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American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly

Volume 90, Issue 4, Fall 2016

Samuel Kahn
Pages 583-620
DOI: 10.5840/acpq2016915100

Reconsidering the Donohue-Levitt Hypothesis

According to the Donohue-Levitt hypothesis, the legalization of abortion in the United States in the 1970s explains some of the decrease in crime in the 1990s. In this paper, I challenge this hypothesis. First, I argue against the intermediate mechanisms whereby abortion in the 1970s is supposed to cause a decrease in crime in the 1990s. Second, I argue against the correlations that support this causal relationship.

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