrict abortion; by 1900 it had been made illegal throughout the country.
    p. 137.3
  • Abortion in the twentieth century was often dangerous and usually expensive.
    p. 137.3
  • Fewer poor women, therefore, had abortions.
    p. 137.4
  • In the late 1960s, several states began to allow abortion under extreme circumstances: rape, incest, or danger to the mother.
    p. 137.5
  • By 1970 five states had made abortion entirely legal and broadly available: New York, California, Washington, Alaska, and Hawaii.
    p. 137.5
  • On January 22, 1973, legalized abortion was suddenly extended to the entire country with the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling in Roe v. Wade.
    p. 137.6
  • In the first year after Roe v. Wade, some 750,000 women had abortions in the United States (representing one abortion for every 4 live births).
    p. 138.4
  • In the first year after Roe v. Wade, some 750,000 women had abortions in the United States (representing one abortion for every 4 live births).
    p. 138.4
  • By 1980 the number of abortions reached 1.
    p. 138.5
  • 6 million abortions per year—one for every 140 Americans—may not have seemed so dramatic.
    p. 138.5
  • In the first year after Nicolae Ceausescu's death, when abortion was reinstated in Romania, there was one abortion for every twenty-two Romanians.
    p. 138.6
  • In the first year after Nicolae Ceausescu's death, when abortion was reinstated in Romania, there was one abortion for every twenty-two Romanians.
    p. 138.6
  • Before Roe v. Wade, it was predominantly the daughters of middle— or upper-class families who could arrange and afford a safe illegal abortion.
    p. 138.8
  • Now, instead of an illegal procedure that might cost $500, any woman could easily obtain an abortion, often for less than $100.
    p. 138.9
  • One study has shown that the typical child who went unborn in the earliest years of legalized abortion would have been 50 percent more likely than average to live in poverty; he would have also been 60 percent more likely to grow up with just one parent.
    p. 139.0
  • In other words, the very factors that drove millions of American women to have an abortion also seemed to predict that their children, had they been born, would have led unhappy and possibly criminal lives.
    p. 139.4
  • To be sure, the legalization of abortion in the United States had myriad consequences.
    p. 139.5
  • Conceptions rose by nearly 30 percent, but births actually fell by 6 percent, indicating that many women were using abortion as a method of birth control, a crude and drastic sort of insurance policy.
    p. 139.7
  • Perhaps the most dramatic effect of legalized abortion, however, and one that would take years to reveal itself, was its impact on crime.
    p. 139.7
  • Legalized abortion led to less unwantedness; unwantedness leads to high crime; legalized abortion, therefore, led to less crime.
    p. 140.1
  • Legalized abortion led to less unwantedness; unwantedness leads to high crime; legalized abortion, therefore, led to less crime.
    p. 140.1
  • Perhaps abortion and crime are merely correlated and not causal.
    p. 140.3
  • How, then, can we tell if the abortion-crime link is a case of causality rather than simply correlation?
    p. 140.8
  • One way to test the effect of abortion on crime would be to measure crime data in the five states where abortion was made legal before the Supreme Court extended abortion rights to the rest of the country.
    p. 140.9
  • One way to test the effect of abortion on crime would be to measure crime data in the five states where abortion was made legal before the Supreme Court extended abortion rights to the rest of the country.
    p. 140.9
  • One way to test the effect of abortion on crime would be to measure crime data in the five states where abortion was made legal before the Supreme Court extended abortion rights to the rest of the country.
    p. 140.9
  • In New York, California, Washington, Alaska, and Hawaii, a woman had been able to obtain a legal abortion for at least two years before Roe v. Wade.
    p. 140.9
  • What else might we look for in the data to establish an abortion-crime link?
    p. 141.3
  • One factor to look for would be a correlation between each state's abortion rate and its crime rate.
    p. 141.3
  • Sure enough, the states with the highest abortion rates in the 1970s experienced the greatest crime drops in the 1990s, while states with low abortion rates experienced smaller crime drops.
    p. 141.4
  • Sure enough, the states with the highest abortion rates in the 1970s experienced the greatest crime drops in the 1990s, while states with low abortion rates experienced smaller crime drops.
    p. 141.4
  • Since 1985, states with high abortion rates have experienced a roughly 30 percent drop in crime relative to low-abortion states.
    p. 141.6
  • Since 1985, states with high abortion rates have experienced a roughly 30 percent drop in crime relative to low-abortion states.
    p. 141.6
  • New York City had high abortion rates and lay within an early-legalizing state, a pair of facts that further dampen the claim that innovative policing caused the crime drop.
    p. 141.6
  • Moreover, there was no link between a given state's abortion rate and its crime rate before the late 1980s—when the first cohort affected by legalized abortion was reaching its criminal prime—which is yet another indication that Roe v. Wade was indeed the event that tipped the crime scale.
    p. 141.7
  • Moreover, there was no link between a given state's abortion rate and its crime rate before the late 1980s—when the first cohort affected by legalized abortion was reaching its criminal prime—which is yet another indication that Roe v. Wade was indeed the event that tipped the crime scale.
    p. 141.8
  • There are even more correlations, positive and negative, that shore up the abortion-crime link.
    p. 141.9
  • In states with high abortion rates, the entire decline in crime was among the post-Roe cohort as opposed to older criminals.
    p. 141.9
  • Also, studies of Australia and Canada have since established a similar link between legalized abortion and crime.
    p. 142.0
  • To discover that abortion was one of the greatest crime-lowering factors in American history is, needless to say, jarring.
    p. 142.2
  • The crime drop was, in the language of economists, an "unintended benefit" of legalized abortion.
    p. 142.4
  • But one need not oppose abortion on moral or religious grounds to feel shaken by the notion of a private sadness being converted into a public good.
    p. 142.4
  • Indeed, there are plenty of people who consider abortion itself to be a violent crime.
    p. 142.5
  • One legal scholar called legalized abortion worse than either slavery (since it routinely involves death) or the Holocaust (since the number of post-Roe abortions in the United States, roughly thirty-seven million as of 2004, outnumber the six million Jews killed in Europe).
    p. 142.6
  • One legal scholar called legalized abortion worse than either slavery (since it routinely involves death) or the Holocaust (since the number of post-Roe abortions in the United States, roughly thirty-seven million as of 2004, outnumber the six million Jews killed in Europe).
    p. 142.6
  • Whether or not one feels so strongly about abortion, it remains a singularly charged issue.
    p. 142.7
  • A few years earlier, Bouza had written a book in which he called abortion "arguably the only effective crime-prevention device adopted in this nation since the late 1960s."
    p. 142.9
  • However a person feels about abortion, a question is likely to come to mind: what are we to make of the trade-off of more abortion for less crime?
    p. 142.9
  • However a person feels about abortion, a question is likely to come to mind: what are we to make of the trade-off of more abortion for less crime?
    p. 143.1
  • This is nothing but a thought exercise—obviously there is no right answer—but it may help clarify the impact of abortion on crime.
    p. 144.4
  • The second person, believing that a woman's right to an abortion trumps any other factor, would likely argue that no number of fetuses can equal even one newborn.
    p. 144.7
  • 5 million abortions in the United States every year.
    p. 145.2
  • 5 million abortions would translate—dividing 1.
    p. 145.3
  • And it is far more than the number of homicides eliminated each year due to legalized abortion.
    p. 145.6
  • So even for someone who considers a fetus to be worth only one one-hundredth of a human being, the trade-off between higher abortion and lower crime is, by an economist's reckoning, terribly inefficient.
    p. 145.7
  • What the link between abortion and crime does say is this: when the government gives a woman the opportunity to make her own decision about abortion, she generally does a good job of figuring out if she is in a position to raise the baby well.
    p. 145.7
  • What the link between abortion and crime does say is this: when the government gives a woman the opportunity to make her own decision about abortion, she generally does a good job of figuring out if she is in a position to raise the baby well.
    p. 145.8
  • If she decides she can't, she often chooses the abortion.
    p. 145.9
  • As the link between abortion and crime makes clear, unwanted children—who are disproportionately subject to neglect and abuse—have worse outcomes than children who were eagerly welcomed by their parents.
    p. 154.5
  • To claim that legalized abortion resulted in a massive drop in crime will inevitably lead to explosive moral reactions.
    p. 210.2

There are no more uses of "abortion" in Freakonomics.

Typical Usage  (best examples)
Dictionary / pronunciation — Google®Dictionary list — Onelook.com®Wikipedia Article