A recent study on the use of abortion victim photography in pro-life outreach suggests that instead of damaging public opinion of the pro-life movement and thereby impeding the accomplishment of pro-life strategies, the images in fact change hearts and minds.
“Ultimately, opponents’ claims that abortion victim images are ineffective at changing public opinion are unsupported, as was the claim that this strategy is counterproductive or irreconcilable with other strategies,” states Dr. Jacqueline C. Harvey, a political science professor at Tarleton State University in Texas and lead researcher of the project, in an executive summary.
The study titled A Statistical Analysis on the Effectiveness of Abortion Victim Photography in Pro-life Activism was commissioned by the Canadian Centre for Bio-Ethical Reform (CCBR). The CCBR developed a survey — administered by the independent company Blue Direct — which targeted the population of geographic areas in which CCBR campaigns had been run using abortion victim photography. With a sample size of more than 1,700 respondents, the survey results are sufficient to gauge public opinion within a five-point margin, the study claims.
The survey results found that those who had seen the photos of aborted babies had a “statistically significant shift in pro-life worldview, a greater negative perception of abortion, a decreased degree of permissiveness and liberalism towards abortion law, and a significant gain in pro-life political views after seeing abortion victim imagery.”
The study found that:
- 90 percent of respondents said that seeing the images increased their negative feelings toward abortion.
- Those identifying as completely pro-life increased by nearly 30 percent following the campaign.
Sign up for our free e-mail list to see future vaticancatholic.com videos and articles.