The Instigator
AlternativeDavid
Pro (for)
Winning
5 Points
The Contender
wierdman
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

Abortion Should Be Legal

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
AlternativeDavid
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 8/16/2014 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 809 times Debate No: 60556
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (12)
Votes (2)

 

AlternativeDavid

Pro

Rules:

Round 1: Acceptance, no arguments.
Round 2/3: Arguments and rebuttals.
Round 4: Closing statements. No new arguments or rebuttals.

I argue that abortion should be legal During the First Trimester.
wierdman

Con

I accept your challenge :D
Debate Round No. 1
AlternativeDavid

Pro

I know that this can be a touchy subject, but I really hope that people on both sides vote objectively.

The first trimester of a pregnancy is defined as the first 12 weeks. [1]

Biology

I've never seen anybody compare seeds to a tree. If somebody is going to compare embryos to babies, they should at least be consistent between their organisms.

Something that all anti-choice people should know that an embryo is not a person. The embryo cannot have thoughts, it cannot have feelings, and it cannot have aspirations. The embryo doesn't think about becoming a person. Google defines "human being" as "a man, woman, or child of the species Homo sapiens, distinguished from other animals by superior mental development, power of articulate speech, and upright stance."

Let's break down this definition. "a man, woman, or child", until the end of the first trimester, it is barely a group of clumps of cells that are starting to form. Most people while looking at embryos of different animals wouldn't even be able to tell the difference between a rabbit embryo, a fish embryo, a salamander embryo, a turtle embryo, a chicken embryo, and a human embryo [2]. Throughout the first trimester they are identical.

"Distinguished from other animals by superior mental development, power of articulate speech, and upright stance."

An embryo does not have superior mental development to a living cow. Therefore it is not a human being. Embryos cannot speak, therefore it is not a human being. embryos do not have an upright stance, therefore it is not a human being.

Choice

Women should have the ultimate say in this matter. It doesn't matter what men think. I admit that I'm a man, but until it becomes a female-exclusive matter, I am on the side of women. Women deserve the right to do whatever they feel is best for their body. Men should not get to influence their decision. Women should especially get the choice if they were raped. Finally,

Making the right choice for the embryo.

If the mother wants an abortion, then when the embryo eventually becomes a person, it won't be appropriately cared for. A woman that wants an abortion obviously is not ready to a mother. Be she a high school girl, (FSM forbid) a middle school girl, or even a 26 year old woman. Nobody should be able to force a woman to have a child they cannot care for. Especially because it ruin the life of a young girl. A teenage girl that has a child to raise won't be able to attend college without help. If she cannot afford help, and does not have anybody to reach out to, she will have to get a low paying part time job. She'll only be able to get a real job once the kids are in school, but she won't have obtained any skills for a real job. Attending night school/online school is only an option if you have time, and it takes years to get a degree. My final point on this is what if you can't afford to raise a child? It costs $240,000 to raise a from birth to 18 years old. That doesn't even include the cost of college [6].

I'm sure that all anti-choice readers are thinking the same thing: adoption. This isn't as good of an idea as it sounds. There are 104,000 children in foster care, waiting for a loving family. 20,000 kids age out of foster care every year without having a real home [3]. There were roughly 1,000,000 abortions in the United States in 2012 (the latest year with available statistics [4]. Let's add 1,000,000 kids every year to the existing 104,000. We're now at 1,104,000 children that need to be adopted. Not only does the country not have the infrastructure for that, but I doubt adoption rates will increase to cover the increase in children.

These are only legal abortions though. "Estimates of the number of illegal abortions in the 1950s and 1960s ranged from 200,000 to 1.2 million per year. One analysis, extrapolating from data from North Carolina, concluded that an estimated 829,000 illegal or self-induced abortions occurred in 1967." [5]

"In 1962 alone, nearly 1,600 women were admitted to Harlem Hospital Center in New York City for incomplete abortions, which was one abortion-related hospital admission for every 42 deliveries at that hospital that year. In 1968, the University of Southern California Los Angeles County Medical Center, another large public facility serving primarily indigent patients, admitted 701 women with septic abortions, one admission for every 14 deliveries." [5]

It's important that abortions remain safe and legal because banning abortions does not stop abortions. It just makes them more dangerous. In many cases, it is between the mother and the embryo. Who will you choose to save?

Contraception

If one is going to equate abortion to murder, they should also equate birth control/condoms to murder. It does the exact same thing as abortion: it takes away potential life.

[1] http://www.webmd.com...
[2] http://www.dls.ym.edu.tw...
[3] http://www.adoptuskids.org...
[4] http://www.abort73.com...
[5] http://www.guttmacher.org...
[6] http://money.cnn.com...
wierdman

Con

I thank my opponent for this wonderful opportunity. Unfortunately due to some technical issues, I am not able to write a proper case for this argument. I have solved this problem but sadly only in time to post a response to my opponents arguments. To be fair to my opponent, I will not just rely to disproving the arguments made by my opponent rather than writing a case in the third round. Before I begin, I would just like to say that I am arguing that aborting in most cases should be illegal. The exception to this being in cases such as rape and threat to mothers life.

Biology

While I agree that a fetus is not a person, I do believe that they still have a right to life. To begin, I will start by offering two definitions of a human being.
Biological: The definition of "Human being in the biological sense only means an organism with the right set of DNA to be classified as a Homo Sapiens. "Human".
Moral: Individuals with rights, deserve respect, and have intrinsic value. "Person".

To be considered a person according to an abortion activists and author Mary Anne Warren, there are several characteristics that are central to our concept of personhood.
Consciousness of things (intentionality)
Capacity of feel pain (qualia)
Reasoning
Self motivated activity (choosing to perform an activity independent of our instincts)
Communication with arbitrary complexity
Self-Concept

She argues that if something lacks all the above characteristics, then there is no reason to believe that it is a person. If it only lacks one of these characteristics, there is an argument to be made that the entity is a person. Because fetuses lack most if not all of these characteristics, many Pro choice activists tend to argue that the fetus does not have any right whatsoever. The mistake here is that these pro choice activists tend to mistake rights for duties. Don marquis sheds some light on this topic in his writing "Why abortion is immoral".
Rights: he argues that you do not need psychological characteristics to have rights. He uses the severely disabled as an example. A severely mental disabled still have rights even though they do not have the psychological characteristics. You will violate their rights if you take away something from them or even if you abuse them.

Duties: He argues that your duty depends on you ability to recognize someone else's rights and act accordingly. New born babies do not have any duty because they do not recognize rights. This means that psychological characteristics are necessary to have duties.

Using this standard, taking away the fetuses life or even a chance of life is an invasion of the fetuses rights. To kill a fetuse if to rob the fetus of a future like ours. Marquis uses this conclusion to support his position on abortion. He explains that it is immoral to kill anything that has such a valuable future; a future like ours.
( Value is brought on by the smallest things that makes life worth living. This satisfaction does not require that they roll in wealth.)

Choice:

Mary Anne Warren argues that in the moment when you knowing engage in a sexual act; then you have given consent for the fetus to use your body.

To respond to the type of care that the woman might be able to give to the child once conceived, I refer my opponent back to an earlier statement of mine. Value is brought on by the smallest things that makes life worth living. This satisfaction does not require that they roll in wealth. This means that the smallest thing is cause enough to lead a happy life. The smallest interaction, the smallest and mildest experiences is all that is needed to lead a valuable life. For instance, in many third world countries, children are exposed to atmospheres that we consider to be subpar environments to raise a child. This conclusion is not reason to although to believe that these children do have a valuable life and it is certainly not reason enough to take away their right to life.
Debate Round No. 2
AlternativeDavid

Pro

"To begin, I will start by offering two definitions of a human being."

It seems that Con and I have conflicting definitions of "human." I personally believe that having the potential to become human does not make you one.

"To be considered a person according to an abortion activists and author Mary Anne Warren"

It seems that Con brought up this pro-choice activist as a straw man argument.

"Using this standard, taking away the fetuses life or even a chance of life is an invasion of the fetuses rights."

This really depends on the definition of "human". Until everybody can come to a consensus regarding this word, Con and I will disagree on this.

I would like to point out something. Con used the word fetus eight times. I specifically argued that abortion should be legal during the first trimester. During this stage we are talking about zygotes and embryos, not fetuses.

"This satisfaction does not require that they roll in wealth."

What about the kids that are forced to go without food because their parents cannot afford it?

--------------------------------------------

Con mentioned that they could not put together a full argument in the given time, but as it stands, almost all of my arguments have been left untouched.
wierdman

Con

I thank my opponent for his previous argument.

The first thing my opponent did was to reiterate his definition of the word human being. Let it be known that I did in fact agree with my opponents statement that been a potential human does not make you a human in the case of an embryo. I also provided a much more in debt definition of the word human being which does not contradict my opponents definition. I also provide a standard for defining what a person is.

My arguement that arbortion should be illegal because it takes away the fetuses life is not based solely on the definition of a human being but more on the definition of "Rights" and how to distinguish rights from duties. I will also like to point out that this argument was not addresed at all by my opponent.

"I would like to point out something. Con used the word fetus eight times. I specifically argued that abortion should be legal during the first trimester. During this stage we are talking about zygotes and embryos, not fetuses."

My opponent did not specify the word embryo in the introduction of the debate. My opponent's words are as followed: "I argue that abortion should be legal During the First Trimester." The first trimester as i recall is the first twelve weeks of pregnancy. A fetuse according to googles definition is "an unborn offspring of a mammal, in particular an unborn human baby more than eight weeks after conception." This means that the word fetus is appropriate when describing the first trimester of pregnancy.

"What about the kids that are forced to go without food because their parents cannot afford it?"

Like I said in my first round of argument, value is brought on by the smallest things that makes life worth living. This means that the slightest chance of forming a meaningful relationship with someone is enough grounds to argue that that individuals life is valuable. This again does not require that the person has an exceptionally high standard of living.

It should be noted that many of the arguments that I formed in my first rebuttal were ignored by my opponent. This includes my characteristics that makes an organism a person, definition and distinction of rights and duties, value of life argument, and even my argument on a woman's right to her body.
Debate Round No. 3
AlternativeDavid

Pro

Many of my initial arguments went completely untouched so I will list them here:

-Banning abortions does not stop abortions, it only stops safe abortions.
-There are already 100,000 kids in foster care (in the USA), if people listened to the ban we would see an increase in 1,000,000 foster kids per year.
-Contraception = Abortion
-The potential success that a young girl could attain in life completely thrown away by a child.
-Trees =/= Seeds, therefore potential children =/= children

Most of Con's rebuttals were against somebody that was not me: "Pro choice activists" and Mary Anne Warren in round 2. Con also calls me out for ignoring many of their arguments in round 2, I did so because I was not being argued against. Pro choice activists in general were being argued against.

As I stated in my original argument, this is a touchy subject, and I don't want either debater losing or winning due to bias.

Con, thank you for the debate and I wish you luck during voting and in other debates.
wierdman

Con

wierdman forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
12 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by wierdman 2 years ago
wierdman
Sorry about the forfeit. I was in the middle of moving apartments.
Posted by Aerogant 2 years ago
Aerogant
I am like a guy who is thought to not have sex ever - then after years of thinking I am a virgin, you realize I have just been very sneaky at doing it.
Posted by AlternativeDavid 2 years ago
AlternativeDavid
He debated abortion earlier and said that seeds are not considered trees. He's on a hot streak.
Posted by superbowl9 2 years ago
superbowl9
That's the first somewhat sensical, logical thing I've heard Aerogant say.
Posted by AlternativeDavid 2 years ago
AlternativeDavid
Superbowl9: Yeah thanks for catching that.
Posted by Aerogant 2 years ago
Aerogant
People abort humans.

People abort ideas.

People abort projects.

People abort responsibilities.

Why can't mothers abort a bloody unborn child - it's not born, meaning it has no experience, thus saying there's nothing of waste here! Saying what it can be is not an argument - because nobody cares about everything else that "can be". That's why this whole world is in hell - nobody wants to change!
Posted by superbowl9 2 years ago
superbowl9
Yeah, that would've been bad.
Posted by AlternativeDavid 2 years ago
AlternativeDavid
Fixed it.
Posted by AlternativeDavid 2 years ago
AlternativeDavid
I didn't even notice that I forgot that. Hold on.
Posted by superbowl9 2 years ago
superbowl9
Are you for abortion at any time before pregnancy, or is there a time limit?
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by dsjpk5 2 years ago
dsjpk5
AlternativeDavidwierdmanTied
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Total points awarded:10 
Reasons for voting decision: Ff
Vote Placed by bladerunner060 2 years ago
bladerunner060
AlternativeDavidwierdmanTied
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Total points awarded:40 
Reasons for voting decision: Let's see here...Conduct, obviously, for the forfeit. As to arguments, in terms of the title resolution, Con conceded in R2. But in terms of Pro's specific case, Con failed to adequately address the flaws in his own counter, which left Pro's case standing. Arguments to Pro. As always, happy to clarify this RFD.