The Instigator
RJ1998
Con (against)
Tied
0 Points
The Contender
Carnuntum
Pro (for)
Tied
0 Points

Abortion should be legal?

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/9/2013 Category: Politics
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,474 times Debate No: 34645
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (18)
Votes (0)

 

RJ1998

Con

Round 1 : Acceptance
Round 2 : Opening Statements
Round 3 : Rebuttal
Round 4 : Rebut the opponents rebuttal
Round 5 : Closing statements

I accept the position of con in the debate abortion should be legal. I will argue that abortion is wrong in every way, shape, and form, and invite my opponent to debate my arguments in the latter rounds of this debate.
Carnuntum

Pro

I accept your challenge, and wish you luck.
Debate Round No. 1
RJ1998

Con

Abortion should never be legal, based on an ethical, moral, and logical perspective. I will split my argument into four sections : life starts at conception/fertilization; inside the womb is a human individual with all of his/her unique attributes and genetic traits; abortion continues to be heinous in cases of rape, incest, and when the mother's life is in danger; and the after effects of abortion hurt the mother, the state, and greater society.

Embryologists and most major textbooks agree that fertilization marks the beginning of a new human individual. The reason is the following : From the moment the sperm makes even the slightest contact with the oocyte, under conditions that are understood and considered normal , all subsequent development to birth of a living newborn is a fait accompli. That is to say, after initial contact of sperm and oocyte there is no subsequent moment or stage which is held in arbitration or abeyance by the mother, or the embryo or fetus. Nor is a second contribution, signal or trigger needed from the male in order to continue or complete development to birth. Human development is a continuum in which so-called stages overlap and blend one into another. All of life is contained within a time continuum. Thus, the beginning of a new life is exacted by the beginning of fertilization, the reproductive event which is the essence of life. The fact that human development and developmental principals don't cease with birth and only ends with death, whether that be at 100 years old or in utero, further portrays the continuum of human life. Therefore, ending the continuum of human life is ending life itself. That is why life begins at conception.

Many contend that the fetus is a blob of tissue that has no human characteristics. This argument is logically and factually flawed. In fact, all DNA material is present at the time of conception. The traits of the individual baby are already in place and immediately there. This gives the fetus all of the scientific characteristics of a living organism that is otherwise known as a human being. This tiny embryo can only be a human being as its characteristics and traits are already present. This means that the baby's eye color, skin color, hair, gender, and other biological traits have already been determined and are in a state of development. Many will argue that because there is no full mental, physical, or emotional development, that the embryo or fetus can't be a human being. I argue that no one outside the womb is different. A child isn't considered to reach the age of reason until around the age of 7, nor is a teenager considered to be fully emotionally mature, and when the elderly suffer from physical or mental ailments such as dementia one does not deny that they are human. In the first 36 days in the womb the embryo is on pace to be 1.5 tons when they are born (1). By 40 days the rate of growth in the heart is 1 million cells a day. Some may say that until the heart beats it can't be a human, one of my friends actually contended this belief, but if my heart was pulled out this instance I could live and be conscious for another 30 seconds. Another point in my argument is two babies are the exact same age from conception, one is born two weeks early making it an official "baby," while the other is late. Because one is outside the womb two or three weeks earlier than another makes it immune to murder, even though they are the same age. For these reasons a human individual is a life inside the womb.
(1) http://www.ted.com...

As I have established, abortion is killing a human being. The act of rape is a very heinous crime, however it shouldn't warrant murder. Society has never viewed murder of a human outside the womb acceptable, why should the view of murder inside the womb any different? Many will argue that the woman didn't want the child and shouldn't have to take responsibility for something she didn't plan for, but think of the unborn child who is innocent and hasn't committed any crime. The US justice system has 8 categories of rape. In four the punishment is life imprisonment, in 3 categories the maximum prison time is 15 years, and the in last category the maximum prison time is 10 years, yet while the rapist keeps his life, the innocent unborn baby is murdered. In cases during incest, while the baby may be prone to genetic disorders, it shouldn't allow for murder, modern medical technology would allow for the baby to get proper care, and with so many families looking to adopt, there is no point in having an abortion and the innocent baby should live. In fact there are 1.5 million American families wanting to adopt so there is no such thing as an "unwanted child," therefore giving options to those raped and a home for babies in cases of incest and rape (2). In cases where the mother's life is in danger, the fact of the matter is the hospital must do what they can to try to save both lives. If the mother dies in child birth, due to natural causes, while tragic, is a historic and inherent risk, while the option of aborting is murder. I would never go to one of my friends, rip his heart out, and give it to another friend to save him. It is completely nonsensical to kill one person to save another. These reasons explain why abortion continues to be a heinous act of abortion even in the worst-case scenarios.

(2) http://www.truthfulpolitics.com...

The after effects of abortion hurt many parts of society and the mother herself. The mother is damaged immensely by abortions. The Elliot Institute for Social Science Research concludes statistics of women who had an abortion that show 90% suffer damage in their self-esteem, 50% begin or increase alcohol and drugs, 60% report suicidal idealization, 28% actually attempt suicide, 20% suffer full blown post traumatic stress disorder [PTSD], 50% report some symptoms of PTSD, 52% felt pressured by others to have the abortion. Women who have had an abortion are four times more likely to get breast cancer (3).

(3) The Times, May 17, 2001

The state is damaged by abortion in a number of ways. Because men and women are no longer necessarily obligated by the vow of the the marriage bond, women are often left by the father of her unborn child following an abortion. A great sense of guilt, remorse, and shame often follows with severe depression. Since minorities are disproportionately more likely to seek an abortion and be targeted for abortion services by Planned Parenthood, she often finds that the emotional results of the procedure lead to broken dreams or the perpetuation of behaviors that lead to further unplanned pregnancies and subsequent repeat abortions. Many such women are in need of state support, welfare benefits, and other government benefits As the woman suffers from these negative after effects, her goals and dreams are frequently negatively impacted and she becomes more likely to seek government subsidies. It is worth noting that the Great Society and the sexual revolution coincided in US history. One logically follows the other. The government sent the message that sexual promiscuity was morally neutral and that if pregnancy results, it would offer assistance, no questions asked. Since 1964 illegitimate births have zoomed 400 percent. The welfare state encourages this by financing it, which is why abortion rates continue to remain high.
Carnuntum

Pro

I shall be arguing for the legality of abortion.

My argument assumes the following: A person may do with any organisms that are in symbiosis with him/her in whatever manner he/she chooses, including removal.

So logically:
Premise: An unborn human is in a symbiotic relationship with a woman,
Conclusion: therefore she may choose to do with it in whatever manner she chooses, including removal.

Defense of Premise:
An unborn human's relationship with the woman is fundamentally akin to symbiotic parasitism resulting from parasitic organisms such as tapeworms, guinea worms, fleas, ticks, etc. Both relationships involve the parasite draining nutrients from the woman's body, and both usually release toxic bio-waste.
Similarly, the unborn human is akin to cancer and Hydatidiform mole(1), as all three are human-celled growths, develop beyond the woman's control, drain resources from the woman's body, and release toxic bio-waste(2).

Defense of Conclusion:
In the cases of parasitic organisms, cancer, and Hydatidiform mole, the treatment is virtually always removal. As an unborn human is fundamentally similar to these cases, it is logical to assume that removal of the organism is equally justified.

1: (http://www.nlm.nih.gov...)
2: (http://www.tcolincampbell.org...)
Debate Round No. 2
RJ1998

Con

My counter-part compares an unborn child to a tapeworm or parasite.

At this point in the debate it has becomes a moral issue of life and death. Comparing a human being to a parasite is an abomination to the human race. A tapeworm certainly isn't considered at a human level for those who have been born, so why is it at an unborn humans level? The slipper-slope affects of that argument would be detrimental to society. What's next? Contraceptives led to widespread adultery, adultery led to abortion, abortion has led to infanticide and aborting due to down syndrome, putting human life at level of a tape worm or parasite will lead to who knows what. The fact of the matter is that abortion has become more than a scientific issue, it's become the question, "do you value human life?"
Carnuntum

Pro

In this post I shall rebut Con's points.

1) Life starts at conception/fertilization:

Con asserts that life begins at conception. Well, I must concede this point because it is inarguable that biological life begins at fertiliazation. However, this renders Con's argument somewhat trivial; the question should not be, "is an unborn human alive?" But instead be, "is an unborn human a person?" Because lesser animals have limited rights, there is not doubt that full natural rights are derived from person-hood.

So, does an unborn human qualify as a "person"? In short, no. Under Common Law, "person-hood" begins from birth and ends at death(1). As an unborn human has yet to be born, it does not yet qualify as a person and is not protected under the law. Common Law also provides the basis for the inclusion of "entities that are sufficiently like human beings in their behavior to be indistinguishable for legal purposes, such as aliens, androids, or genetically enhanced animals, which have interests, an ability to reason, and an ability to communicate"(1). This suggests that the qualities that distinguish a person are traits such as having interests, an ability to reason, and an ability to communicate, all of which an unborn human lacks.

With person-hood sufficiently defined, one might still ask, "is an unborn human a person?" Lesser animals certainly are not, and unborn humans lack the defining qualities that lesser animals also lack. Thus, the unborn human is not a person.

Con states that, "all life is contained within a time continuum." This brings up an issue with potentiality. Con can assert that development of an unborn human is fait accompli, however, this is simply unbalanced because according to Lynn Wiley, professor of obstetrics and gynecology, "up to 50 percent of human conceptions fail to survive"(2). So while human conceptions will have the potential to form persons, they also have an equal potential to not. That said, potentiality is rather irrelevant because Con's argument is taking something that MAY be true and asserting it as something that IS true. One of the comments on this debate makes an excellent analogy, "Potentiality arguments fail because they want you to value a empty cookie jar as much as a full cookie jar which is quite laughable at best"(GEIxBattleRifle). It's also analogous to the following: I have the potential to commit a crime, yet you cannot call me a criminal until I do.

Therefore we must conclude that potentiality is irrelevant in this debate.

2) Inside the womb is a human individual with all of his/her unique attributes and genetic traits:

Con wants us to believe that inside the womb is a human individual with all of his/her unique attributes and genetic traits, and this is somewhat true. However, while the unborn human already has its DNA and genes, genetic mutations can occur in utero, during the development of the fetus(3).

That is irrelevant though. This argument is similar to the first one in the fact that the unborn human has the potential to become a person, and to which I must respond; potentiality is irrelevant.

3) Inside the womb is a human individual with all of his/her unique attributes and genetic traits; abortion continues to be heinous in cases of rape, incest, and when the mother's life is in danger:

Con states that he established that abortion is killing a human being. However, the term "being" is much too broad to accurately determine what exactly abortion is killing. "Being" can denote anything from something conceivable as existing, to something that is a person. Let us drop that word then. So, abortion is killing an unborn human. That much is true, but as the unborn human is not a person, than killing it is no different from killing a lesser animal such a tape worm or flea.

"Society has never viewed murder of a human outside the womb acceptable, why should the view of "murder" inside the womb any different?"
Con uses the term murder incorrectly.

mur·der noun \G2;mər-dər\

1 : the crime of unlawfully killing a person especially with malice aforethought

An unborn human does not qualify as a person, therefore it is not murder. Con continues to use the word "murder" incorrectly throughout this argument and thus their use must be disregarded.

"Many will argue that the woman didn't want the child and shouldn't have to take responsibility for something she didn't plan for, but think of the unborn child who is innocent and hasn't committed any crime."
This is false. The unborn human is not protected under the law, and thus can be neither innocent nor guilty. If the fetus were a person, it certainly would not be innocent because it commits heinous acts of assault by draining the woman of nutrients.

The rest of Con's argument suggests other options aside from abortion, and continues to assert that abortion is murder. As shown above, abortion is not murder, and no crimes are committed by the woman through aborting. So ultimately, it is the woman's body that is affected, and ultimately her choice.

4) The after effects of abortion hurt the mother, the state, and greater society:

Con provides statistics that show the after effects of abortion, which includes damage to self-esteem, increased use of alcohol and drugs, suicidal idealization, attempted suicide, and post traumatic stress disorder. However Con fails to mention that these are symptoms of Postpartum depression, which also can occur in women that have a natural birth or miscarriage(4).

Con's entire next argument asserts that abortion leads to an entire series of events that subsequently damages the state. He commits a slippery-slope fallacy by suggesting that if A happens, then by a gradual series of small steps through B, C,…, X, Y, eventually Z will happen, too. By providing no reason or argument for why these events inevitably lead to one another, it leaves his entire argument weak at best.

This also may be an example for a bare-assertion fallacy because he asserts this argument without providing any evidence for us to believe it's true.

1: (http://constitution.org...)

2: (http://ucdavismagazine.ucdavis.edu...)

3: (http://www.ndsu.edu...)

4: (http://www.webmd.com...)

"Comparing a human being to a parasite is an abomination to the human race"
Con believes my stance to be an abomination. It seems to me that his argument at this point is rather arbitrary, as I do not consider it an abomination. Con then writes,
"A tapeworm certainly isn't considered at a human level for those who have been born, so why is it at an unborn humans level?"
I can answer that actually. A tapeworm is not considered to be at a similar class for those children who have been born because the child no longer relies on the mother for sustenance. The child is not in parasitic symbiosis like the unborn human is.

Con then commits the slippery-slope fallacy again. He provides no evidence as to why contraception leads to adultery, and adultery leads to abortion. Ironically, he somewhat contradicts himself by saying contraception will eventually lead to abortion, but with contraception, the chances of pregnancy resulting from adultery would be significantly reduced.

In Con's rebuttal, he does not adequately refute my argument through fact and logic, but instead relies on subjective opinion.

Debate Round No. 3
RJ1998

Con

RJ1998 forfeited this round.
Carnuntum

Pro

Con forfeited. I await for his rebuttal in the next round.
Debate Round No. 4
RJ1998

Con

RJ1998 forfeited this round.
Carnuntum

Pro

It seems that Con has given up on this debate.
Debate Round No. 5
18 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by GEIxBattleRifle 3 years ago
GEIxBattleRifle
Yeah and that abortion could've killed a Hitler or serial killer. Brandedguts, your logic sucks
Posted by Carnuntum 3 years ago
Carnuntum
@Anyone:
That is irrelevant. Implications suggest that humans may remove symbiotic organism from their bodies because it is done regularly and without any moral or ethical response.
For example: Whenever you spit, you remove and kill millions of micro-organisms without a second thought. The same happens when you wash your hands as well, or when you use disinfectant on a cut.
Posted by Anyone 3 years ago
Anyone
My comment against Carnuntum's position: The state of symbiosis between any two or more organisms does not determine the natural rights and natural responsibilities of any of the organisms.
Posted by Brandedguts 3 years ago
Brandedguts
Currently our sun is fusing tritium with deuterium. It won't be long before it starts fusing helium, than oxygen, than nitrogen until it fuses iron the heaviest element capable of fusing based on Higs boson.

Here is the kicker, we don't need to wait for the sun to start fusing iron before we are all screwed! Once it starts fusing helium, we are screwed. Right now the only living beings on planet Earth capable of colonizing another planet and saving as much species of animals from this planet is us humans.

Developing super conductors at room temperature with solidified metallic forms of hydrogens through extreme pressures, developing graphene or nanotubes for spacecrafts, developing fusion reactors, using jupiters immense magnetic field for 30% lightspeed travel, etc.

I am sorry, but all this requires very intelligent people. People on the intelligence scale as Einstein, Curie, Hawkings, Tesla, Galileo, etc. We need more people capable of developing new technologies and ideas. Regardless of economic class, super intelligent humans have come from every facet of life.
Some of the smartest people ever actually came from the poorest of conditions.

What if one of the baby that was the next Einstein has already been aborted and killed off?
What if one of the already aborted baby could have found cure for cancer? Or developed super conduction at room temperature? Or developed powerful sustainable energy? Or developed feasible spacecrafts to turn us into a type 2 or 3 civilization? What if we already killed off the next Gandhi? What if??????????

Believe it or not the most important resource at the moment is humans. For better or worse, we are the only living beings on this planet right now capable of saving this planet. The question is, why are we allowing the massacre of possible Einsteins and Curies out there for selfishness?

Please don't tell me that life will be too rough. I had been homeless, sexually assaulted as a child, beaten, injured, etc
Posted by GEIxBattleRifle 3 years ago
GEIxBattleRifle
Having a heartbeat is not criteria for personhood. Something will need to have a set of traits that is not in a mere animal. Whatever those traits are, the human fetus does not have them. Potentiality arguments fail because they want you to value a empty cookie jar as much as a full cookie jar which is quite laughable at best.
Posted by sharkcrazy 3 years ago
sharkcrazy
the fetus is actually alive as you can hear its heartbeat (obviously using a specially designed device) of which the unborn child beats twice the rate of your own. The only occasion i would ever be for abortion is when it will save the mothers life therefore if you didn't want a child wear protection or don't have sex, simple as.
Posted by angel_p151 3 years ago
angel_p151
The abortion should be legal, because the fetus is not totally alive yet, so the mother, that is who is going to suffer when the baby born, have to can choose about it.
Posted by sharkcrazy 3 years ago
sharkcrazy
i'm against abortion its murder to life that hasn't had a chance to live. And what about people who can't have children, if you don't want the child when its born put him/her up for adoption or common sense use a condom or don't sex at all
Posted by GEIxBattleRifle 3 years ago
GEIxBattleRifle
I like PRO's argument so far. That's exactly how the unborn are treated and should be exactly treated.

And elvrion I agree with what you put down in the comments as well. No women should be forced to be life support for a organism with a animal class brain even if she put it there. I can purposely put tapeworms and guinea worms in my body and still go to the doctor and have them killed and removed.

All this talk about the unborn don't understand what they're doing is pointless since there are plenty of other organisms that can get in your body and do the same actions as the unborn do and we can still kill and remove them even though they didn't understand what they were doing. Surprisingly the unborn of our species should be treated the exact same way.
Posted by RJ1998 3 years ago
RJ1998
No problem carentum. Look elvroin I respect your personal oppinion but you need to respect mine whether you are right or not this isn't your debate if you want to debate the subject join or create one.
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