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Is abortion ethical?
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Abortion is ethical within a timeframe

While at conception, the embryo does not possess all the rights of a person, over the course of the pregnancy it will acquire those rights. Therefore, abortion is only ethical prior to the fetus becoming a person with rights.

The Argument

Restrictions and bans on abortion differ throughout areas of the world. In areas where abortions are legal, it can be difficult to find a doctor or nurse who will give an abortion after the first 12 weeks of pregnancy, also known as the first trimester.[1] After those first 12 weeks, abortions will only be carried out if the mother is experiencing a serious or life-threatening health risk as a result of the pregnancy. [2] Abortions should only be carried out during the first trimester, primarily for safety reasons. Since having an abortion after the first 12-14 weeks increases the risk of complications, any later would be risky for the mother. These complications include heavy bleeding, damage to the womb, or infection. There is also a moral issue of whether an unborn baby is considered a human being with the right to life. During the first trimester, the baby is still considered an embryo. During week 11 of pregnancy, the baby develops from an embryo to a fetus.[3] For many, a fetus is considered a legitimate human being, making abortion unethical after this developmental stage. Others will say that having an abortion after six weeks is immoral since this is the stage where the baby (or embryo) develops a heartbeat, which many consider the first sign of human life. While health risks are a major factor for what makes abortion unethical after a certain period of time, the argument as to when an unborn baby is considered a human being with human rights is also a leading factor in this discussion.

Counter arguments

Abortion should not be considered unethical during any stage of pregnancy. For many women, their menstrual cycles are irregular, causing them to not realize how far along they may be in their pregnancy. Women often don't find out they are pregnant until much later in their pregnancy, even after the first trimester. All pregnancies are different, and some women won't experience any pregnancy symptoms until much later. The common 12-week cut-off is too short of a time frame since a woman doesn't always know until it is considered past that window. Women get abortions for many different reasons. For example, rape or incest are sometimes reasons that women seek abortions, making it unethical for the woman to be forced to have a baby she does not want or one that was conceived under traumatic experiences. Another factor can be financial issues. Abortions are not free, and there are instances where a woman cannot always meet the cost of having an abortion right away. Whatever the reason may be, a woman has a right to chose whether or not she wants to have a baby, and should be able to get an abortion at any stage in the pregnancy.



Rejecting the premises


This page was last edited on Friday, 6 Nov 2020 at 11:06 UTC

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