The Instigator
somerandomvideocreator
Pro (for)
The Contender
A341
Con (against)

Abortion should be illegal save for a threat to the mother's life.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 9/9/2017 Category: Politics
Updated: 4 months ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 452 times Debate No: 103877
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (3)
Votes (0)

 

somerandomvideocreator

Pro

I shall let my opponent state his opinion first.
A341

Con

Since my opponent has not provided a definition of abortion I'll just go with "the deliberate termination of a human pregnancy, most often performed during the first 28 weeks.".

Generally I would agree with pro, that being that in most circumstances abortion should be illegal however I will argue that there slightly more circumstances where abortion should be legal that are not simply covered by threats to the mothers life.

Instances where there is no chance of the fetus's survival

There are a number of conditions where the fetus has no chance or an incredibly low chance of survival, in these cases it is immoral to criminalise abortion for a number of reasons. For one it will not increase the quality of life or particularly extend the life of the fetus due to it either already being dead or imminently about to be and therefore the majority of the arguments against abortion are rendered void. Furthermore it is incredibly traumatic to make a person carry a dead fetus to term as can be seen in this story from Texas [1]. In addition while there might not necessarily be a particularly high risk of death there are health risks in a pregnancy and health risks to carrying a dead or dying fetus that again while not necessarily lethal are harmful [2].

Very early abortion

Within the first 3 days of a pregnancy there is the option to take the so called "morning after pill" which can be used up to 5 days after unprotected sex [3]. At this stage what could become a fetus is a morula of only around 16 cells [4]. While it is technically living there is a substantial difference between this and later pregnancies where there are basic nervous impulses and the beginnings of homeostasis allowing the use of the morning after pill and even encouraging it to at least a degree would decrease the rate of later abortion. This helps deal with the problem where in countries where abortion is banned there are just as many abortions as in countries where it is legal [5] by allowing some ability to terminate pregnancies in the very early stages.

[1] https://www.reddit.com...
[2] https://www.meb.uni-bonn.de... (this appears to have some formatting issues)
[3] https://onlinedoctor.lloydspharmacy.com...
[4] https://en.wikipedia.org...
[5] http://www.independent.co.uk...
Debate Round No. 1
somerandomvideocreator

Pro

Very early abortion: Since it is alive (even though relatively small), it should be illegal.
No chance of Survival: If there is even a 1% chance, it is immoral to reduce it to 0%.
A341

Con

"Very early abortion: Since it is alive (even though relatively small), it should be illegal."

I mean the first question is why? The other more important point is that pro didn't even seek to address my main point with this which was that allowing early abortion will help to reduce later abortion. This is because it provides an easy option for termination early within the pregnancy preventing desperate resorts later on. Part of the reason that this should be allowed is that in countries that have banned abortion there is no statistically significant change in the rate of abortion and as a result of this in order to counter abortion later where the increased development of the baby, the ability for it to feel pain and the relative consciousness they experience.

"No chance of Survival: If there is even a 1% chance, it is immoral to reduce it to 0%."

Right but often here we're talking about cases where the child is already dead or has zero chance of survival which was made clear by my argument.
Debate Round No. 2
somerandomvideocreator

Pro

If the child is already dead, it is not considered an abortion to remove the baby. If the child has zero chance of survival, then it is going to die naturally anyway.

While I undertand your point about very early abortion, I still think it should be banned. If you can prove that the number of abortions would go down by permitting very early abortion, I would understand.

I would make it very strict for people attempting to get an abortion, so that the number would go down significantly.
A341

Con

"If the child is already dead, it is not considered an abortion to remove the baby. If the child has zero chance of survival, then it is going to die naturally anyway."

By both the definition I provided at the start which you did not contest and legal precedent in the United States it is. Furthermore there are circumstances such as with that case from Texas that I cited where the baby is alive but has zero chance of survival. If by "If the child has zero chance of survival, then it is going to die naturally anyway." you mean that it is acceptable to abort a baby with no chance of survival then I claim victory, if you think that it is not please provide an argument to that affect.

"While I undertand your point about very early abortion, I still think it should be banned. If you can prove that the number of abortions would go down by permitting very early abortion, I would understand."

The problem is that statistics for this are not exactly readily available however we know the following:

Abortion rates in countries that do not have abortion bans are the same as those which do (technically it's a little higher in those where it is banned) [1].
Most abortions take place in the early term of the pregnancy [2].
Mexico where abortion is permitted in spesific circumstances in early stages of pregancy has a much lower rate of abortion than the United States (there's clearly more at play than just the laws though I will concede) [3]

With these facts considered it would be at least a fesible conclusion that permitting early stage abortion would assist in lowering later rates of abortion.

[1] http://www.independent.co.uk...
[2] https://www.cdc.gov... (American statistics)
[3] https://lifeinalargefamily.files.wordpress.com...
Debate Round No. 3
somerandomvideocreator

Pro

You do make rather good points...

The only problem I have is that as you can see from American history, http://www.nrlc.org...

Abortion rates skyrocketed due to the legalization of abortion.

Overall, I think I might agree with you now.

Of course, all of these situations are extremely rare, so <1% of abortions currently occuring in countries that allow abortion in any circumstance would fit into these ones.
A341

Con

I think the problem with comparing pre-1970s rates of abortion is three fold. For one before the 1970s the idea of abortion in general was a lot less normalised and as a result other approaches were taken to dealing with unwanted pregnancies for instance here in Scotland there were around 20 "magdalene laundries" which were effectively prisons for "fallen women" similar things existed in England and lasted until the mid 1990s in Ireland with less extreme alternatives in the United States. A second difference is that this was the time when the structure of the average family began to change considerably with the rise of single parenting which had not been seen in such big numbers before and due to the smaller numbers this meant that there was much increased support from the community for single parents in the rare occasions they did appear. And lastly there is a significant increase in people who generally do not want children which was not seen previously. And while of course the legalisation of abortion across a considerable amount of the western world contributed significantly to the first thing that I mentioned you cannot put the genie back in the bottle and the situation is very different to the 1970s therefore criminalising all abortion again would likely be simply a failed policy as it has been in much of Latin America.

On your second point yeah for keeping abortion for dead or dying children legal would be less than 1% of abortions but if you agree with the very early period abortions then that would be a substantial fraction of abortions given that around 65% of abortions occur after 9 weeks (although I do not know if that includes the use of the pill) [1]

Also apologies for not posting this earlier.

[1] http://www.ourbodiesourselves.org...
Debate Round No. 4
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Debate Round No. 5
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by A341 4 months ago
A341
@BabmooShoot, I seem to have taken a stance where abortion should be legal in situations other than simply threatening the mother's life. That appears to be the point of this debate. Yes I'm pro life but that doesn't mean I just support abortion when the mother's life is threatened.
Posted by missmedic 4 months ago
missmedic
Abortion is but a symptom of a greater problem, fix the problem and the symptoms go away.
You lack understanding of the problem, if you believe law enforcement is a solution to the problem.
Who do you punish, the father, the mother, the doctor ? What is the punishment, imprisonment, sterilization, death penalty ? The two main issues to tackle are:
1) does the fetus have rights, and
2) if so, does it also have the right to remain in the womb against the mothers wishes.
Posted by Bamboo_Shoot 4 months ago
Bamboo_Shoot
uhh, I think Con is taking a overly PRO side of this
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