CHICAGO – A recent five-year research study has revealed that an overwhelming majority of biologists from 1,058 academic institutions confirm that “a human’s life begins at fertilization.”
Steven Jacobs was a University of Chicago Ph.D. candidate who recently successfully defended his dissertation, “Balancing Abortion Rights and Fetal Rights: A Mixed Methods Mediation of the U.S. Abortion Debate.” For his research, Jacobs recruited 5,502 academic biologists to participate in his thesis study, “Biologists’ Consensus on ‘When Life Begins.’” The biologists identified themselves as “very pro-choice, very pro-life, very liberal, very conservative, strong Democrats and strong Republicans.”
After five years, the research showed that 95 percent (5212 out of 5502) of the biologists affirmed the biological view that a human’s life begins at fertilization, revealing that biology professors in American academia overwhelmingly agree with this pro-life position.
During the survey, Jacobs asked the biologists to agree or disagree with two “implicit statements:”
1) “The end product of mammalian fertilization is a fertilized egg (‘zygote’), a new mammalian organism in the first stage of its species’ life cycle with its species’ genome.”
– Approximately 90 percent agreed the development of a mammal begins at the moment of fertilization.
2) “The development of a mammal begins with fertilization, a process by which the spermatozoon from the male and the oocyte from the female unite to give rise to a new organism, the zygote.”
– More than 75 percent agreed that fertilization marks the beginning of a human’s life.
Then the participants were given an open-ended essay question and asked to answer, “from a biological perspective,” the question “When does a human’s life begin?”
– Ninety percent of biologists who described themselves as “very pro-life” said at the moment of fertilization; Almost 75 percent of those who called themselves “pro-choice,” and approximately 60 percent of those who identified themselves as “very pro-choice,” answered the same.
When Jacobs began his research about the American abortion debate for a qualitative research class, he surveyed 2,899 American adults and discovered that a large majority of respondents believe that the question “When does a human’s life begin?” is important to the discussion. The poll also revealed that 81 percent of respondents, including a larger share of pro-abortion individuals, “selected biologists as the group most qualified to determine when a human’s life begins.”
Jacobs’ research also suggests that 83 percent of “pro-choice” participants surveyed believe that support for legal abortion would decrease “if it became common knowledge that fetuses are biological humans at fertilization.”
“Despite how much politicians try to use euphemisms to deny it, every human life begins at conception, and thousands of biologists now confirm this truth,” said Mat Staver, Founder Chairman of Liberty Counsel. “It should go without saying that every unborn and born baby has value, no matter the stage or circumstances.”