Friday, October 28, 2011
Emily Nelson RD
28 October 2011
Abortion: The Arguments in Today's Society
Abortion is one of the most highly debated topics among the world to this day. There are many different views and opinions that surround this topic that make the situation all that more complicated. The sides of the argument include Pro-Choice and Pro-Life. Pro-Choice refers to those who believe women should have the option to abort a fetus. Pro-Life activists believe abortion should be made illegal. When a woman is given the option to abort, immediately there is a lot of emotion and pressure surrounding the decision to be made. Depending on the circumstance, a woman’s right to abort a fetus is crucial, always controversial, but ultimately it is a very impactful decision from all angles. Pro-Life activists have valid arguments and support the right to life, but there are times where abortion is done in an understandable situation. Overall, abortions can be done for the right reasons but they aren’t always recognized for being a logical decision.
The video above, provided by Guttmacher Institute, gives real life current statistics about abortion. People who get abortions come from many different ages, races, religions and locations. At the end of the video it ultimately describes that abortions are always going to be needed. Women are always going to need to abort at some times. Guttmacher also provides an informative blog cite that lays out more figures on abortion. It also provides abortion services and explains the laws around the process.
The main argument for pro-choice supporters is for choices to remain an open option for any individual, there should not be a law against deciding if having a child would be a good option for the carrier or for the unborn. When a fetus isn’t recognized as entering personhood, abortion is not able to be judged by the government as murder. Recently the government has put many restrictions on abortion rights. According to the article The Case for Pro-Choice Participation in Drafting Fetal Homicide Laws, by Mary Beth Hickcox-Howard, fetal homicide laws are putting a lot of restrictions on women who want to abort. “The only acceptable response to a proposed fetal homicide law is to attempt to block its passage entirely and substitute a bill that enhances punishments for assaulting a pregnant woman, but does not create a separate criminal offense for harming of killing the fetus,” (Hickcox-Howard 319). Pro-Choice activists do not like when new laws are passed, it creates more work for them to prove their stance. The new laws put restrictions on abortions and make it more difficult for a woman in need to get the procedure.
When researching the topic of abortion, a lot of results came up as personal stories and experiences. Many pro-choice activists post about positive abortion experiences, Kimberly Blessing goes into detail about the reasons of why she is pro-choice. Many of her points can resonate with many people across the United States. Blessings makes the statement, “I’m pro-choice because I know the panic a woman can suffer when she thinks she’s pregnant,” (Blessings). This feeling is common amongst countless women everywhere. Maybe there was a misuse or no use of contraceptives or maybe there was an incident of rape, sometimes women feel like their life is over when they have an unplanned pregnancy. They must look at the facts and are faced with a very hard decision, women must know if they will be able to take care of this baby and possibly need to decide if they would be able to handle giving it up for adoption. If a woman has an unexpected pregnancy after rape, it is emotionally stressful deciding what to do with the fetus. This is a situation where pro-choice support groups gain a lot of respect on their stance. How can a woman be expected to care for a child that would be a constant reminder of being raped?
Supporters of Pro-Life beliefs use The Bible and government policy to support their anti-abortion opinions. They believe that all lives should be saved, no matter what circumstance, no matter how long the fetus has been in the womb, according to the pro-life side of the argument, once a woman has conception of the fetus, it is a living person and abortion is murder. Most women who have gotten an abortion typically have misused contraceptives or didn’t use them, very few women use protection methods correctly who get abortions. Pro-life supporters believe abortion questions some women’s morality. A blog found about Religion and Pro-Life Issues explains how a woman is guilty of murder when choosing to have an abortion. The blog uses God in the argument and explains how the bible says you should not kill people, from a pro-life stance, abortion is murder. Many pro-life activists use God as their reasoning as to why they do not support abortions. A blog by Frank Pavone, Priests for Life, uses different verses in the Bible to prove many reasons toward anti-abortion. Each post uses a different excerpt from the Bible and brings it back to why abortion is morally wrong.
The topic is black and white for anti-abortionists, if a women is pregnant, they should have the baby. On this side of the argument, they understand that some women are not ready to bring a child into the world, keeping that in mind, this group also provides support to help the mother raise the child or they help them with the adoption process. Religion and Politics: USA, by Lisa Sowle Cahill, explains “The Pregnant Woman Support Act proposes to reduce abortions by promoting pregnancy assistance, adoption, and education and support for new mothers,” (Cahill 189). Cahill acknowledges the fact that women who want to abort should realize there is help for them and they don’t have abort their pregnancy. The main belief of pro-life supporters is a mother should take care of the child until it is able to live outside of the womb, they do not necessarily have to raise the baby but having the baby is the purpose of anti-abortion activists.
SETTLING THE ARGUMENT
Pro-Life supporters are accused of not giving enough support to pregnant women and pro-choice supporters are accused of being murderers. As of now, there is no settlement on the debate of abortion. Many states have lowered the amount of money they give to abortions and require much more legal processing before a woman can actually get an abortion. The numbers of abortions have been on the decline since the 1980s but they still occur fairly often. Approximately 3,700 abortions occur daily in the United States. Unintended pregnancies will always be an issue in America, how the government decides to handle the situation is still undecided but researchers predict the number of abortions will continue to be on the decline.