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Moral Standing of Abortion - Essay Example

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Moral Standing of Abortion

This paper is an attempt to undertake an objective approach to develop an unbiased and a logically sound thesis aiming at implying a set warrant of the issue by arguing that abortion is morally wrong and unjust, however only under special circumstances (like rape or mother`s like at risk) can abortion be justified as a morally sound decision. Abortion is defined as “the expulsion of a fetus from the uterus before it has reached the stage of viability” (Encyclopedia Britannica). The biological makeup of an embryo or a fetus, by any standard, resembles that of a human as the genetic makeup of the cells of the embryo is the same as that of a human, and the viability stage reaches at week 20 when the embryo fully resembles that of a human. Thus, at the stage of viability it would be only sane to regard abortion as an immoral act as murdering an innocent life negates all the principals of morality. However, under special circumstances, the woman may be allowed to abort the baby, especially when the woman`s life is at stake or if the baby will result in the mental trauma for the woman in case the embryo is a result of rape or sexual abuse. However, if the woman was engaged in a voluntary act which resulted in the conception of an embryo, it would be insane to kill the baby if the embryo has reached the stage of viability. Thus, in any case abortion is an immoral act as an embryo older than twenty weeks is as alive as a grown up human being. However, some cases may be considered as exceptional ones and in some special circumstances abortion can be deemed as a moral act. Firstly, when the life of the mother is at stake for the reason that giving birth to the baby will risk the life of the mother, abortion is absolutely moral. Secondly, if birth resulted from rape or any kind of sexual abuse, which would cause mental trauma as the birth would constantly remind the woman of the unfortunate incident, thus in this case the woman should have the freedom to choose if she wants the baby or not. Thirdly, factor of viability is of importance to decide whether or not abortion is immoral i.e. an embryo if any younger than twenty weeks is conceived it will be fair enough to abort the baby as it won`t be a viable one. In this case, it is important to analyze the arguments and propositions put forth by Thomason (1971) which are referred to by many pro choice advocates. Thomason (1971) tries to negate the conclusion derived by two propositions that firstly, human embryo has the right to life, and if human embryo has the right to life it is morally impermissible to kill him. Thus, it is sensible enough to conclude that it is impermissible to kill the human embryo. However, she tries to negate the conclusion by replacing the second proposition by the relative rights of the mother and the child, i.e. she claims that the mother has a right to take decisions about her body and the fetus has a right to life. In other words, she is trying to argue that the pro-life advocate will then regard abortion as a breach in the rights of the mother as opposed to the rights of the baby. Though the argument seems to be valid, but it lacks soundness as it is a clear example of the fallacy of inappropriateness. Though it is true that a mother has rights, but at the same time she should be responsible enough to take precautionary ...Show more


Name: Instructor`s Name: Moral Standing on Abortion Morality is the set standard, the yardstick through which social, economic and political decisions are justified or nullified. Anything immoral will naturally be unacceptable in the society; however the issue that arises here is that morality is a subjective term, and different people associate different variables to identify the parameters of morality…
Author : igreenholt
Moral Standing of Abortion essay example
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