ABORTION

Question:

Why can’t people have a conversation regarding abortion without someone getting offended or angry?

What is an abortion?
Abortion, or the removal of an embryo or fetus from the uterus in order to terminate a pregnancy, is such a bitter controversy mainly because there are two sides that share almost no common premises and very little common language.
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Pro-choice
Pro-Life:
A pro-choice person would feel that the decision to abort a pregnancy is that of
the mothers and the state should have no right to interfere.
A pro-life person would hold that from the moment of conception, that the
embryo or fetus is alive. This life imposes on us a moral obligation
to preserve it and that abortion is the same as murder.
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Was abortion always a topic of controversy?
In the past, abortion has not been such an issue because of the fact it was so unreliable. The medications were difficult to prepare in accurate doses and were typically poisonous to the woman herself. However, after the turn of the twentieth century, more technological advancements began to arise and abortion became more reliable, and a greater argument.


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Women with incomes under eleven thousand are over three times more likely to have an abortion, than women with incomes above twenty-five thousand.Unmarried women are four to five times more likely to abort than married. In the past years the abortion rate has doubled among 18 and 19 year olds. Recently the U.S. rate has dropped 6 percent overall but the rate of abortion among girls younger than 15 has jumped up to18 percent and the rate among minorities climbed from 186 per 1,000 to 189 per 1,000.About 40 percent of Americans believe that abortion should remain legal and 40 percent believe it should be banned except when the pregnancy threatens the life of the mother or the result of rape or incest. 15 percent believe it should be illegal in all cases. Almost 90 percent of abortions are performed in the first trimester -- during the first 12 weeks after the first day of the woman's last menstrual period -- with most performed before nine weeks. Because of newer surgical and medical techniques, the proportion of abortions performed at six weeks or earlier has almost doubled in the past decade.Less than 1 percent of abortions are done after 24 weeks.

Fetus or Baby?

Pro-Choice: Fetus
Pro-Life: Baby
But for those who support abortion, their argument is that since the embryo has the capacity to become a child but is not a child yet, it belongs in a very different moral category.The embryo is not considered a legal personSome people believe that although the first heartbeat has occurred, the first breath is taken at birth and that is more important.
Those who oppose abortion usually argue that since the embryo is an unborn child, abortion is more equivalent to murder.The embryo is a natural personThe embryo has certain "unalienable rights"
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Constitutional Connection

  • Right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness
  • Individual Rights: right to privacy, reproductive choice, and freedom of religion
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Roe v Wade
Planned Parenthood V. Casey
  • Used the 14th amendment as a basis concerning the rights of privacy (made abortion legal stating that women’s right to privacy overrules the fetus’s right to life.)
  • Recognizes abortion as a fundamental constitutional right and made it legal in all states. The law now permits abortion at the request of the women without any restrictions in the first trimester and some restrictions in the second trimester to protect the women's health.
  • The National Abortion Right Act League argues that without legal abortion women would be denied their constitutional right of privacy and liberty

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  • The Court upheld the constitutional right to have an abortion but lowered the standard for analyzing restrictions of that right, invalidating one regulation but upholding the others
  • "[i]f the right of privacy means anything, it is the right of the individual, married or single, to be free from unwarranted governmental intrusion into matters so fundamentally affecting a person as the decision whether to bear or beget a child." (Planned Parenthood V. Casey)


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SOURCES