Ethics of Abortion

Most non-religious seem to agree there is a difference between a person and a potential person (I’d ask Christians when they think the soul enters the body, if identical twins share a single soul etc.). Given that there is a continuum between a zygote (the single cell fertilized egg) and a human being, there is no bright line differentiating the justifiable from the immoral. We shouldn’t forget that this debate is taking place in a context in which religious ideologues are trying to pass laws limiting abortion without exception for the woman’s health; there is no logical justification for privileging the life of a potential person over the life of an existing woman. There is a statistical point in development before birth beyond which we should do everything that we can to save the life of the child (excepting of course in cases where the life of the mother is threatened). The question is what science has to say about the rate of fetal development and where to use the force of law to draw a legal line in the sand. “[S]cientific consensus . . . holds that fetuses are unlikely to be able to feel pain before 26 weeks.”
“In most . . . states, abortions are banned only when a fetus is deemed to be old and mature enough to survive outside the womb, typically any time beyond 22 to 23 weeks.”
http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn18785-briefing-new-law-claims-a-fetus-can-feel-pain.html

As technology develops there will be more answers and more questions.

 

originally here:
http://www.reddit.com/r/philosophy/comments/zmth2/ethics_of_abortion/c6628jw

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3 thoughts on “Ethics of Abortion

  1. The abortion topic is ridiculous. The fact that the government thinks they have a say in what a woman does with her body is laughable. Even if they did make it illegal, how can you be ok with someone not being able to get a safe, sterile, abortion? If they outlawed abortion, suicide rates and death rates would go way up because of unsafe abortions – which could lead to major infections that could potentially kill you.

    Realize the failure with that system. How can you use a child as a ‘punishment’ for having sex? Since when do people ONLY have sex for reproduction? Humans are sexual beings. Sometimes no matter how much birth control you use, you can still get pregnant. How it is fair for someone to be sentenced to having an unwanted child? How is it fair to the child and how is it fair to the mother who cannot afford to take care of it and how is it fair to society to have to use their tax dollars to support an unwanted child that could end up homeless or up for adoption (that could never end up getting adopted?)

    Maybe, all these Christian schools and churches should stop teaching abstinence and start promoting other birth control. Everyone knows that no one saves sex for marriage anymore. (besides the rare few) but regardless, when you tell someone NOT to do something 9/10 times they do. That includes sex. We need to, as a society stop pretending like its NOT happening, not be so scared to talk about it and start treating people like they are responsible adults, educate them about safe sex and help REDUCE the number of unwanted pregnancies which will in turn reduce the number of abortions in N. America.

    I recommend the documentary “Let’s Talk About Sex”. It goes into how North America and the UK differ when it comes to sex and why the abortion rate is so much lower in the UK even though they’re having the same amount (or even more sex) then N. Americans. Religion is failing the youth of N. America.

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