SHOULD ABORTION BE LEGAL?

Roxana Villegas
Mind Map by Roxana Villegas, updated more than 1 year ago
Roxana Villegas
Created by Roxana Villegas over 2 years ago
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There are two ways of ending a pregnancy: in-clinic abortion and the abortion pill. Both are safe and very common. If you’re pregnant and thinking about abortion, you may have lots of questions. We’re here to help.

Resource summary

SHOULD ABORTION BE LEGAL?
  1. IN FAVOR
    1. The personality begins after a fetus is able to survive outside the womb or after birth, not in conception.
      1. Embryos and fetuses are not independent, self-determining beings, and abortion is the termination of a pregnancy, not a baby. A person's age is calculated from birth date, not conception, and fetuses are not counted in the US Census. The majority opinion in Roe v. Wade states that "the word 'person,' as used in the Fourteenth Amendment [of the US Constitution], does not include the unborn."
      2. Fetuses are incapable of feeling pain when most abortions are performed.
        1. According to a 2010 review by Britain's Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, "most neuroscientists believe that the cortex is necessary for pain perception." The cortex does not become functional until at least the 26th week of a fetus' development, long after most abortions are performed. This finding was endorsed in 2012 by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, which stated that that there is "no legitimate scientific information that supports the statement that a fetus experiences pain."
        2. Modern abortion procedures are safe and do not cause lasting health issues such as cancer and infertility.
          1. A 2012 study in Obstetrics & Gynecology found a woman's risk of dying from having an abortion is 0.6 in 100,000, while the risk of dying from giving birth is around 14 times higher (8.8 in 100,000). The study also found that "pregnancy-related complications were more common with childbirth than with abortion."
          2. Abortion gives pregnant women the option to choose not to bring fetuses with profound abnormalities to full term.
            1. Some fetuses have such severe disorders that death is guaranteed before or shortly after birth. These include anencephaly, in which the brain is missing, and limb-body wall complex, in which organs develop outside the body cavity. It would be cruel to force women to carry fetuses with fatal congenital defects to term. Even in the case of nonfatal conditions, such as Down syndrome, parents may be unable to care for a severely disabled child. Deborah Anne Driscoll, MD, Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Pennsylvania, said "many couples... don’t have the resources, don’t have the emotional stamina, don’t have the family support [to raise a child with Down syndrome
          3. AGAINST
            1. Abortion is murder.
              1. The killing of an innocent human being is wrong, even if that human being has yet to be born. Unborn babies are considered human beings by the US government. The federal Unborn Victims of Violence Act, which was enacted "to protect unborn children from assault and murder," states that under federal law, anybody intentionally killing or attempting to kill an unborn child should "be punished... for intentionally killing or attempting to kill a human being."
              2. Abortion eliminates the potential societal contributions of a future human being.
                1. According to Heisman Trophy-winning football player Tim Tebow, "the reason I'm here" is because his mother ignored the advice of doctors who recommended an abortion. It has also been reported that the mothers of entertainers Celine Dion, Cher, and Justin Bieber were either advised to have abortions or were considering the procedure, but chose to give birth to their babies instead.
                2. Life begins at conception, so unborn babies are human beings with a right to life.
                  1. Upon fertilization, a human individual is created with a unique genetic identity that remains unchanged throughout his or her life. This individual has a fundamental right to life, which must be protected. Jerome Lejeune, the French geneticist who discovered the chromosome abnormality that causes Down syndrome, stated that "To accept the fact that after fertilization has taken place a new human has come into being is no longer a matter of taste or opinion... The human nature of the human being from conception to old age is not a metaphysical contention, it is plain experimental evidence."
                  2. Abortion promotes a culture in which human life is disposable.
                    1. The legalization of abortion sends a message that human life has little value. Pope Francis condemned "'the throwaway culture'" in Jan. 2014, stating that "what is thrown away is not only food and dispensable objects, but often human beings themselves, who are discarded as 'unnecessary'. For example, it is frightful even to think there are children, victims of abortion, who will never see the light of day..." House Representative Randy Hultgren wrote in Jan. 2014 that "When we tell one another that abortion is okay, we reinforce the idea that human lives are disposable, that we can throw away anything or anyone that inconveniences us."
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