Ann Arbor blogger Edgewise has an interesting self-debate over what is possibly the ultimate bugaboo of politics these days, abortion. He brings up some very good points. My own position has been, as usual, to straddle the fence in the middle. Abortions should be safe and very, very rare, but legal. Alternatives should be easily available, especially easier adoption. (Want to reduce the number of abortions? Let gay and lesbian couples adopt, for example.)

Statistics seem to bear out that the safe, legal and very rare thing works; abortions fell every year in the 1990s under Clinton/Gore and are on the rise again thanks to the Fascist FunDumbMentalists in power now. And there is also statistical evidence from another place, as noted by Edgewise—The Netherlands:

‘Contrary to common belief, legalization of abortion does not necessarily increase abortion rates. The Netherlands, for example, has a non-restrictive abortion law, widely accessible contraceptives and free abortion services, and the lowest abortion rate in the world: 5.5 abortions per 1,000 women of reproductive age per year. Barbados, Canada, Tunisia and Turkey have all changed abortion laws to allow for greater access to legal abortion without increasing abortion rates.’

Again, safe, legal and rare = lowest abortion rates in the world. But there’s more to it than that, of course, as he notes:

‘By the way, the Netherlands has universal free prenatal, birthing, and child health care, along with subsidized daycare and a few others measures to increase the viability of alternatives to abortion.’

As usual, human issues are rarely black-and-white, cut-and-dried. Life is simply more complex that ‘Just Say No.’