Abortion is a hotly debated and very sensitive topic. Some think it’s a woman’s right to have safe and legal access to them, while others think the act of terminating a pregnancy, for whatever reason, shouldn’t be allowed. Some 56 million abortions are performed annually. It’s regarded as one of the safest practices in modern medicine, though it isn’t fully legal and safely practised in all countries. In fact, nearly half of all abortions carried out worldwide are classed as unsafe – they’re performed by unskilled people often in unsanitary conditions. It’s been estimated that nearly half of the world’s women don’t have access to legal abortions. The World Health Organisation recommends that all women should be able to have safe, legal abortions. However, there will always be those opposed to the idea of pregnancies being terminated. So, should abortions ever be made illegal or should they always be legal and accessible?
No – abortions should be legal and accessible everywhere
Abortion should never be made illegal because women should always have the right to terminate a pregnancy. There are many reasons why a woman may not want to have a baby despite falling pregnant: she may have been raped, she or the child may have some sort of serious condition or she may not be able to properly look after the child. It’s the woman’s baby and her body – she has the right to determine whether she goes ahead with the pregnancy or not. If she decides not to, for whatever reason, she should be able to get an abortion carried out properly and legally. As with any other medical procedure, abortion can have its risks. Even if you disregard the ethical side to the abortion debate, it should always be fully legal everywhere for safety reasons if nothing else. In other words, it’s better for abortion to be legal so that those who have one can do so safely and with as little risk as possible. If abortion were to made illegal, how could women around the world be guaranteed safe practices? If abortion were illegal and a woman needed one because of pregnancy complications that were putting her life at risk, where would she go for a safe procedure?
Yes – life is life
The main argument for abortion being made illegal is that it’s an act of killing. When an abortion is carried out, there is a life form developing in the womb that’s essentially killed and prevented from developing any further. It’s a widely held believe that life starts at conception and that when a baby is aborted, at whatever stage of the pregnancy, it’s killed. Some would go so far as to say that those who carry out abortions are murderers, simply because they’re terminating the life of a baby. Yes, that baby is technically still unborn, but it’s still a life. Whether that life was created intentionally or accidentally, surely it deserves a chance of living? Some believe quite strongly that abortion should be made illegal because they see it as an act of killing. Even if the child is conceived through rape or is conceived by people who don’t want a baby, the fact remains that there’s a growing, developing child who has just as much right to life as the woman who’s carrying him or her.
What do you think?
So should abortion ever be made illegal? Do governments have the right to deny women the right to legal abortions or should they not interfere? Does a baby’s life matter when it’s still inside the womb yet to be born? If so, surely abortions should be illegal as terminating a pregnancy is akin to an act of killing? But then what about babies conceived through rape and situations where the life of the baby and/or mother is under threat? Regardless of the ethics, surely abortions should be legal so at least those who have them can have them done safely?