The Instigator
boredinclass
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
MrCarroll
Con (against)
Winning
8 Points

Abortion

Do you like this debate?NoYes+2
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
MrCarroll
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/19/2011 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 861 times Debate No: 16041
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (0)
Votes (2)

 

boredinclass

Pro

First round is for acceptance.
Abortion- the process of removing a fetus from a mothers womb
MrCarroll

Con

I accept.
Are we debating that abortion should be made illegal, that it is morally wrong, or both?
Debate Round No. 1
boredinclass

Pro

I would like to start with a morality debate on abortion. I hope my opponent agrees to such.

Let's begin. I would like to start with my framework for this debate.
I value the philosiphy- utilitarianism[1]
The greatest good for the greatest number. Basically that the ends justify the means and that if we have to sacrifice something for the best of society, we should go through with it.

contention 1: abortion significantly reduces crime.
Just read the article, it's long but it'll explain it. basically if abortion reduces crime it's good. [2]

Contention 2: stem cell research
Stem cell research has great potential in our society, and for the time being, has helped stopping brain tumours, fake blood transfusions, and helping diabetes. It is the only potential training ground for testing. [3]

Contention 3:teen pregnancy

Quality over quantity, the number of teen pregnancies has skyrocketed. nearly 1/3 of girls become pregnant before the age of 20.[4] and many of them are dropping out of school because of such[5][6]. This helps all society by creating a more educated population.

Due to time restraints I can't clarify more this round, but I will expand on these points

[1]http://en.wikipedia.org...
[2] http://escholarship.org...
[3]http://www.stemcellresearchcures.com...
[4]http://www.livestrong.com...
[5]http://www.aclu-wa.org...
[6]http://www.huffingtonpost.com...
MrCarroll

Con

Readers, this is precisely what I feared would occur if my opponent brought up the moral argument for abortion. We now have my opponent's perspective on morality, utilitarianism, and it turns out that my perspective on morality is something completely different. However, I believe I have the advantage in this situation for several reasons, the first being that utilitarianism does not actually define what is moral. One may object to this claiming, it is "the greatest good for the greatest number;" but what is "good?" So here, we have not defined what is intrinsically right and wrong or good and bad. Secondly, utilitarian "morals" go against what every human knows is moral. In other words, I can think up a host of moral quandaries that show why utilitarianism fails. With the definition of "moral" proposed by this theory, we can justify Naziism, which was entirely based upon furthering the Aryan human race at the expense of the Jewish race, deemed to be evolutionary inferior. Theoretically, this would have been the greatest good for the greatest number, which were the Germans. We can also take the instance of rape, something that we all cannot help but condemn. Let's say an orphan girl, one who had no ties to anyone, is taken and raped by a man. One may say, that is immoral since her suffering outweighs the offender's pleasure. But if two men to abuse her, then we can say that their pleasure finally outweighs the suffering of the girl. I, on the other hand, cannot think of something more evil.

I would also like to point out that most of the readers here will have a different view of morality than utilitarianism, something closer to mine. Even if the reader believes morality is subjective, we may conclude that our society agrees murder is wrong, therefore, murder in our society is wrong. I will tie in murder and abortion later on, but for now, I will respond to my opponent's contentions.

C1: Abortion significantly reduces crime
a. I would like to point out that this article opens by stating, "we explore in detail the theoretical link between legalization of abortion... and subsequent drops in crime..." Theoretical meaning that while abortion may coincide with drops in crime, there are a number of other factors that could have influenced it. Although the article gives some theoretical mechanisms of why the two correlate, it has nothing to say why other factors could not have caused drops in crime. I do not necessarily need to respond to any of this article, as the article in itself is not really my opponent's argument.

b. My opponent states, "if abortion reduces crime it's good." Again, speaking of utilitarianism, we don't actually know if abortion is moral just because crime rates drop. If abortion is inherently a Wrong, which I suggest it is, then is it more Wrong then the crimes being committed? In other words, if abortion is essentially a crime, does it justify crime? Let us say African Americans commit more crime that any other race–I understand this is not necessarily true, but say it is. Would it be moral to eliminate the race? According to utilitarian thinking this would be considered moral–"If it reduces crime it's good"–yet I would strongly disagree with this action and I hope my opponent would too.

C2: Stem cell research
a. I am guessing my opponent is speaking of abortion when he says, "It is the only potential training ground for testing." I will be quick to point out this is not the case, and there are many different ways of stem cell research that do not involve abortion. However, stem cell research is a different issue then what we are currently debating, and this is nothing but a red herring.

C3: Teen pregnancy
a. My opponent claims, "many [teens] are dropping out of school because of [pregnancy]. This [abortion?] helps all society by creating a more educated population." Like the first contention, my opponent claims abortion, something that could very well be a Wrong, is suddenly a Right because there are "good" consequences. As a utilitarian, we must weigh the good consequences with the bad. Is the taking of an innocent life good when it saves the education of a not so innocent one? I would say, not at all. If a mother kills her one year old because she cannot afford her child justified? By the law she is certainly not justified, but by utilitarianism she may very well be carrying out a moral action. After all, she may starve if she keeps giving all the food to her child. I could spend years going over all the predicaments utilitarianism faces, but I will move on to my own arguments on the issue.

I have in multiple instances claimed abortion is essentially a Wrong, and I will now explain my logic. Let's take the first thing off the top of our heads that is considered Wrong: murder. Now we must define murder and explain why it is wrong.

Murder – kill intentionally and with premeditation [1]

Actually, I don't like this definition. I don't think everyone thinks it immoral to "kill intentionally and with premeditation." More specifically, it is immoral to kill an innocent life intentionally and with premeditation. I would sincerely pray, readers, that everyone deep down inside agrees with me on this assertion. If any of you, readers, saw an innocent four year old, killed by some murderer, for whatever reason, I am certain that you would condemn that person for their action. If anyone believes in morals, objective or not, I am confident we can agree murder of an innocent human life is immoral. That being said, we must decide whether abortion is the intentional killing of an innocent human life.

"I think we have deluded ourselves into believing that people don't know that abortion is killing. So any pretense that abortion is not killing is a signal of our ambivalence, a signal that we cannot say yes, it kills a fetus" [2] Who said that you ask? None other than Faye Wattelton, Planned Parenthood's longest reigning president. So we have the first part of the equation, intentional killing. One interesting point, is that this implies the fetus is obviously alive. I think this is probably the most obvious conclusion mankind has come up with in the past few years.

Now the next step in the equation is decided whether this fetus is a human. The Law of Biogenesis states that life-forms produce other life-forms after their own kind. From this we can conclude that we aren't dealing with a frog or a monkey. I can think of no other creature this fetus could be but a human. This fetus has the genetic code of an individual human, half of the father and half of the mother. It is entirely unique and no other creature, human or animal, will ever have this specific genetic code. There is nothing unscientific about this. It is indeed a individual human life, and abortions are the dismembering of it. Therefore, we can safely say, we have all the elements of murder, which is killing an innocent (I assumed this was a given) human life. From this, we can conclude that abortion is essentially a Wrong, an immoral, unethical action that occurs every day with out a thought.

Thank you, I look forward to my opponent's response.

[1] http://wordnetweb.princeton.edu...
[2] Faye Wattleton, "Speaking Frankly," Ms., May / June 1997, Volume VII, Number 6, 67.
Debate Round No. 2
boredinclass

Pro

boredinclass forfeited this round.
MrCarroll

Con

Extend arguments.
Debate Round No. 3
boredinclass

Pro

boredinclass forfeited this round.
MrCarroll

Con

Its a shame that this debate didn't develop into anything. For obvious reasons, please vote Con.
Debate Round No. 4
No comments have been posted on this debate.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by shooterboss 5 years ago
shooterboss
boredinclassMrCarrollTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: A clear win. Pro, for reasons unknown, forfeited most of the rounds. Con's counterarguments were never challenged.
Vote Placed by quarterexchange 5 years ago
quarterexchange
boredinclassMrCarrollTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro forfeited and Con countered Pros arguments