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Testing Father Corapi’s Imminent Destruction Abortion Prediction

Four months ago, Catholic priest and religious radio personality John Corapi made a dire prediction about the future of pro-choice America:

“If we do not soon stop the genocide of abortion in the United States, we shall run the course of all those that prove by their actions that they are enemies of God—total collapse, economic, social, and national.”

Wow! Look out, America, if Father Corapi is right. But is he right? If it is true that “all those that prove by their actions that they are enemies of God” suffer “total collapse, economic, social and national,” and if Father Corapi is right that abortion is a genocidal abomination in God’s eyes, then at the very least those places in which abortion is more free and unfettered should be doing worse socially and economically, while those places in which abortion is more restricted should be farther from collapse.

If, on the other hand, God is wholly unconcerned with abortion restrictions, or God actively dislikes restrictions on women’s bodily liberty, or God does not exist as an intervening deity, then we won’t find the pattern that Father Corapi uses his supernatural authority (and worldly broadcast power) to proclaim.

Let’s go ahead and test Corapi’s abortion prediction empirically. Here is a map of states according to the number of legal restrictions they place on abortion (information courtesy of Lawserver):

Distribution of three abortion restrictions across the laws of the 50 states of the the United States, 2009

The red states on this map place the most restrictions on abortion, and according to Corapi’s description of the world they should be furthest from economic and social collapse. The blue states, which place none of these three restrictions on abortion, should be closest to economic and social collapse.

My indication of economic collapse in the fifty states is pretty straightforward: the percent of families below the poverty level in each state. Here’s a map of those values for 2006, the most recent year for which data is available from the Statistical Abstract of the United States:

Percent of Families in Poverty by State in the USA, 2006

One measure of social collapse is the dissolution of the family unit through divorce. Here is a map of the divorce rate per 1,000 people in 2007 (also the most recent year available through the Statistical Abstract) for the various states:

Divorce Rate across the 50 states, 2007

(those states in white did not report divorce data in 2007.)

Another indication of social collapse is the commission of violent crime. Here’s a map of violent crime rates (per 100,000 people) in 2006 (yep, the most recently available year of data from the Statistical Abstract):

USA Violent Crime Rate by State, 2006

And here is the numerical relationship between abortion restrictiveness and these measures of collapse:

Mean % of families in poverty:
States with no abortion restrictions: 8.2%
States with 1 abortion restriction: 9.6%
States with 2 abortion restrictions: 9.0%
States with 3 abortion restrictions: 10.1%

Mean divorce rate per 1,000 people:
States with no abortion restrictions: 4.2
States with 1 abortion restriction: 3.7
States with 2 abortion restrictions: 4.1
States with 3 abortion restrictions: 3.5

Violent crime rate per 100,000 people:
States with no abortion restrictions: 410.0
States with 1 abortion restriction: 406.5
States with 2 abortion restrictions: 457.9
States with 3 abortion restrictions: 348.3

The highest rate of economic collapse occurs in the set of states with the most restrictive abortion laws, contradicting Father Corapi’s pronouncement that abortion rights lead to economic collapse. While the divorce rate is lowest in the most restrictive abortion states, next lowest are states with only one abortion restriction on the books. And the violent crime rate peaks in states with 2 abortion restrictions, with crime much lower in more restrictive and less restrictive states.

To my eye, no consistent relationship between the restrictiveness of abortion laws and social collapse exists. If Father Corapi is interested in observable reality, he’s advised to stop making the claim. If Corapi continues to make such pronouncements, it should be taken as a sign that he’s not interested in observable reality.

37 comments to Testing Father Corapi’s Imminent Destruction Abortion Prediction

  • lepelerin

    Looks like you can make statistics say whatever you want them to do say. How about not limiting yourself to comparing States but to comparing counties, cities, countries, hemispheres. There’s no end to twisting statistics. However history does not lie, time will tell. Is Fr. Corapi a prophet? I don’t think so. He’s using some common sense, IMO.

    • Jim

      Some “common sense” that doesn’t match “reality.”

      No, you can’t make statistics say whatever you want them to say. You can’t make this state-level data line up with John Corapi’s depiction of the order of the universe.

      If you want to go ahead and compare counties, cities, countries and hemispheres, go right ahead. You will likely find the similar lack of confirmation for Father Corapi’s contenntion.

    • Horatio

      Wow, you’re right, lepelerin. I CAN make statistics say whatever I want them to “do say”. For example, 100 percent of Americans agree that you’re an idiot.

      See?

      Ooops, I forgot. I can make statistics say whatever I want them to “do say” just so long as I make them up. Jim didn’t make these statistics up. See the difference, or do I need to “do say” another example for you?

      • Anonymous

        Actually, it is clear appropriate statistics were not used on this data (I am a corporate statistician). Because in fact if they were, it would show ‘no significant difference’, neither proving nor disproving the theory. However, I would like to comment on this theory. Fr. Corapi did not indicate that the social collapse and economic ruin resulting from abortions would occur on a state-by-state basis. He was referring to the systemic collapse of entire groups that would support abortion. This is not separated from reality: allowing abortion leads quite naturally to a devaluing of life in general, which means the moral weight felt by those who murder, say, an adult, is lessened as society loosens its’ belief of the preciousness of human life.

        • Jim

          If you really are a “corporate statistician,” you appear to be a lousy one, and a careless reader to boot.

          The post concludes: “no consistent relationship between the restrictiveness of abortion laws and social collapse exists,” which is another way of saying “no significant difference.” If no significant difference exists between the restrictiveness of abortion laws and indicators of social collapse (a circumstance you acknowledge) then any elementary statistical textbook will tell you this would lead to the REJECTION of a hypothesis (like Corapi’s hypothesis) that predicts the existence of a significant relationship between the variables.

          For a “corporate statistician” you also throw around your theoretical terms very loosely, without operationalization. What do you mean by “entire group”? Do you mean, say, a nation? If so, then sorry, chum: doing a cross-national comparison also leads to a rejection of the Corapi hypothesis. Or do you mean “social category,” such as the set of people who favor the legalization of abortion? If so, then you’re wrong on that count, too.

          A quick trip to the General Social Survey reveals that those who answer “Yes” to the question “Please tell me whether you think it should be possible for a pregnant woman to obtain a legal abortion if the woman wants it for any reason?” have higher income, are more likely to report being “very happy” or “pretty happy,” are no more or less likely to indicate that their marriages are “very happy” or “pretty happy”, are more likely to report that their life is “exciting” (as opposed to “routine” or “dull”), and are less likely to agree with the statement “You’re left out of things going on around you.” In short, people who believe it should be possible for a pregnant women to obtain a legal abortion report having a better time of it than those who don’t. All of those relationships I just described are statistically significant, by the way, and I’m sure you know what I mean by that.

    • InGod'slove

      Amen to you! Look at the countries where abortion is huge in number and look at the headlines today. Father Corapi is right. As long as we do not respect our own flesh and blood and stop the violence within our own bodies with abortion, we will never find peace in this world, much less our own home.

  • lepelerin

    I won’t do the analysis because I’m not a nerd and because I wouldn’t trust the results of my analysis.

    I don’t hope for “total collapse”. Hey, I got 4 little ones to raise.

    I’m banking on gold to save my family from total economic collapse. Maybe I’ll plant some vegetables my kids won’t eat!

    Fr. Corapi rocks. Stay tuned.

    • Horatio

      If you don’t even trust yourself to analyze simple facts correctly, why should we believe your assertion that “Fr. Corapi rocks”, lepelerin?

      You ought to stop and reflect that your religious position leads you to call fact-based analysis something only a “nerd” would do.

  • HareTrinity

    It’s true that statistics can be twisted to an extent, but I can’t see what twisting you’re accusing this article of.

    What do you suggest is the problem here? Are divorce rates not a good measure of social collapse for you?

    That’s an arguable point but I get the feeling it’s not the one you mean.

    For example, if you CANNOT get your kids to eat ANY vegetables you plant, then I may question your parenting skills, but maybe I should be questioning your gardening skills instead. Not many want to eat mouldy seeds.

    Statistics are a good way to compare large amounts of information. Tell us what we should be looking at and one of us at Irregular Times will have a look for you like the “nerds” we are.

  • lepelerin

    My problem with your analysis is your comparing of states. Until now, legal abortion is the law of the land, yes up until 9 months in all 50 states. Some states have waiting periods, parental notification laws… but still it’s a women’s right to choose to end the life of their child, in every state. It’s the law of the land so I would test Fr. Corapi’s warnings, with the country as a whole, not by state.

    As for my kids not eating vegetables, you may question my parenting skills. My wife doesn’t like vegetables so my kids don’t have to eat them. I guess if they were sick I would be more concerned.

    Maybe you could analize if because of abortion, people have become more spoiled. If they are more spoiled, do they save less money: individuals, families, government, and want instant gratification, and is that what got us into this financial mess. My 2 cents

  • Georgia

    Expand your comparisons – Fr. Corapi was not talking about states, but civilizations. History shows that when civilizations degenerate morally, the strong and powerful begin to victimize the weak and defenseless. Repeatedly, we have seen wicked cultures killing the weak, the elderly, the young, and the unborn. In the OT evil Israelites sacrificed their babies to the pagan god Baal. The Carthaginans burned thousands of babies to their god Moloch. Many of these infants – offered under the pretext of religious worship – were socially undersirable: handicapped or born out of wedlock. When Rome degenerated morally, Romans began to “expose” unwanted babies. Infants were taken out to the wilderness at night and left to be frozen or eaten by wild animals. The fortunate ones would be rescued and raised by Christians. Throughout history, wicked societies have committed atrocities against babies. Many people today think we have legal abortion because we are enlightened and progressive, and we have advanced medicine. Just like previous wicked civilizations, we sanction abortion because we have degenerated morally. It’s an old story just for different gods. We sacrifice babies for the gods of money, convenience, a new car, a new boat etc. etc. Father Corapi is right on.

    • Jim

      I love it. Now, Corapi wasn’t talking about states, because that didn’t match reality, and he wasn’t talking about countries, because that didn’t match reality, so now he’s talking about… “civilizations,” which are… hm, conveniently abstract and for which statistics aren’t collected.

      But fine, I can even go there on your terms, Georgia. You cite the Bible in your examples of “moral degeneration,” and you name a standard for “moral degeneration”: “wicked cultures killing the weak, the elderly, the young, and the unborn.”

      But while you mention the Old Testament examples of Baal worshipers and Moloch worshipers, you don’t mention worshipers of the Hebrew god in your list of “wicked cultures killing the weak, the elderly, the young and the unborn.” Which is the funniest thing, because worshipers of the Hebrew god do a whole lot of “killing the weak, the elderly, the young and the unborn” in the Old Testament. Joshua 6:12-24 is a good start. But wait, in the Old Testament your God is BEHIND all that business of “killing the weak, the elderly, the young and the unborn.” And in Joshua 6, just one of many examples, God REWARDS his chosen people for “killing the weak, the elderly, the young and the unborn.”

      I can see it coming: oh, that’s the Old Testament, the Old Testament doesn’t matter. Then why did you just cite the Old Testament for examples of what God does to “wicked cultures”?

  • JPK

    Jim,
    The History of the world and the OT is replete with the punishment of both the innocent and guilty alike.

  • VVP

    Georgia, I couldn’t agree with you more. It seems that the more degenerate we become the more we cowardly victimize those who cannot defend themselves. We can say things like “only a woman can decide to kill her own baby” without even flinching.Human embryos can be sacrificed at the altar of science because science is always right and morality is just religious psicho-bubble.Never mind that science hasn’t even been able to find a cure for the common cold in 2009 years!
    Comparing statistics is idle (and silly) speculation–the truth is that God will not stand by and watch us destroy His precious children forever.Father Corapi is right.

  • bill read

    Relevance! The study provided, though statistically sound, does not measure what Corapi is saying. His claim is that as a nation that kills babies, the nation will suffer divine consequences. State by state analysis cannot falsify or verify Corapi’s observation. Only time will tell. Further, if “bad stuff” does happen, abortion proponents will never admit to a causal relationship anyway.

  • Gary

    What does your “statistics” reveal about the following news article which is presented here in part:

    Family of Irving ‘Bud’ Feldkamp, Owner of the Nation’s Largest Privately Owned Abortion Chain, Dies in Montana Plane Crash
    Contact: Gingi Edmonds, http://www.gingiedmonds.com, 559-772-7911

    MEDIA ADVISORY, Mar. 24 /Christian Newswire/ — Some of you may have seen the major news story of the private plane that crashed into a Montana cemetery, killing 7 children and 7 adults.

    But what the news sources fail to mention is that the Catholic Holy Cross Cemetery owned by Resurrection Cemetery Association in Butte – contains a memorial for local residents to pray the rosary, at the ‘Tomb of the Unborn’. This memorial, located a short distance west of the church, was erected as a dedication to all babies who have died because of abortion.

  • Mark

    Jim,
    You obviously went to a lot of trouble in compiling your stats on states (abortion, crime etc….) But I think you may be a bit shortsighted in your logic. Father Corapi’s comments were not intended to be taken to the state level. I believe too that he was talking about the country as a group. Using your logic it would make sense for one who is pro-life to move out of a state which is more liberal in that area… just to avoid the economic downturn. You can beleive what you believe though, it is not me or any other person that you have to answer to !

  • Mari

    Dear Jim,
    Your whole argument is totally sophistic. In response to a rather broad statement about the results of immoral behavior, you have created your own arbitrary statistical analysis criteria by introducing a “test” and have named it as if that was some official scientific/empirical act: “The Corapi Hypothesis”. What is really bothering you? The fact that someone believes that behavior has consequences? One day when the human race has matured beyond instant gratification and has absorbed the knowledge that is available through technological and scientific advances (if we survive that long), rational persons will agree that abortion was a barbaric and destructive practice that cheapened and deprived women of their rights to be responsible and compassionate persons capable of making choices that are both truly informed and fully human. And yes, I am a woman. Do not champion abortion as “a woman’s choice”. That is deceptive and manipulative and condescending.

    • Jim

      The fact that some guy says something’s going to happen, and the fact that it hasn’t happened, and the fact that despite that people take this crank seriously. That chaps my ass right there, Mari.

  • ed

    jim,

    it is quite clear that corapi is speaking of cultures or civilizations or nations, and not minute details of subdivisions such as states.
    it is fine to go ahead and tesat those areas, however, just to see the results.
    i am a historian and the collapse of societies follows the degeneration of morals. corapi is correct on this without question. so the question then becomes based on which morals EXACTLY is it that societies wellbeing rests ??
    for Christians, the new testament is the rule, and the old testament was under a different pretext; so while it may provide some history and some guidance, the old testament does not contain the proper method for evaluating Christian action; the new testament does with its “new law I give unto you, to love your neighbor as yourself”.
    the golden rule becomes the “ruler” by which we as people are measured.
    now, historically speaking, when you see the application of this rule in a society, that society prospers across the board; when you do not see this rule followed, you see a society that is predatory and that eventually suffers what can only be termed complete ruin.
    one must assume that a baby does not want to be murdered in the womb– would you want to be murdered in the womb ?? would you have wanted that for your daughter or your grandmother ?? not likely. so here we have the answer to the “justice” question.
    so… where this brings us is the analysis of history. history shows us that where evil is rampant and people are selfish— the certain end is collapse for the society.
    abortion and other crimes against the defenseless are just one indicator— albeit historically they are a late term indicator of the slide in the direction of collapse.
    widespread acceptance of homosexuality is another.
    i am a non-practicing protestant; however, if you really want to understand to correlation of these things to the bigger picture; read the encyclical humanae vitae on the official vatican website.
    the question becomes, again, will we “do unto others what we want done unto ourselves”?
    when we become CONSUMED with ONLY our own gratification in the immediate sense as a people– we are headed for CERTAIN disaster(as you will notice in the financial area).
    whether you consider it of a Divine nature or purely a result of “survival of the fittest” doesnt matter; the result will be the same.
    the gratuitously hedonistic society will easily be decimated and over-run by the disciplined society even if it doesnt collapse first of its own accord.
    this is simple historical fact. personally i believe this is the result of an intelligent design— as did ben franklin and the rest of our founders. so, if you think that corapi is a quack, then do not hesitate to add the following quacks to your list: benjamin franklin, george washinton, samuel adams, thomas jefferson, patrick henry, etc.
    they all agreed with corapi EXPLICITLY in that they knew that our countrys future hinged on the justice of our actions before the “just God that rules over the destinies of nations”(from henrys “give me liberty or give me death” speech).
    one would have a hard time defending abortion as birth control as being a more responsible, humane, and “just” activity then sexual responsibility. in other words, dont have irresponsible sex, and if you do choose to have irresponsible sex, then at least recognize it as such and admit that murder is not the best way to make up for your irresponsibility.
    historically, there is ABSOLUTELY a connection between “reasonless” and irresponbsible behavior by entire citizenrys and the collapse of their particular ruling institutions.
    again, you can claim that it is not Divine justice; but it is justice all the same.
    what goes around comes around.
    live by the sword die by the sword.
    the founders understood this, corapi understands this, and you would be doing yourself a favor to give careful consideration to a postition, before accpeting it and promulgating it, that flys in the face of both the pope and ALL of the primary american founders— i would surely hesitate myself to put my solitary intellect up against so many inspired and truly genius intellects as these.
    you are claiming some very high ground for your personal understanding and capabilities to directly challenge the conclusions and accepted “truisms” of so many “monsters(in the huge sense of the word) of history and of intellect” and accomplishment.
    … and therefore i would propose that they are right and that you are wrong, and that therefore corapi is right. corapis position aligns with BRILLIANT men of unquestionable genius and it also aligns with historical fact, minute statistical nuances and deviations notwithstanding.
    sincerely, jeff

  • j. yates

    god will punish all of us because of the killing of the innocent;

    • Wait a minute. Do you mean the innocent people who die because they don’t have access to health care? Do you mean the innocents who are killed by U.S. bombs in Iraq and Afghanistan? Do you meant the innocents who die because of air pollution related to coal-powered electrical plants and automobiles?

      There are so many innocents being killed, it’s hard to know which ones you’re talking about.

      • Anonymous

        Finally, someone is making sense in all this. Who says one life is more important than another. These “prolife” folks need to call themselves “probirth” because the lives of millions are being ignored. Lack of health care is one of the major signs of moral decay in our country. Also, what they are saying about the health care bill and funding of abortion is not true. They also talk about the bill interfering with the conscience of health care workers. I am a health care professional and know that isn’t true. I’m beginning to believe as are others that a certain segment of Catholics ARE FIRMLY COMMITTED to one political party. Just listen to EWTN. How do they get tax exempt status? The issue of abortion is just a political “hot button” It’s comparable to the “preachings” of Rush Limbaugh. So many believe him because they don’t know any better. Many Catholics who listen to Fr Corapi and EWTN don’t know any better, but I can’t believe that is true for many.
        Janet Johnson

  • Barbara

    Thank you Jim for this article! This has sparked many interesting, intellegant responses. Jeff, you comentary especially was very inspiring to me. So much truth you have spoken! As a grandmother, I too, would love see the world a become a better place. I wholeheartly agree with you.
    Also, lepelrin, I also think Father Corapi ‘rocks’! :)
    Barbara

  • Phil

    Please stop being trivial. If you believe in God who created us all, how can you think that taking life of any kind is ok. With the technology we now have and photos of very early fetus’ in the womb, do you not think this is taking life? Shame on you. Your all lost in your own finite mind and feel the need to control your world. Be a good person, live, laugh, love, and pray that the Bible is true and there is greatness that awaits. Isn’t it easier to eat cookies than veggies, easier to watch the game than attend mass, all easy choices leave you feeling shallow. Take the hard road now and feel great later. Take the life of NOTHING as all lifeis precious.

    • Flookie

      If you believe in God who created us all, how can you think that taking life of any kind is ok? Why don’t you ask all the Christian priests serving in the military?

  • Phil

    You ask them. I won’t waste my time. Priests who enlist what a joke. Like being a teacher and going home to kill babies for fun. Doesn’t make sense. Whatever, believe what you want. The bible is vry clear. Enjoy burning and gnashing your teeth.

  • veronica

    Yes,Father Corapi is right about abortion. We are heading for World War 3 because of abortion.Abortion is the main factor for all present destruction.You cannot go against GODS Commandments,and think all will go well.

  • Jamie

    Doesn’t ‘reproductive rights’ lead to more ‘medical waste’?

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