Babies are expensive. And in the midst of what is turning out to be our worst economic crisis since the Great Depression, fewer people are choosing to have them.
As we previously reported, vasectomies have been on the upswing—partly because, as noted above, babies aren't cheap; but also, it is safe to presume, because men who are lucky enough to have jobs with benefits want to have the procedure done while they're still insured.
Steve Trombley, CEO of Planned Parenthood of Illinois told the AP that in January that his clinics performed "an all-time high number of abortions, many of them motivated by the women's economic worries."
At the same time, St. Louis-area Planned Parenthood clinics have experienced a 7 percent increase in abortions from a year ago (ending a stretch in which the numbers were dwindling) and calls to the National Network of Abortion Funds, which helps women in need pay for abortions, have quadrupled from a year ago.
The AP piece makes clear that not all of these pregnancies were unwanted. One woman, who walked an hour to the abortion clinic to save on bus fair, just couldn't afford a fourth child after her boyfriend's recent job loss. Another woman's husband was self-employed with a health insurance policy so limited, that it didn't cover maternal care.
As our president, Barack Obama, said over the weekend to Notre Dame's graduating class, abortion "is a heart-wrenching decision for any woman to make. So let's work together to reduce the number of women seeking abortions by reducing unintended pregnancies, and making adoption more available, and providing support and care to women who do carry their child to term."
Well said, Mister President. But we can't help but think that no amount of pre-natal care will matter until we have jobs again.