Abortion is a hotly contested and controversial topic. It’s been the subject of heavy debate, especially in recent years thanks to a number of laws introduced in countries, especially the US, that restrict when abortions can legally take place. Here’s a look at the two sides of this ongoing ethical debate that continue to divide opinion.
Arguments Against Abortion
The key argument against abortion boils down to the fact that there’s an innocent life in the womb. Terminating that life, for whatever reason, is akin to murder. After all, you’re effectively ending the life of the unborn baby. But when is the foetus classed as a living being? Many believe that once the foetus develops its own heartbeat, then it should be treated as a living human being with its own rights. There are laws against killing people, so there should be laws against killing a foetus with a heartbeat. It may not be fully developed or even born, but it’s still technically alive. Many who are against abortion believe it should still be allowed in extreme cases, such as rape, incest or if the life of the mother and/or baby is at risk. But generally speaking, the feeling is that an unborn baby with a heartbeat has a right to life.
Arguments For Abortion
A lot of the talk in favour of abortion seems to be about the rights of the pregnant woman. Many think that a woman should be able to legally terminate an unborn child and not face prosecution or judgement of any kind for doing so. A woman may fall pregnant accidentally, or she may decide she’s not ready or financially stable enough to bring up a baby and give him or her a good life. Even if a pregnancy isn’t accidental, a woman may still decide she wants an abortion, whether it’s for her own benefit or the unborn baby’s, or both. Some think abortion should be allowed because it helps prevent overpopulation. Many women will actively choose to abort their baby if it’s going to be born with a severe disability of some kind.
For The Woman To Decide?
Critics of anti-abortion legislation have remarked that it’s a lot of politicians, who are mostly men, who are putting these laws into place. In other words, it’s men deciding and restricting what women can do with their own bodies. Should the legality of abortion be decided solely by women? Some women might be anti-abortion and may decide never to get an abortion themselves and that’s fine. Others may not necessarily want to have an abortion, but they have their reasons for opting for one and they feel it’s the best decision to make. Should abortion just be legal everywhere? If it is, those who decide to get one can do so safely without consequence; those who disagree with it simply don’t have to get one. In cases like this, surely it’s better for the individual to decide, i.e. a pregnant woman, whether to go through with the act or not?
There’s never going to be a solution to the abortion debate that pleases everyone. It’s always going to be an issue that’s debated intensely around the world. Whether abortion laws become more restrictive or less so over the next few years remains to be seen. What’s clear is that no matter what its legal status is, there’s always going to be opposition.