What is a woman thinking when she is deciding to have an abortion? Did she think, before sexual intercourse, about the possibility that she may get pregnant? According to Operation Rescue, 87% of women who have had an abortion admitted that they were thinking only of their pleasure when they were not using proper protection or birth control during sexual intercourse. Most women who have abortions are killing an innocent life to fix their mistakes. Other cases exist for example rape or possible disease. Abortion is a risk because what if that fetus becomes the next president, a wonderful brain surgeon, or possibly will find the cure for cancer?
Just to be clear, abortion, as understood from the Merriam-Webster dictionary is the following: “The deliberate termination of a human pregnancy, most often performed during the first 28 weeks.”
As has been stated - above - is that there are many different procedures to carry out an abortion. Each type of procedure differs depending on how far along the pregnancy is. During the first trimester you have an option of medication based or surgical forms of abortion. During the second you no longer have the option of a medication based abortion - and during the third trimester - most states in the US and quite a few countries - unless it is for a medical reason - outlaw this type of abortion.
According to a CDC.gov survey from 2003:
“For women whose type of procedure was adequately reported, 89% of abortions were known to have been performed by curettage (which includes dilatation and evacuation [D&E]) and 0.9% by intrauterine instillation.”
Their research was conducted since 1969. This means that the instillation abortion mentioned by you above, is actually quite rare. According to other sources, it is a method done when there is a health problem for the mother or the child.
Also, the fetus cannot actually feel pain because the neural structures have simply failed to develop - and won’t be developed until the 24th week of pregnancy which is usually passed the point that most women can get an abortion unless continuing endangers the life of the child or mother.
In conclusion to the first part: no, the type of abortion you suggested above is not one that is carried out widely. It is only done when lives are in danger. It is a rare procedure that most women do not undergo if they plan on having an abortion.
This brings me to my own arguments rather than the evidentially based ones above.
Further: there are several situations in which abortion is considered to be an option.
Endangering the health of the mother
If childbirth is endangering the health of the mother, many mothers do consider this to be a viable option for the sake of their own lives. If the child has no chance of living outside of the womb and the birth is causing the life of the mother to be at risk - it seems as if an abortion at any stage would be crucial to the survival of the mother. Unfortunately, not all places allow abortions to be done when the woman is in danger. In Ireland, a woman cannot have an abortion. It is appalling that these women are not being considered when they face a life and death situation.
When the mother is mature enough to realize she cannot take care of the child
Sometimes, when an unwanted pregnancy occurs, the mother must take it into her own hands to realize if she is ready for the child. She isn’t always be selfish when she has an abortion. She may have other obligations to her family that she must fulfill and simply can’t if she were to raise a child. Raising a child is a huge undertaking and it isn’t for everyone. Also, if the woman isn’t at a stage in life she believes she can support a child, then it is in her own interests, the child’s interest, and society’s best interest that the woman is able to take control over her own body.
When the woman is raped
When a woman is raped, and circumstances forbid the woman from being able to take care of the child - it is the man’s fault after all, if it is a rape case - then the woman must decide whether she wants to keep a baby whose father is a rapist and whether she wants to take care of a child she had no control over of having conceived.
Some may argue that adoption or other options are available after the pregnancy if the child is unwanted and cannot be cared for by the mother. Obviously for some this is an option - but for others it simply isn’t an option to see your own child being raised by someone else.
The politics of abortion
Abortion highly political in that in many ways it’s about control.
Women want control over their own bodies and they don’t want a man or a government telling them that that’s how they should be using their bodies. Women are women not vessels to produce children. Women are more than just that.
The risks of having children are greater than what’s realised. It takes a severe toll on one’s body and it’s at least a nine month process that really does cause severe health risks.
Another issue is what determines life. A fetus isn’t alive until a certain stage of the pregnancy. The definition of life is long and complex and stretches beyond the reaches of this specific round or even debate. It has been a debate philosophers have discussed through time and millennia.
The final argument you mentioned about, ‘Abortion is a risk because what if that fetus becomes the next president, a wonderful brain surgeon, or possibly will find the cure for cancer?’ is not a very strong one because you could easily say the opposite. What if the child becomes an evil dictator or a mass murderer? We can’t know that. It’s out of our control. I’m not using the argument back, I’m just showing that the argument is very weak.
I look forward to a reply.
- One point you made was that the baby does not feel pain. I am sorry but this is inccorrect. There have been many scientific studies proving that babies do feel pain. Elisha Peters, president of Pro Abortion Organization even stated that "The argument that babies do not feel pain has been ruled out since that it has been proven that they do."
- When discussing the health of the mother, unfortunately studies have shown that there are much greater risks when conducting an abortion than actually giving birth. Abortion is an unnatural process. Women are supposed to reproduce if they are able to. Killing one's young when it is inside the human body is not natural. Please do not get me wrong; pregnancy can be very dangerous! There can be many complications, but according to abortion.gov, there is a 70% higher complication rate with abortion vs. natural birth and c section.
- When discussing the matter that some women cannot take care of their child, I ABSOLUBTELY AGREE WITH YOU. But, there are other options for the children. We do not have to look at these children as a threat, instead we need to look at them as humans with rights. There are many great foster care and adoption services provided throughout the entire world.
- Rape is absolubtely horrible! We can also gorup rape with incest. Most people do not understand that abortion does not un rape a woman. It brings more violence to the woman's tragic event. There was a woman, Rebecca Keisling who was conceived in a rape act and she stated "Should I have received the death penalty for the acts of my father?"
- When discussing women's rights- what are that baby's rights? You said that a fetus is not considered a baby until a certain stage in pregnancy. What stage would you consider that? Is it when the baby is born? Some babies are aboarted when they can survive outside of the womb!
- Another point I would like to make is that according to abortion.gov, 45% of abortion babies come out alive- a living person. Then, they are left there to die. Wouldn't you consider that murder? I would! It is a living creature. Sometimes, they are even killed by the abortionist.
Look forward to hearing your argument.
-You are correct, babies do feel pain - after around 20 weeks of pregnancy. Before then the brain and nervous system simply haven’t developed enough for pain to be felt. Around 20 weeks of pregnancy is around the point when it is potentially (but very unlikely) possible that a fetus can live outside of the womb. After 24 or so weeks, it is extremely difficult and rare to have an abortion done.
-Here is a study showing the mortality rate of those with legally induced abortions in comparison to those who have undergone childbirth.
“The pregnancy-associated mortality rate among women who delivered live neonates was 8.8 deaths per 100,000 live births. The mortality rate related to induced abortion was 0.6 deaths per 100,000 abortions. In the one recent comparative study of pregnancy morbidity in the United States, pregnancy-related complications were more common with childbirth than with abortion.
Legal induced abortion is markedly safer than childbirth. The risk of death associated with childbirth is approximately 14 times higher than that with abortion. Similarly, the overall morbidity associated with childbirth exceeds that with abortion.”
-Some women would simply prefer not to have their child adopted. Others would rather not have to endure 9 months of pregnancy, deal with inquisitive family and friends, and go through a lengthy legal process which can take a number of months in order for their child to be adopted. If she didn’t want the child in the first place, then going through all of the above might cause her more emotional harm than if she had the abortion in the first trimester.
No one is blaming the fetus for being conceived. Rape just so happens to cause some unwanted pregnancies. It’s not the fetuses fault it will always be the man’s fault in these cases.
“89-92% of all abortions happen during the first trimester, prior to the 13th week of gestation (AGI/CDC). In 2011, 7.3% of all abortions occurred between 14-20 weeks' gestation; 1.4% occurred ≥21 weeks' gestation (CDC)”
-The baby does legally have rights after around 20 weeks of the pregnancy when it is possible that they can survive outside of the womb. As we can see from the statistics provided above, most abortions happen when the fetus simply can’t survive outside of the womb at all. 1.4% of abortions are done when the baby might survive outside of the womb, but many of these cases are when the mother’s life is in danger or the fetus is so deformed it can’t survive out of the womb.
-Finally, how do you define life? I personally don’t think science can answer when or whether something is really truly alive or not.
-One more thing: if abortions were illegal, the situation would become that women would go to illegal and shady places to get their abortions done. It wouldn’t be safe for the women whatsoever and would cause a very dangerous situation if fetuses were aborted after 20 weeks. I would not want my daughter, if I had one, to then have to go to a crooked so called abortion clinic that wasn’t sterilized and didn’t have full procedures to protect her. I am happier to live in a society that my potential daughter could have an abortion safely and ethically without feeling that her life could be in danger.
- When you are talking about death with childbirth vs. abortion, are you talking about the child's death or the mother's death. Becuase, of course there will be a higher death rate with abortion, being that death of the child is the objective of getting an abortion.
- Some women would not want their child to be adopted- given. But, do you honestly think that a woman spending nine months carrying a child can go against that child's 73 (an average) years of age?
- When you say that no one is blaming the fetus for being conceived- that is exactly my point! Why should we blame this child and see it as a threat, resulting in killing? Why don't we focus more on the person who did the act of rape? Why do many feel that conceived unwanted children are a threat?
- How do I define life? I do not believe that we need to look at numbers. Even the president of Pro Choice America said, "we fabricated numbers to add a dramatic touch." It does not matter which trimester a baby is born in- that baby will become a human some day. It just needs time a nourishment. I do believe life of a human being begins at conception. Life has always been in the presence of the father, then transffered to the mother. But, when a sperm meets an egg, that is the beginning of life.
- When discussing making abortions illegal, many propose ideas to help young people find a better alternative than abortion. So many organizations such as planned parenthood are not discussing and giving these young people all the information needed. I quote a Planned Parenthood nurse from Illinois speaking to a 14 year old girl, "Abortion is the only way out of this. I do not care what happened to you, how old the man was- it doesn't matter. What matters is that we take this parasite out of your body."
-Just because less women die from pregnancy in Ireland doesn't mean that having a baby in Ireland is safer than having an abortion. It just means that less women die from pregnancy in Ireland than in other countries. It's not relevant to the abortion argument. Ireland allows freedom of movement for those women who do want to have an abortion. If you're Irish and have an abortion in another country other than Ireland, you"re not breaking any Irish laws. Many women actually go to the UK to have abortions done.
-When I am discussing childbirth vs abortion I am pertaining to the number of women who die in childbirth. It is 14 times more likely that a woman will die from childbirth than from having an abortion. It shows it is safer for the mother to have an abortion than it is to continue with childbirth.
-When sperm meets an egg - this will not always result in a human being. Complications happen. 10% to 25% of pregnancies within the first trimester end in a miscarriage. This can increase to 50% of pregnancies when a woman is over 45.
I also think it's a woman's choice whether or not she wants to have an abortion or whether she wants to give her child up for adoption. It is not fair on the mother to have to have her body used as a vessel for nine months (considering she is 14 times more likely to die) with a fetus inside her that she doesn't want.
What do we do about women who are suicidal and want to kill themselves and the fetus inside them?
It seems a bit of an infringement on the woman's rights to her own body if she were told that she had to carry out the pregnancy when she obviously doesn't want it. The idea is that she shouldn't be used merely as a vessel for the unborn fetus.
-My point here is that no one is blaming the fetus. The fetus is merely a consequence of a man's bad actions. It doesn't have anything to do with blaming the fetus at all. By aborting a fetus before 20 weeks means that the fetus has no guarantees, even if the pregnancy continues, that the fetus will end up being a healthy living human being. Many children die during childbirth or shortly after. The chances as a whole that the process ends up with a healthy human being is actually slim. Considering this, don't we want to have children born into a world with parents who are ready and able to take care of them rather than have children born to parents who simply aren't ready and might even hurt the child?
-Granted, of course there will be certain individuals within certain organisations that might have very strong opinions on what they think is right. They sometimes force their opinions on others life decisions and I don't think that's right at all. I agree with you there. However, this isn't the majority of organisations or individuals within those organisations. Planned Parenthood isn't against having children - it's about allowing men and women choices for parenthood or potentially to not even be parents.
-Going back to my final point from the previous round - women and girls should not be subjected to having back street abortions just because the law tells them what they should do with their bodies. Hundreds of women in Ireland died in the 1930's from backstreet abortions. Women in many other parts of the world continue to die from backstreet abortions. That's why they made it legal in Ireland to travel to the UK or other countries to have an abortion done elsewhere. Other countries have made abortions legal because of how dangerous it would be for a mother who doesn't want the fetus inside her, to have an abortion in an unsafe, unsterilized clinic. It is estimated that 20 million unsafe abortions worldwide are performed annually. Most of these are not in countries like the US or anywhere in Europe, but in developing countries. I feel much happier and safer to live in a society that I don't have to make the choice between having a backstreet abortion or having a child I don't want.
First of all, I would just like to thank you for being civil during this debate and actually using fact vs. opinion.
I am not quite sure whose information is correct, but acccording to Life News, more women die from abortion vs. childbirth. Here is a link that I found with a wonderful graph showing these rates.
You are absolubtely right that there are many pregnancies that end in misscariage. I saw on Pregnancy Life that 10% of pregnancies do end in miscarriage. But, what happens to the other 90%? Do they just die?
When you are talking about it being the mother's choice, do you think it is okay for a woman to have an abortion during the second or third trimester? Why or why not? According to Glen Beck news, 67% of people believe it is okay for a person to have an abortion during the first trimester. Then, when asked if it is okay to have an abortion during the second or third trimester, only 15% said that it was okay. If it is really the woman's choice and if you claim to be pro-choice, don't you think the woman should be able to have an abortion at any stage during the pregnancy.
Then we get into the extreme case of, well, if a woman is allowed to have an abortion during pregnancy, don't you think the woman should be able to kill her child after it is born? You know, since it is "her choice..."
Let me ask you, do you think that it is okay to kill a child one minute before birth? Well, you argue that it isn't a human, it is a fetus. Is there a difference in the baby one minute before birth or one minute after birth? It is completely phycostic to say that it is not a human when it is the same thing, separated by the lining of a placenta.
- That is a strong argument when discussing abortion, but there is already tons of back street abortion occuring now. But, this honestly dwindles down to natural selection. A woman may go into a back street abortion knowing what she is doing, just like she knows she is going to have unprotected sex before concenption of the baby. The issue is that most women know the risks at hand when going into these types of dangerous abortions. Should the child die because of this? And with suicidal women carrying child, this unfortunately occurs now and I do not know how that relates to our argument of abortion.
- I basically would just like to ask; where are your moral values? Do you think a person should die in the place of another? I do respect your opinion. I can understand where you are coming from. But, being a woman, I just want to think that what if my child is a woman? Should she have rights too? Absolubtely.
Thank you for the opportunity to have this debate! It has been a really interesting experience!
-Truthfully, it’s hard to tell with studies which ones are right and which ones aren’t. Mine could be incorrect - I don’t have a way of verifying completely either source, to be honest. The source that was cited was conducted in 2012 and was published by the Obstetrics & Gynecology journal.
-My point in saying that some pregnancies end in miscarriages was just meant to highlight that not all pregnancies are successful and end up with a healthy living baby. In saying that - ending a pregnancy, say in the first trimester, simply means that some cells that would not have formed much at that point, is not going to mean that the doctor performing the abortion or the woman having the abortion is a murderer.
-I do not believe that the choice to have an abortion has to be an all or nothing situation. Perhaps, the law could allow women to have an abortion up to say the third trimester, then after say that they can only have an abortion for a medical emergency. There are options other than a full ‘yes to all abortions at anytime’ to the complete opposite which would just be dangerous ‘no abortions whatsoever even if the mother’s life is in danger.’ It doesn’t have to be that way - and currently, it isn’t. In the US and the UK, women can have abortions up until the 24th week - beyond that it is for a medical emergency only. (The reason because the fetus can live as a living baby without the need of the womb - which before then it couldn’t.)
If a woman were to kill her child after birth, it would be infanticide (really homicide) because the child is outside of her womb and not in her body. The point being that the fetus is in her womb and as such is causing an incredible life threatening strain on her body. While the fetus is still in her womb, it is up to the mother and the doctors what can and should be done. When the child is out, then it is a being that is separate from the mother and not reliant on the mother. Then it is a person and has even greater rights than it had as a fetus.
-A woman so desperate to have a back-street abortion is not likely to be someone who is knowledgeable about the risks. Some of these back street abortions are done on young vulnerable women. Not all women know the risks of having an abortion and not all women know the risks of pregnancies. Not all young women even know the risks of having children if they were to engage in sexual intercourse. More education is needed for all, in this regard.
-I do believe an unborn child does have rights at the point that they are able to live outside of the womb. Before this point (and it’s not an automatic point that just randomly happens, but a stage in which occurs gradually) the fetus is not able to sustain itself outside of the womb and is reliant on the body of the mother. Scientifically this isn’t likely that they can live outside of the womb unless they are 23 weeks old or older.
-In conclusion, from the arguments above it seems that abortion should be legal in order to prevent vulnerable women from having to go through a traumatic back street abortion and to potentially be criminalized for it. A fetus has rights at the point that it is able to live outside of the mother’s womb. Before then, it is up to the mother because it is the mother’s life that the fetus is reliant upon. Finally, abortion does not have to be an all or nothing situation. Abortion laws as they are now in the US and the UK do make some sense and should remain that way.