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[DA] Thread on Abortion
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Posted 8/15/09


This thread is similar to any thread on abortion. The idea is to discuss and debate the obviously relevant issues. However, in this case we’re going to argue for the opposition. So, if you’re pro-choice in real life you approach this from a pro-life perspective in this thread, and vice versa. (I guess if you just CANT argue for the other side but want to take part in the arguement you can just debate as is, but that's no fun. ) As many of you know, I’m pro-life. So, here’s my argument in defense of abortion.


When discussing this topic people often get distracted. Instead of asking rather or not a woman has the right to terminate her pregnancy they begin to bicker over the status of a fetus. Does it classify as a living human being, or is it just a bundle of organic material? However, the premise behind the defense of abortion is that this is irrelevant. Justice Blackmun wrote the majority opinion for Roe v. Wade saying, “We need not resolve the difficult question of when life begins.”

Judith Jarvis Thompson does a fine job explaining this logic in her “A Defense of abortion.” The article grants that a fetus is a living human being with human rights. It then asserts that a woman has no obligation to support the fetus. She gives an effective, though admittedly outlandish, hypothetical situation to prove her point.

Imagine that one day you were kidnapped while you slept. By the time you wake up you realize that you’ve been attached to a complete stranger via a series of life supporting tubes. Two options are now available.

You can pull the tubes right away and go on about your life without being forced to use your body to preserve a virtual parasite. However, doing this will result in the stranger’s death. On the other hand you can leave the tubes in place for nine months and THEN remove them. In doing this you’ll allow the stranger a chance to live, but if you do this the process will be painful and expensive.

Now, it would be nice of you to choose the second option. But you have no moral or constitutional obligation to do so. You have a right to go on with your life unfettered, you have a right to choose the first option, you have a right to attain an abortion.
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Posted 8/15/09
I'm pro-choice, so I'll be taking the pro-life stance.



SeraphAlford

Judith Jarvis Thompson does a fine job explaining this logic in her “A Defense of abortion.” The article grants that a fetus is a living human being with human rights. It then asserts that a woman has no obligation to support the fetus. She gives an effective, though admittedly outlandish, hypothetical situation to prove her point.

Imagine that one day you were kidnapped while you slept. By the time you wake up you realize that you’ve been attached to a complete stranger via a series of life supporting tubes. Two options are now available.

You can pull the tubes right away and go on about your life without being forced to use your body to preserve a virtual parasite. However, doing this will result in the stranger’s death. On the other hand you can leave the tubes in place for nine months and THEN remove them. In doing this you’ll allow the stranger a chance to live, but if you do this the process will be painful and expensive.

Now, it would be nice of you to choose the second option. But you have no moral or constitutional obligation to do so. You have a right to go on with your life unfettered, you have a right to choose the first option, you have a right to attain an abortion.


The difference between this and having a baby is that, in the vast majority of cases, the woman has the option to become pregnant and the ability to prevent herself from becoming pregnant. She does have a moral obligation to the child because she is the one who forced it to live. Creating a life out of selfishness and/or lack of foresight and then ending it to avoid the consequences of your mistakes is not morally sound, especially when it involves taking the life of a helpless, innocent human being before they even have the chance to fully experience life and humanity.
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Posted 8/15/09

Cuddlebuns wrote:

The difference between this and having a baby is that, in the vast majority of cases, the woman has the option to become pregnant and the ability to prevent herself from becoming pregnant. She does have a moral obligation to the child because she is the one who forced it to live. Creating a life out of selfishness and/or lack of foresight and then ending it to avoid the consequences of your mistakes is not morally sound, especially when it involves taking the life of a helpless, innocent human being before they even have the chance to fully experience life and humanity.


Morality is no more than a religious invention, and in any modern, progressive, and secular society it cannot be taken into consideration as the deciding factor for a case. What must be considered is not moral permissibility, but rather the constitutionality of the issue. Blackmun presented this argument in Roe v. Wade. Women have a constitutional right to do with their body as they please. A fetus has no constitutional rights whatsoever and is thus constitutionally NOT a human being; therefore, abortion may not be morally permissible (as you point out in your argument,) but it IS constitutionally permissible.
Posted 8/15/09 , edited 8/17/09
I'm normally pro-choice.

But here goes my pro-life argument:

If one can get charged for murder after hurting a pregnant woman causing the death of the unborn child, then why can't the women, who willingly go and kill their pre-born child, get charged for murder as well?


Edited since obviously nobody realised my stance...or maybe what I wrote is not clear enough, or just so dumb that people didn't feel like refuting it?
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Posted 8/15/09

SeraphAlford
Morality is no more than a religious invention, and in any modern, progressive, and secular society it cannot be taken into consideration as the deciding factor for a case. What must be considered is not moral permissibility, but rather the constitutionality of the issue. Blackmun presented this argument in Roe v. Wade. Women have a constitutional right to do with their body as they please. A fetus has no constitutional rights whatsoever and is thus constitutionally NOT a human being; therefore, abortion may not be morally permissible (as you point out in your argument,) but it IS constitutionally permissible.


Morality is much more than a religious invention, and if it had no place in such a society then no one would care about anyone else's life or well-being, and it wouldn't be very modern or progressive. But that's a whole different discussion.

A fetus does have a constitutional right, the right to live. From http://www.renewamerica.com/columns/thompson/041202 :

"There is a direct relationship between the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. The Declaration states what our God-given rights are, "life, liberty, pursuit of happines" (property) and why we declared our independence. The Constitution explains what form of government will best guard these rights."

While a woman does have the right to do whatever she wants with her body, the fetus inside her is not a part of her body, it is a separate human being living within her body. She does not have the Constitutional right to end another human life; therefore, abortion is not Constitutionally permissible nor morally permissible.
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Posted 8/15/09 , edited 8/15/09

Cuddlebuns wrote:

Morality is much more than a religious invention, and if it had no place in such a society then no one would care about anyone else's life or well-being, and it wouldn't be very modern or progressive. But that's a whole different discussion.


Morality is in fact a religious invention, as people have no real intrinsic value. As Richard Dawkins put it in his book, “The Selfish Gene,”

“We are survival machines-robot vehicle blindly programmed to preserve the selfish molecules known to us as genes.”

Organic robots, who create concepts like good and evil for personal benefit. Secular humanism stands only on the grounds of mutual reciprocity and universally beneficial agreements.

But you're right, that's another topic, you can't prove abortion is immoral.



A fetus does have a constitutional right, the right to live. From http://www.renewamerica.com/columns/thompson/041202 :

"There is a direct relationship between the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. The Declaration states what our God-given rights are, "life, liberty, pursuit of happines" (property) and why we declared our independence. The Constitution explains what form of government will best guard these rights."

While a woman does have the right to do whatever she wants with her body, the fetus inside her is not a part of her body, it is a separate human being living within her body. She does not have the Constitutional right to end another human life; therefore, abortion is not Constitutionally permissible nor morally permissible.


According to the fourteenth amendment, the US constitution applies to everyone born or nationalized in the United States. http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/data/constitution/amendment14/


A fetus obviously does not fit into this criteria and is therefore constitutionally not a human being. It has no rights, and abortion is thus constitutionally permissible. The mother, on the other hand, does have a right to privacy that allows her to decide to have her tumor removed.

It is not a human being, and she has no obligation whatsoever to allow this growth to spread within her body. In fact, she has a constitutional right to do the opposite..
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Posted 8/15/09
I honestly can't refute that. I was going to try and prove that a fetus is a human, and from there argue that taking anyone's life, whether they are American or not, would mean that the person is eligible to be tried for murder in court, therefore killing a fetus would be unconstitutional even if it isn't technically an American citizen. But I don't know enough about embryonic growth to know when an embryo becomes a human by definition, and can't come up with a clear, infallible definition as to what a human is (hence why I'm pro-choice). So you win, unless someone else wants to pick up where I left off.
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Posted 8/15/09 , edited 8/15/09
'I have to say I am going to Be Pro-Choice today. lets face it there are times wen people are not ready or do not have the health to have babies. I am sorry but if I find out my wife will have a 30% chance of dieing if she has a kid. Than I am not going to risk my wife life just to have a kid. ' Just because we found out after the pregnancy happened. ' I can think of 100's of resins why pro-choice makes more sense than taking away my wives right to choose.
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Posted 8/16/09

Cuddlebuns wrote:

I honestly can't refute that. I was going to try and prove that a fetus is a human, and from there argue that taking anyone's life, whether they are American or not, would mean that the person is eligible to be tried for murder in court, therefore killing a fetus would be unconstitutional even if it isn't technically an American citizen. But I don't know enough about embryonic growth to know when an embryo becomes a human by definition, and can't come up with a clear, infallible definition as to what a human is (hence why I'm pro-choice). So you win, unless someone else wants to pick up where I left off.


Well, the arguments I presented can all be found here:

Well, that was fun while it lasted anyway. You should do some research on your own question, it’s very interesting. Scientifically speaking, human life begins upon conception. Here, read the article. All of the argument I presented can also be found within the URL.

http://religiousgenocide.blogspot.com/2009/04/abortion-iii-scientific-status-of-fetus.html
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Posted 8/16/09

Darkphoenix3450 wrote:

'I have to say I am going to Be Pro-Choice today. lets face it there are times wen people are not ready or do not have the health to have babies. I am sorry but if I find out my wife will have a 30% chance of dieing if she has a kid. Than I am not going to risk my wife life just to have a kid. ' Just because we found out after the pregnancy happened. ' I can think of 100's of resins why pro-choice makes more sense than taking away my wives right to choose.


Aren't you pro-choice anyway?
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Posted 8/16/09

SeraphAlford wrote:


Darkphoenix3450 wrote:

'I have to say I am going to Be Pro-Choice today. lets face it there are times wen people are not ready or do not have the health to have babies. I am sorry but if I find out my wife will have a 30% chance of dieing if she has a kid. Than I am not going to risk my wife life just to have a kid. ' Just because we found out after the pregnancy happened. ' I can think of 100's of resins why pro-choice makes more sense than taking away my wives right to choose.


Aren't you pro-choice anyway?


Yeah in a way. you can say I am both. Its just think it should be judge case by case. Not everyone is the same that wants to get an abortion.
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Posted 8/17/09 , edited 8/17/09
I'm a bit of both. Think they should be allowed but only up to 9 or 10 weeks... and there should be some sort of limit on how often a woman can get one... you'd think they'd learn their lesson the first time (safe sex, children), and coming in and getting a baby aborted every few months is ridiculous! So what do I say? lol

Pro life: Some people see the baby as alive as soon as it implants into the uterus lining, but even if not can't you see the potential it has? If it's YOUR baby can't you see how inhuman it is to want to kill it because it's inconvenienced you? Just because it's still dependant on your body doesn't make it any less your baby.
And even if I wasn't arguing for this side, I still can see each baby has potential because I'm told my boyfriend was an accident... and abortion isn't legal in the country where he lives. And he's made me the happiest person in the world... :/
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Posted 8/17/09

Sunnyxx wrote:

I'm a bit of both. Think they should be allowed but only up to 9 or 10 weeks... and there should be some sort of limit on how often a woman can get one... you'd think they'd learn their lesson the first time (safe sex, children), and coming in and getting a baby aborted every few months is ridiculous! So what do I say? lol

Pro choice: Some people see the baby as alive as soon as it implants into the uterus lining, but even if not can't you see the potential it has? If it's YOUR baby can't you see how inhuman it is to want to kill it because it's inconvenienced you? Just because it's still dependant on your body doesn't make it any less your baby.
And even if I wasn't arguing for this side, I still can see each baby has potential because I'm told my boyfriend was an accident... and abortion isn't legal in the country where he lives. And he's made me the happiest person in the world... :/


Well, I’m glad to see that we have some moderate perspectives here. Personally, I think that abortion should be allowed in cases of rape or cases wherein the mother’s life is at risk. Beyond this, however, I think it should be completely restricted. So, I’m highly pro-life with some exceptions. You, on the other hand, are pro-choice with some restrictions. Since there are currently no individuals arguing for the pro-life perspective, would you be willing to try and argue for that side to fill in the gap?
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Posted 8/17/09 , edited 8/17/09

SeraphAlford wrote:


Sunnyxx wrote:

I'm a bit of both. Think they should be allowed but only up to 9 or 10 weeks... and there should be some sort of limit on how often a woman can get one... you'd think they'd learn their lesson the first time (safe sex, children), and coming in and getting a baby aborted every few months is ridiculous! So what do I say? lol

Pro choice: Some people see the baby as alive as soon as it implants into the uterus lining, but even if not can't you see the potential it has? If it's YOUR baby can't you see how inhuman it is to want to kill it because it's inconvenienced you? Just because it's still dependant on your body doesn't make it any less your baby.
And even if I wasn't arguing for this side, I still can see each baby has potential because I'm told my boyfriend was an accident... and abortion isn't legal in the country where he lives. And he's made me the happiest person in the world... :/


Well, I’m glad to see that we have some moderate perspectives here. Personally, I think that abortion should be allowed in cases of rape or cases wherein the mother’s life is at risk. Beyond this, however, I think it should be completely restricted. So, I’m highly pro-life with some exceptions. You, on the other hand, are pro-choice with some restrictions. Since there are currently no individuals arguing for the pro-life perspective, would you be willing to try and argue for that side to fill in the gap?


Ooops... I mislabelled it
Read my explanation, it IS pro life
heh... I'll correct that now.

Oh, and wasn't Cuddlebuns arguing pro-life?
Posted 8/17/09
I'm arguing pro-life! I just edited my post since...it obviously didn't seem to be clear enough?
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