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The abortion debate is raging in America. The opposing sides in the debate each strongly believe they are right. The pro-choice supporters see a woman's right to choose as central to the debate. The life of the baby is the most important concern of the pro-life advocates. Very little middle ground exists on the issue of abortion. Abortion is murder and should be illegal except in instances when the mother's life is endangered by the pregnancy.
Abortion is murder. The embryo is a person from the moment of conception. According to Shettles, "Scientists identify the first moment of human life as that instant when a sperm cell unites with an ovum or egg cell" (18). Most pro-choice supporters do not believe the fetus is a person until the first or second trimester. Pro-choice people do not think abortion is murder because they consider the aborted fetus a mass or cells or tissue (Shettles 20). Abortion is the taking of innocent human life, which is wrong under virtually any circumstances. An unborn baby is more than potential life. An unborn baby is meaningful human life that should not be considered expendable. After conception, no event occurs in the development of the fetus that indicates a change in the fetus from not being human to becoming one (Foster 33). Human life begins with conception. A middle-aged person, a teenager, and an unborn baby are all in stages of human life. Killing the unborn baby is no more justifiable than killing the two other people. Abortion is a practice that should be prohibited by law because it basically amounts to murder.
An unborn baby's right to life should have priority over a woman's right to choose. No woman or man should have the power to decide if a baby is allowed to live. Pro-choice advocates believe women's rights are being jeopardized when the right to an abortion is taken away. The pro-choice camp fails to take into account that the baby has a right to life. A woman's rights over her body do not give her the right to an abortion (Schwarz 113). If a woman has rights over her body, then the unborn baby has those rights too. The child has the right not to be killed. The appeal to a woman's right over her body as a justification for abortion backfires because the right must also be extended to the child (Schwarz 123).
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Abortion should not be allowed because it is immoral. Foster states that "There is no morally relevant difference between deliberately killing a human being who has been born and deliberately killing a human being who is still inside his mother" (32). Abortion has become morally acceptable to some simply because it is currently legal. Legality does not necessarily imply morality. Slavery was once legal in the United States, even though it clearly was not moral. The taking of an innocent, defenseless human life is unacceptable and morally wrong. Killing innocent people is immoral and illegal in the United States; therefore, to be consistent, abortion should also be illegal. The moral aspects of abortion are clear. It is time for society to truly consider what it is doing to other humans.
Abortion is a horrible atrocity that should be illegal unless the mother's life is endangered by the pregnancy. Unborn babies need to be recognized as persons. The right to life that everyone takes for granted should be extended to the unborn. As long as the law reflects the pro-choice view, unborn babies will continue to be murdered. The laws need to be changed; babies' lives are depending on it.
Foster, J. "Personhood And the Ethics of Abortion." Abortion And the Sanctity of Human Life. Ed. J.H. Channer. Cape Town: Oxford University Press, 1985. 31-53.
Schwarz, Stephen. The Moral Question of Abortion. Chicago: Loyola University Press, 1990.
Shettles, Landrum, and David Rorvik. "Human Life Begins At Conception." Abortion- Opposing Viewpoints. Ed. Bonnie Szumski. St. Paul: Greenhaven Press, 1986. 16-22.