The Instigator
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The Contender
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Abortion should be legally tolerated.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/24/2012 Category: Society
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,183 times Debate No: 28596
Debate Rounds (3)
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Resolved: Abortion should be legally tolerated.

Abortion is defined as a termination of a pregnancy by the induced expulsion of a fetus by Webster's dictionary(1). Abortion is a safe medical procedure, that shouldn't be repealed because of the morals of certain religious groups. Unfortunately, often times this particular argument becomes a quarrel because it becomes a moral thing, and you can't debate morality. According to the National Abortion Federation (2), Abortion is very safe- 97% of abortions are effective and have no complications, only 3% of abortions have minor complications that are harmless. If abortion is a safe and isn't causing any harm-- why should we repeal a woman's choice to have it? Therefore, if abortion is safe, the federal government has no reason to repeal abortion laws.



"Unfortunately, often times [sic] this particular argument becomes a quarrel because it becomes a moral thing, and you can't debate morality."

Interesting. Has Pro considered that all laws are founded on moral principles? The only way to justify the illegality of murder is to affirm the immoral nature of the act; how else would outlawing murder be justified? Moreover, stealing is illegal, because we put a high moral value on the right to keep possessions.

If Pro is against the incorporation of moral standards in law, then he is against the existence of all present laws. This would certainly broaden the scope of this debate, but if the opponent holds this anarchist view, then I will be more than glad to argue against it.

"Abortion is very safe"

This is irrelevant to the argument I will be making, which is that abortion obstructs one's right to life. I'm sure murder is very safe; 100% of murder victims don't retaliate... Nonetheless, it is illegal and justifiably so.


We will be building off of the axiom that murder is morally wrong. If the opponent wishes to contest this, then we will debate it; otherwise, it will be a given.

An embryo is a human being at an early stage of development and is morally equivalent to a human being at any other stage of life. A baby is different from an adult based on size, dependence, and development--yet, in our culture, we value it equally to an adult, since it is a human with the potential to live onward and develop further. We cannot murder others, because it is not our right to preclude another individual from experiencing his/her future. And the mid-life termination of a human (which is a continuous state of development) is, in general, morally and legally impermissible... with the exception of abortion. This is, of course, unjustifiable and wrong.

Debate Round No. 1


"An embryo is a human being". Interesting my opponent might say this because there is no evidence regarding that life does begin at conception making it murder. That is a claim only morally supported, hence they're making a moral debate based on opinions that don't apply to every person in the nation. I suggest they take a more altruistic approach and think of people who don't necessarily share their view. According to a national poll, about 70% of people believe that abortion should be legal and many of them believe that life begins at birth. I actually do concede that morals did formulate some of the current laws, but it is the morals of citizens-- the nation's conscience of which most believe in that abortion should be available. It is "we the people of the United States," therefore if legal decisions are based on the morals of citizens who agree with abortion than there is no debate-- it is already decided.


Prominent embryologists uphold the notion that life begins at conception:

"The development of a human being begins with fertilization, a process by which two highly specialized cells, the spermatozoon from the male and the oocyte from the female, unite to give rise to a new organism, the zygote."

"The development of a human begins with fertilization, a process by which the spermatozoon from the male and the oocyte from the female unite to give rise to a new organism, the zygote."

"Almost all higher animals start their lives from a single cell, the fertilized ovum (zygote)... The time of fertilization represents the starting point in the life history, or ontogeny, of the individual."

The question is not "does life begin at conception?". Rather, the question is, "is the life that begins at conception morally equivalent to you and me?".

And, in response to that question, I will argue yes. I am morally equivalent to what I was when I was a fetus, because I was the same organism that was simply at a different stage of development.


My opponent assumes that the moral views of the majority inherently produce justifiable laws. Predominant moral views shift. For example; most people view legalization of slavery as a mistake... and just because a majority of people supported it at the time does not mean that it was right to have it legalized. For this reason, the opponent's "70%" statistic is irrelevant.

Moreover, my opponent's (already meaningless) statistic is not defended with a source, I will respond with my own statistic, for the sake of clarification: a May 2012 Gallup (an acclaimed, reputable polling company) Poll showed that Pro-Choicers constitute 41% of the population, while Pro-Lifers constitute 50%.


[1] Langman, Jan. Medical Embryology. 3rd edition. Baltimore: Williams and Wilkins, 1975, p. 3
[2] Sadler, T.W. Langman's Medical Embryology. 7th edition. Baltimore: Williams & Wilkins 1995, p. 3
[3] Carlson, Bruce M. Patten's Foundations of Embryology. 6th edition. New York: McGraw-Hill, 1996, p. 3
Debate Round No. 2


aisweeney98 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
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