A survey conducted on 11,044 Americans and released last Friday showed that white Evangelicals lead religious groups in opposing abortion.
The Christian Post reported that Pew Research conducted the survey from March 7 to 13 to check on American attitudes towards abortion. While the National Catholic Register highlighted that the said survey revealed that religiosity does not guarantee opposition to abortion.
White Evangelicals' Pro-Life Attitude
According to the Pew Research survey, 73% of white Evangelicals agree that abortion should be illegal with only 21% agreeing to a complete ban on abortion and 5% affirming their desire that the procedure is made legal in all cases. Some white Evangelicals or 19% expressed their desire that abortion remains mostly legal.
White Evangelicals are also the leading religious group that affirmed life begins at conception. A majority of white Evangelicals or 86% believe "extremely well" or "somewhat well" that a fetus is a person with rights.
Black Protestants, on the other hand, dominantly support abortion despite being considered a truly devout Christian group. The survey showed that 66% of Black Protestants agree that abortion should be legal in all or most cases and only 23% totally disagree with it. A few Black Protestants or 38% believe that conception is the beginning of human life.
Pew Research Senior Researcher Besheer Mohamed pointed out that even though both Black Americans and White Evangelicals are highly religious groups, "their views on abortion are very different."
Despite the constant teaching of U.S. bishops on abortion, a majority of Catholics or 56% said that abortion should be legal in all or most cases, 13% of Catholics said abortion should be legal in all cases, and 10% wish a complete ban be imposed on it.
Religious Groups Agree On One Abortion Exception
Almost half of American Catholics or 44% expressed being extremely confident that life begins at conception. Religion News Service News Analyst Rev. Thomas Reese disclosed that most Catholics do not listen to the bishops, causing the latter to fail in their effort of convincing them of the evil of abortion.
The survey also gathered the opinion of religious "nones" on the issue and most were supportive of legalizing abortion. There are eight in 10 nones who said abortion should be legal in most or all cases. Of the said group, atheists were the only ones who agree that abortion should be legalized with no exceptions in most cases. The Pew Research study, however, did not provide information on the stand of Jews and Muslims on abortion.
All religious groups agree to the exception to make abortion legal when it becomes life or health-threatening to a woman. This involves 51% of White Evangelicals, 69% of Catholics, 71% of Black Protestants, 77% of white mainline Protestants, and 87% of nones.
Meanwhile, the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding released the results of a similar poll. The study showed that 75% of American Jews along with 56% of American Muslims agree that abortion should remain legal.
An SSRS survey, which was conducted on 2,159 respondents including 807 Muslims, revealed that younger Muslims were more supportive of abortion being legal in most cases than their elders aged 50 and above.