The debate "Abortion should be legal" was started by
March 20, 2015, 12:42 am.
By the way, debateer is disagreeing with this statement.
37 people are on the agree side of this discussion, while 34 people are on the disagree side.
That might be enough to see the common perception.
It looks like most of the people in this community are on the agreeing side of this statement.
Sosocratese posted 8 arguments, PsychDave posted 11 arguments, Getmurked posted 1 argument, Devin posted 1 argument, Cormi98 posted 1 argument to the agreers part.
molly314 posted 1 argument, Jake posted 17 arguments, Sosocratese posted 2 arguments, Mrcmck posted 2 arguments to the disagreers part.
danielle, Hjkp98, mdavis1309, Sosocratese, SiGuy27, CX_LD_Ashley, PsychDave, Egert_Clueless, Devinc25, Getmurked, SmileCookie, megantatertot, Devin, DereckC, Cormi98, Bodaciouslady16, sickboyblonde, eric1943, Alex11113, l2lll, transfanboy and 16 visitors agree.
debateer, Mrcmck, molly314, Jake, Naudious, milimehta068, AdamChase, HankPalmer, wmd, PathwayHomeFan, cocobb, Kirito, frozen_emily, asaru, kimmy92, ArsonLarson, sdiop, SwaggerPoptart, blakelovesjesus and 15 visitors disagree.
@mrcmck people don't always choose to become pregnant. Birth control methods aren't 100% effective. Condoms break, women forget to take the pill, people make silly choices when they are intoxicated, etc... It comes down to who's right takes priority, the woman's right to choose whether or not to donate her body for the next 9 months or the right if a non-sentient entity to occupy her body so that it may become a person.
So I can accept your belief that abortion as a form of birth control is unethical. What about in the case of rape? Asking the rapist to use a condom is unlikely to be effective. Is it immoral to have an abortion in the case of rape victims?
Being a parent.. you should have a plans about the family .. Whats the reason why should abortion should be legal!?
Making a baby then abort it .. ? A poor mind is doing it ! Use condoms when you dont want to have a baby..
Abortion should be legal? Then you are a killer if youll do that! Mind first before anything else.
I wonder if some people here had more empathy would they think the same way.
If they placed themselves in the shoes of a young girl that was raped and impregnated, how would they truly respond.
I imagine that most of them would not want to have the child, as it would be a reminder of their horrible experience.
People should have more empathy. There shouldn't even be an argument again abortion being legal.
@mrcmck why should we conform to religious laws? If that was the case then adultery should be illegal as should other religion. Eating shrimp, working on the sabbath, being gay, sex before marriage, etc... Should all be illegal by your reasoning. Not only that, but we should be killing adulterers, killing children who disobey their parents, etc.... Using religion to justify law is poor reasoning for legislation.
Abortion should be legal ...
We all know that killing people especially babies is a very wrong idea .. Thus , this is disobeying the 10 commandments of our God and also it can affect the health of a mother of the child.
A child has a right to live .
I was not equating a baby with aids, I was illustrating that specifically in the case of rape, there was no choice made, so saying that the life altering consequences are merely inconvenient for the victim is wrong.
@jake if you're using a toddler as an argument for personhood, then it doesn't work for a fetus since the capacities are different. So it's an argument of false analogy.
Human and capable of living a meaningful life doesn't apply to a fetus since it can't live a meaningful life at this stage of its development. And again, what constitutes human? You haven't provided a definition of human/person. You have asserted that a fetus is a human without providing a working definition or argument for it, so it's a proof by assertion fallacy.
What points were misrepresented? And what arguments were being ignored? I feel like I addressed each one, even labeling them. You never retorted, and thus the last rebuttal stands... Why would I accept your arguments if you never addressed my counterpoints? And thus why should I keep them in mind if you couldn't defend them?
There's no point in doing this anymore. I feel I have provided "framework" for my arguments but everyone seems to misinterpret them.
The toddler comparison was made in regards to personhood, not interest in life.
You seem to have forgotten everything I said earlier as well. If it's human and is capable of living a meaningful life, we have the obligation to protect its right to do so.
I feel I have provided "good reason" to believe what I do but apparently not. I think I'll discontinue my efforts to make any more points as I'm sure they will all be misinterpreted.
@jake im not asking you to prove anything. I'm asking you to provide a framework for your position so it can be argued. You are not doing so. You are simply asserting and expecting that to be taken as an argument. It's a fallacy, an error in logic.
I'm arguing that the fetus has no interest in being alive. A toddler has a vested interest in being alive. It may not be able to express that interest verbally, but it will move a pillow from its face. It will eat if it's hungry and given food.
If you are asserting that humanity arises from genetics, then the problem of allowing brain dead people to die once again arises. You haven't provided a good argument against this if you assert that personhood is a matter of species regardless of function.
I'm only addressing your arguments. Your opinion is irrelevant. If you choose to believe something without any good reason, then that's up to you. However, it makes for a really poor argument in the context of debate and one that doesn't need to be addressed.
That's not the comparison that was being presented either.
Did you just compare a baby to having AIDS?
Actually it could be compared. If someone has sex, and their partner does not tell them that they have an STI (like aids), or if someone is raped and contracts an STI, a crime has been committed. I have yet to meet anyone who would blame the victim, or say that they should not get medical treatment. Someone has forced a terminal illness on them. If there was a cure for aids, they would receive it so that they don't spend the rest of their life dealing with the consequences of being the victim of a crime. If a woman is raped, she should not be forced to deal with consequences she did not choose if there is a way to avoid it.
No, I excluded rape so that the point I was making still made sense. There's no good way to use the case of rape in the same donation argument. You don't force a terminal illness onto someone. That's why the case of rape doesn't make any sense in the comparison and should be excluded altogether.
it should be legal
I'm not sure that you can definitively prove one way or the other that a fetus is a person. I simply choose to believe it because a fetus has human characteristics, has DNA it got from both its mother and father.
If your argument is that personhood arises solely from being a completely individual person, could the same concept be applied to born babies or toddlers. They still dependant on their parents. Should that justify their murder?
You gave already said that rape doesn't matter to you (in that it does not change whether abortion is acceptable) so why do you separate it here? Have you changed your opinion with regards to rape victims?
@jake I only went back to the brain dead thing because your argument of cells constituting life brought me back around to it and allowed me to show you the problem with your argument.
Your constitutional argument rests on a fetus being human but you offer no argument to support that claim and are thus committing the fallacy known as proof by assertion. Your constitutional justification for outlawing abortions only holds if you can prove that a fetus is a person. You'd thus have to provide a logical framework to support that theory. You haven't done so. You have only shown that a fetus has the potential to be a person.
You have already agreed that a fetus doesn't have the capacity for personhood earlier and that the only difference between it and a vegetative parient is the potential for personhood. As I've shown, potential does not need to be considered in a utilitarian argument. Thus it is up to you to either dispel the utilitarian argument or to prove that personhood itself arises from the potential of consciousness.
This is your burden of proof. If you want to use the Constitution as a mechanism for protecting the fetus, you must first show that the fetus is a person, not just a collection of cells with the potential of being a person.
You did not cause a person to have conditions in which they need donations. You did, however, cause a baby to be made (excluding rape). That's why I don't think it's a good comparison.
We've gone over the brain dead shit already. Clearly, neither of us are understanding each other's points.
As for the 21 week thing, my morals tell me we have an obligation to protect them until they are able to think.
I used the Constitution, Socratese. Fetuses are human and if conceived in an American citizen, is entitled to the right to life and the pursuit of happiness.
How not? You know that donating bone marrow could save a life, but you do not donate it because it is painful and inconvenient. Donation of bone marrow wouldn't even do the kind of long term damage that childbirth does to a woman. How do you have the right to tell others to practice what you do not?
@jake in 2011 13.9 abortions were performed for every 1000 women of child bearing age in the US. That's 1.39% of women. That's not a statistically significant portion that would affect the population as a whole. Furthermore the number of abortions being performed has been on a steady decline for years now. (from the CDC website)
Fetuses living argument.
They are living the same way a brain dead patient is living. A collection of cells performing a function. They are not human in the way we describe being human. So again the argument stands that we already actively choose to end the lives of such living entities by choosing to deny them food.
So we're back to the potential for consciousness. This doesn't develop until week 21. Therefore until then, ethically, they are not human from a utilitarian prospective. They have no interest themselves. So you are projecting your interest on them. You keep saying we should see things from the fetus' perspective. However, the fetus has no perspective by utilitarian standards and thus doesn't need to be considered.
If morality is subjective, by what subjective moral framework do you propose that the fetus is endowed with rights and protected from abortions? You are making unsubstantiated claims without providing a framework for your arguments. This is a fallacy known as proof by assertion.
I happen to donate blood often, Dave. But that's beside the point. The comparison doesn't apply well to what we are discussing
If you are unaware that there are many people waiting for bone marrow, organs, and blood, it is through willful ignorance. Go to any hospital and tell them you want to donate a kidney to someone on the waiting list and they will happily find a recipient. I doubt you will do so though because it is much easier to say that someone else has to undergo life altering changes than to do so yourself.
My remarks of inconvenience are not directed at rape victims. They were directed at who I thought we were talking about- the women who get abortions as a way to get out of their own mistake. Inconvenience is not the only motive for all abortions, I make that clear. But for many, that is how I see it.
You didn't make a false assumption, I just feel that it is unwise to begin arguing against a point that someone did not make yet- just for the sake of future discussions.
You are picking and choosing which parts of arguments you want to address, and ignoring context. I would say that not having permanent reminders of what is, hopefully, the most traumatic event in someone's life counts as a bit more than convenience. Putting your life at risk (because there are always risks in pregnancy), experiencing permanent changes to your body, and having scars, all because you were attacked is more than just inconvenient. By trivializing the decision of all women who choose to get an abortion by saying it is only about convenience is not only close-minded, it is deliberately ignorant.
With regards to my interpretation of your arguments, you confirmed that my conclusions were accurate in the same comment you objected to me making them. Why are you objecting to an accurate assessment of your stance? If you can point out where I have overstepped, or where I have attributed an opinion to you that you do not share, I will happily apologize and retract it.
Abortions being performed on such a large scale as they are now, how could they not affect natural selection?
Fetuses don't have just the potential to live. They are living already. I say potential in that they have the potential to live a life that we think of as worth living, if that makes sense. Your comparison with bone marrow is faulty in that abortion is deliberate. You knowingly kill the fetus. If someone presented a two year old that needed help from my body to survive, I would gladly donate. But that's not how that works. Yeah, you could have the potential to save someone with your bodily fluids but that doesn't mean that you would have known about it. That's the difference.
Of course it's a beneficial choice for the mother. But it's not for the fetus. You shouldn't be able to impose your will onto the fetus. You seem to be overlooking everything from the perspective of the fetus.
Youre right, morality is completely subjective.
I disagree with your statement that abortion is constitutional. Everyone person in the US has the right to life and the pursuit of happiness. The only way the Constitution would not apply is if you believe the fetus is not human and in the US.
@jake your teacher did teach you wrong if he/she used darwinism to argue against abortion. Darwinism applies only to populations as a whole. By not making abortions mandatory or even a prevalent form of birth control the human species as a whole is unaffected thus it doesn't affect natural selection.
The potential argument
The potential for life is not enough to force another to carry that burden. We don't force people to donate blood or bone marrow even though it could safe countless lives (including those of children). Why should we force the mother to carry a potential life if we don't place that same burden on the general public? Should we strap you to the table against your will and force you to donate bone marrow if it meant saving a 2 year old?
The decision being wrong argument.
You're not understanding my argument. I'm arguing based on utility that the decision to have an abortion out of one owns free will is right as it produces more good than bad. If you wish to argue that there is an objective morality component to this that abortion violates, then you must first demonstrate that objective morality even exists. That abortion is in and of itself wrong. That the abortion is somehow immoral based on that morality.
The what is "good" question.
Again, I'm arguing based on utility (Google utilitarianism if you don't know what that means). But basically, it is a philosophy that ascribes "rightness" to a decision based on the happiness vs harm it provides. A decision that provides more happiness than harm is therefore a good decision. A decision that causes more harm than happiness is then a wrong/bad decision. I'm basing this on my belief in moral nihilism and that morality is completely subjective. However, nihilism is not the most fair way to argue, so I'm giving you a bit more of a framework which to argue against.
As far as your constitutional question, that was answered by SCOTUS in Roe vs Wade. You may not agree with their decision, however being that legally they are charged with interpreting the constitutional compliance of our laws, it is legally a matter of fact that abortion is constitutionally OK.
Murder of an unborn child trumps having scars.
What else is abortion about? It's completely about the mother's convenience in regards to her own life. Not carrying a baby to term is convenient. Not having scars is convenient. Not having to deal with putting it up for adoption is convenient. Not taking care of the baby is convenient.
You were not interpreting my argument because I never presented one on that topic until now.
If you feel that forcing a woman to have permanent reminders of being raped is not inhumane, I would like to hear the rational.
I'm not putting words in your mouth, I am interpreting your arguments, and apparently doing so accurately.
And finally, where are you getting the idea that abortion is about convenience?
you still fail to see it from anyone elses perspective but your own. from a standard point of view,is it wrong? yes, but in certain conditions, it is the better option. rape cases, a case where the baby cannot grow up living a normal life, if the mother is in danger,. in all these cases it should be up to the women to decide, and if she decides to kill it, then that is her decision, and no one else should be able to make a decision for someone else when it is that serious. we aim high, to protect life on this planet, and if theres danger, we will do our best to preserve life, but if there is danger the best.route is the safest one. not giving women that option is absurd. i encourage you to go out and ask a women in your life what she would do, and how she would feel given my three scenarios.
Pregnancy has permanent damage to a woman's body. Death also tends to do a number on a fetus' body. I wish we wouldn't put words into each others' mouths because I didn't say the potential is more important. I'm saying that the fetus' life is far more important than the mother's convenience.
As for rape, you never actually asked me for my opinion on the matter. Although I do believe abortion is wrong even in the case of rape. Only a Nazi would punish a child for his father's wrongdoings.
How did we get to the point where pregnancy is "inhumane" and "cruel"? I hate the argument that a woman should have that decision over her body. She should not have that decision if it infringes on the rights of others (the fetus).
I still don't believe that my Darwin point has no validity but I guess we can put that aside.
I would like to understand what is fair and "good" about abortion? My point was solely based on potential to a life worth living. But let's discuss your point. A woman has the ability to make a decision. What if your opinion happens to be that that decision should never have been a decision at all? That that decision is wrong; that that decision is murder? You are right in that the mother has the ability to make decisions and a fetus does not, but you fail to take the actual decision into consideration.
A fetus cannot have interest in being alive. You are right. But you're not seeing the same thing I am. The reason they do not have vested interest in life is because they don't have vested interest in anything; they're incapable of having vested interest in anything. You interpret that as the mother's interest is therefore ultimately dominant in the situation. I have trouble seeing the fairness of that. I think we have the obligation to protect the fetus until it is able to make decisions.
To present a new argument to discuss, is a fetus not protected by the Constitution?
Vegetative States are not always permanent. There is almost always some possibility of the person waking up, which is why life support systems are used, and it is up to the doctors and the family when to give up on that hope.
With regards to the fetus having the potential to develop, as callus as this may seem, so what? The mother is already able to make rational decisions based on her life, and you are saying the the potential of the fetus is more important. Pregnancy does permanent damage to a mother's body. Things change that can never be changed back. In the case of rape, you are essentially demanding that she suffer for 9 months with the reminder of her attack, then live forever more with the scars and stretch marks to always keep that pain fresh. Some women are able to carry the baby, because they are able to work through that, but to say that they don't get the choice is cruel.
I have said before (possibly in other debates) that I don't agree with the use of abortion as a form of birth control. I don't think it should be used instead of proper contraceptives, but I also will not try to tell someone else what can and cannot be done to their body.
The debate is whether abortion should be legal, and if there are times when it is the humane, ethical or best choice, it has to be legal or we are forcing inhumane, unethical, or cruel treatment on some. We don't prescribe narcotics to everyone who asks, and we shouldn't permit abortion to be a get out of jail free card, but it should not be illegal.
No, it's not wrong. I suppose I'm not presenting my view sufficiently. A person who is in a vegetative state has no potential to be anything else. A fetus, even if they are mentally incapable of consciousness, has the potential to develop. Their condition, if you will, is not permanent, as a person in a vegetative state is. For a person in a vegetative state, there is no coming back. The same cannot be said for a fetus.
In regards to Darwin, I remember learning about it in AP Bio a few years ago. I know that's what we were taught. Perhaps it was just my teacher taking Darwin's theory to the next level. But if that's the case, we were not taught in that context. When I get the chance, I will do some research and see if I can attach it to another post
@jake you are using abortion as a form of non-reproduction for an entire species. And thus injecting darwinism into a debate which is a personal decision not a decision made by the entire population. We're obviously not talking forced abortions for all. That's why you are flawed in thinking that darwinism applies to this debate.
Now, to your potential argument. Potential does not equate to actual interest. So you haven't spoken to my point of the fetus having no vested interest in being alive. Your argument is then the interest of others seeing the potential interest of the fetus being realized. Thus you propose that we inject the will of others onto the only agent that has a vested interest in an abortion (the mother). Therefore the tyranny of the masses influences the decision of the one. Since the fetus has no interest in whether the abortion takes place, you are injecting the interest of outside agents (yourself) into a personal decision of the mother. Since you don't have to live with the consequences of the decision, the interest you have in the decision is minor. In utilitarian terms, this is a weak interest as opposed to the mother's strong interest and thus is to be given less priority and less status. Therefore the argument remains that there is overall more good that comes from having an abortion than not having it.
You feel that your comparison between people with disabilities is more apt than mine to people in a vegetative state, but I disagree. How much life is ahead is irrelevant to the comparison. If a child or infant is in a vegetative state, us it wrong to end life support?
What you seem to be missing about Darwin is that no individual is more important than any other. The child to see not more important than the parent. The survival of those best adapted to their environment means that they pass on their genes. Parents act to protect their young because that increases the chances of their genes being passed on, but that doesn't confer more importance to the young. I understand Darwin's theory and evolution just fine, the problem is that I am not sure where you got the idea that he felt that a child was more important than it's parent. He may very well have said that an I have never come across it, that's why I asked for more information. Where did you get the idea that Darwin feed that?
They're unable to think for themselves, so the justifies killing them?
Those decisions are made by family members after the person has already lived their life the longest they possibly could. These victims already lived their life. Fetuses have not. That's why I believe your argument to be flawed.
My argument is not flawed because I was, in fact, talking about humans as a species. Darwin's theory is about whole populations so why you say that I don't understand it is troubling to me. If you could point out something that I may be missing, I would appreciate it, really.
@jake the argument that I was making was one of utility. The fetus is unable to have a vested interest in being alive. The mother on the other hand is able to have a vested interest in not being pregnant. Therefore, the abortion produces more good than harm.
Your argument of the brain damaged isn't a terrible example. However, we deny people with brain injuries life all the time. We choose to let them die by denying them food and water when we make end of life decisions for stroke victims, etc... These kinds of decisions are made all the time.
Your Darwin argument is flawed because we are talking about single instances rather than entire populations. It's a misunderstanding of the theory.
I did state that it wasn't a perfect comparison, however, the concept is the same. The argument that our friend, sosocratese, was making was that since that a fetus is unaware or is "unconscious" of what is going on, the termination of that fetus is justified. At least that is how I understood it, but I may have interpreted it wrong.
In regards to Darwin, I did not mean to imply that the parent must always sacrifice herself/himself for the next generation. I stated that the needs of the next generation are simply more important than the previous generation's - which is supported by Darwin's theory. The next generation is always vital in the species survival.
Two problems with your argument. First, a fetus that does not have brain activity is not the same as a person with a neurological disorder, it is more similar to someone in a persistent vegetative state who is being sustained by life support systems. Under these circumstances, there is a time when people do have to decide if they should "pull the plug" because there are times when that is the best option. This is not considered murder, so by the same logic, neither should abortion.
Second, I have never seem Darwin quoted as saying that the next generation is more important than the current one. He said something along the lines of selfless acts to save the young were genetically imperative (the drive is there to make sure our genes continue to be passed on) and talked at length about how is something was better suited to surviving in its environment, it would be more likely to pass it's genes on to the next generation, giving them whatever advantage it had, but I have never seen anything about a parent HAVING to sacrifice themselves for their child. Of he did and I missed it, I apologize, and could you direct me to it?
I'm not entirely sure why the absence of brain activity justifies the killing of a fetus. I know this is not a perfect comparison but can that argument be applied to those with brain disorders? Should the fact that they have no concept of reality justify their death? Of course, there isn't a complete absence of brain activity in people with neurological conditions but the basic concept is the same: since that they are incapable of understanding the world around them, who cares if we kill them?
As for why a mother should carry a baby to term if possible, I believe in the Darwin philosophy that the needs of the next generation are always more important than the previous generations'. Putting that reason aside, there are other valid moral arguments that have been stated previously.
Why shouldn't it be? It already is legal. We have ample understanding of when a fetus is capable of consciousness, and at the very least has brain activity. Late term abortions are already very difficult to get. A fetus is not viable before 21 weeks (the most premature fetus we know of to have survived was 21 weeks. Most born even at this stage die). If it's not capable of sustaining it's own life, why should the mother have to shoulder that burden?
unless it poses a health risk upon the mother it should not be legal