The Instigator
rougeagent21
Con (against)
Losing
146 Points
The Contender
TheSkeptic
Pro (for)
Winning
148 Points

Late term abortion is morally correct in every situation

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/10/2009 Category: Health
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 7,660 times Debate No: 7768
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (76)
Votes (47)

 

rougeagent21

Con

I stand in firm negation of the resolution. As my opponent is affirmative, the burden of proof lies on him/her. I will allow my opponent to speak first. To clarify the debate I offer the following definitions:

Late term abortion-Also called voluntary abortion. the removal of an embryo or fetus from the uterus in order to end a pregnancy, done in the late stages of pregnancy.

Moral-of, pertaining to, or concerned with the principles or rules of right conduct or the distinction between right and wrong; ethical: moral attitudes.

If you accept this debate, you agree to use these definitions. Good luck to whoever accepts!
TheSkeptic

Pro

I thank my opponent for creating this debate, and contrary to the woes of those in the comment sections, I'm sure I won't fall for whatever sly trick my opponent may have used ;D

{quote}As my opponent is affirmative, the burden of proof lies on him/her. I will allow my opponent to speak first.{endquote}

Untrue. We BOTH have the burden of proof (of sorts). Not only, but since you are the instigator, in this debate then it could said that you have an even heavier burden. The positions of PRO or CON are arbitrary if a resolution can be worded differently. I know you love to do this trick, but it doesn't work.

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Fetuses' don't have rights
====================

Because a fetus is not self-aware, it does not have rights. Simple as that - it's brain is not fully developed to meet such a criteria. With no rights, there is no such thing as "murdering" it.

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Conclusion
====================

I will develop my argument when my opponent responds.
Debate Round No. 1
rougeagent21

Con

Alright, lets get started. I am not sure about this sly trick of yours, but it should be fun nonetheless.

"Untrue. We BOTH have the burden of proof (of sorts). Not only, but since you are the instigator, in this debate then it could said that you have an even heavier burden. The positions of PRO or CON are arbitrary if a resolution can be worded differently. I know you love to do this trick, but it doesn't work."
Ah, but you are wrong. The burden is on you to prove that abortion is correct in EVERY situation. If the negative can provide but one situation in which it is not, then I have won. I must only negate your options.

My opponent's only argument thus far is that a fetus has no rights. I disagree. If you kill a pregnant woman, you are charged with two murders. Can you murder something/someone that has no rights? No, it would not be considered murder if he/she/it had no rights. Obviously in this scenario, the fetus posses the right to life, for which the criminal will be punished for having infringed upon that right.

We have been referring to the being by an incorrect term. It is not a fetus but a human being. When the heart starts beating, life begins, and the baby is viable. So we now have a living human, and aborting it is killing it. Abortion stops a beating heart, plain and simple. If you abort a baby in the late stages of pregnancy, you are killing it. It had a beating heart, functioning brain, skeletal, respiratory, digestive, and other bodily systems. Aborting it stops all of these.
Because it causes the heart to stop, it is killing. Killing is certainly NOT morally correct, thus the resolution is negated. I await your response.

http://civilliberty.about.com...
http://www.apologeticspress.org...
TheSkeptic

Pro

I thank my opponent for starting this debate and I hope it turns out great! My opponent states it's my burden to prove abortion is morally correct in every situation - which, admittingly, is horrendously sly wording. However, I trusted my opponent to have the dignity to not make this debate a sham and it seems he has done as such. Good! Now we can a good argument going. Finally, while I agree that I have a burden, it shouldn't be a controversy that my opponent ALSO has a burden - to prove a situation in which the act of abortion is wrong.

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The right of a fetus - killing a pregnant woman
====================

{quote}If you kill a pregnant woman, you are charged with two murders.{endquote}

Really? Well even if that is so, this is no argument. Killing a pregnant woman should be ONE MURDER. However, do realize that part of the punishment may be that the parents did not originally want the fetus to die (abortion against their consent), so I suppose some part of the law may account for that (though it will be tricky).

My opponent's argument he relies simply on the fact that since a law exists in favor for anti-abortion (a way that it can be interpreted at least), then this serves as an argument. NO, that is an erroneous argument - a fallacy almost. There is a federal law/bill against gay marriage[1] - does that constitute as an argument against gay marriage? No. Just because something is legal or illegal does not make it right or wrong.

====================
The right of a fetus - stopping a heart beat
====================

My opponent now attempts to define a fetus - in late term pregnancies - as a human being. If he does succesfully, then he does indeed show abortion to be murder, and thus to be wrong. However, I will attack his premise that a late term fetus (for the sake of clarity, will just be known as a fetus) is a human being.

I argue that unless the fetus is a person, which is an entity that is rational and possess the adequate mental faculties to introspect, then abortion is okay. Human beings are persons, but persons are not always human beings. A person can come in the form of an alien or even in the form of a computer.

Because a fetus does NOT have the appropriate brain developments to be a person, it's forced death can't be considered murder.

{quote}When the heart starts beating, life begins...{endquote}

So plants are alive? Because they sure as hell don't have hearts.

{quote}Abortion stops a beating heart, plain and simple. If you abort a baby in the late stages of pregnancy, you are killing it. It had a beating heart, functioning brain, skeletal, respiratory, digestive, and other bodily systems. Aborting it stops all of these.{endquote}

Assuming that your abritrary definition of life is "when the heart starts beating" is even true, this is a fallacious claim. Just because something is ALIVE does not mean it's forced death is murder. Would killing a dog be called murder? Sure, it's contentious of whether or not it's moral, but would it be murder? Would killing a dog put me in jail for 25 years? I hardly think so.

As I have argued before, the requirement for murder is that the entity is a PERSON - an rational entity.

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Conclusion
====================

There isn't much left to say. I have countered my opponent's main argument with my own, and I await his response.

---References---
1. http://en.wikipedia.org...
Debate Round No. 2
rougeagent21

Con

Human Being- "consisting of members of the family Hominidae"

My opponent has consented in his last speech that if I prove a fetus to be a human being, then my claims are legitimate. Therefore, I only need to prove this in order to win. Please read on for my justification.

Most people understand that a frog never becomes an elephant. A frog is a frog. Then again, a tadpole is a tadpole. But is a tadpole a frog? Some folks would argue not: The tadpole has no lungs; it has gills. It has no legs; it has a tail. It looks and acts just like a fish. It can�€™t be a frog, can it? Well, it depends upon how you define the frog organism.

May we identify an organism as a frog purely on the basis of its morphology (physical form)? The biologist will say no. Three criteria are necessary for biological identification and morphology is only one of them. Physiology and genomics are the other two.

The biologist will not hesitate to affirm that the tadpole is, indeed, a frog. The living organism we call �€œfrog�€� (Rana catabiensis) undergoes profound morphological and physiological changes in the course of its lifecycle. Although these changes are radical, the genetic code - the DNA blueprint that defines this particular organism - never changes.

The biologist will tell you that a frog is a frog from the instant it first functions as an independent organism, regardless of the form it takes during the course of its development. It will be nothing other than a frog when it dies. An organism is never identified purely on the basis of its morphological or physiological state at any given point in its lifecycle. It would be like declaring the benchmark of life for the butterfly organism is the presence of wings and antennae and then, after examining the caterpillar, pronouncing that, because it has neither wings nor antennae, it is neither living nor a butterfly, despite the fact that it is a living organism with the genome of the butterfly and, if it is not killed before it completes its metamorphosis, will become nothing other than a butterfly.

The same thing applies to the unborn. He may not have a face. Or limbs. Or a developed brain. Or any features of a born human being.He is still a human being, biologically speaking.

Having proven a fetus to be a human being, I have won this debate. Unless my opponent can successfully refute this argument, then he has consented that the ballot goes to the negative. I now conclude my portion of the debate. Thank you.
TheSkeptic

Pro

I'm not sure what happened to my opponent. Perhaps he had private issues to deal with at home, or something happened to his internet. Whatever it was, it lead to a lackluster argument being used in his last round - how depressing. How is it lackluster? Not only does it ignore my main argument, he actually copy pastes the vast majority of his argument from the following website: http://www.manlyrash.com...

It was quite easy to suspect and find that he copypasted his argument. Not only did his writing style change, and that his argument completely ignored my own point, but he actually didn't change one bit of it. By Googling the first line of his argument, "Most people understand that a frog never becomes an elephant", I was able to find the website on the first search.

Now I won't ignore his argument, I assure you that I will refute it after this lengthy introduction. However, I just want to point out the intellectual dishonesty of my what my opponent has done. Even if we were to presume that he had more pressing matters at home, he could've at least cited the website he stole from. But I speak too much. Let's get on with the awesome philosophical rebuttals:

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Is a fetus a human being?
===================

My opponent, or more accurately the website he stole from, uses a quirky argument rooted in biology. He claims that because a fetus is biologically similar, if not identical, to a human being, then killing a fetus is like murdering a human being. This is unequivocaly WRONG, and I'm dissapointed to see that my main argument against this was ignored.

Sure, a fetus may have the DNA of a human. In fact, in the latter stages it starts to look like a human. However, there is still a main difference between a fetus and a human - brain development. In no stage of a pregnacy does a fetus' brain have the capacity that humans have. It can't introspect, nor can it have rudimentary emotions and abstract thinking. As I argued in my previous argument, if a fetus does not have the mental requirements to be a person - defined philosophically as a rational, sapient entity - then it is not murder and therefore not immoral to kill a fetus.

====================
Conclusion
====================

Really, my opponent has given nothing new in his last round. I was expecting for him to develop on the importance of instrospection and such, but it seems his response was anticlimatic of sorts. Since he has yet to refute my main argument, the vote is clear. Vote PRO.
Debate Round No. 3
76 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 31 through 40 records.
Posted by rougeagent21 5 years ago
rougeagent21
How dare you! Besides, my argument negated his whole "fetuses aren't people" argument. Honestly, back off man!
Posted by NItEMArE129 5 years ago
NItEMArE129
Since Skeptic's whole point was that fetus aren't people (because of introspection) then your argument's are moot. Not to mention that I'm fairly suspicious that rougeagent is manipulating the voting system either by A). having multiple accounts or B). his friends that vote for him are ridiculously bias.

And if wikipedia's not ok, then I'm pretty sure plaigarism should be punishable by law. Which it is.
Posted by rougeagent21 5 years ago
rougeagent21
"So first, you admit that you purposely attempted to word the resolution so you could have an unfair edge to start out with? That's just intellectually repugnant."

As has been explained in some of my other debates, I am on a quest for knowledge. Difficult wording lets me understand my opponent's arguments, even in some rash circumstances. Repugnant? Absolutely not. Need I remind you that you accepted the debate?

"Secondly, you gave no arguments supporting your resolution, only supporting anti-abortion."

Yes, that was my job in the debate.

"You gave no clear argument for why it's not moral in EVERY situation. You just argued against abortion in general."

If I can prove that it is not moral, then I need not provide any further evidence. If you would like, I can give you examples. Would that satisfy your criterion?
Posted by TheSkeptic 5 years ago
TheSkeptic
"Well thanks. Mostly because of the wording of the resolution. In EVERY situation? Really?"

So first, you admit that you purposely attempted to word the resolution so you could have an unfair edge to start out with? That's just intellectually repugnant.

Secondly, you gave no arguments supporting your resolution, only supporting anti-abortion. You gave no clear argument for why it's not moral in EVERY situation. You just argued against abortion in general.
Posted by rougeagent21 5 years ago
rougeagent21
Well thanks. Mostly because of the wording of the resolution. In EVERY situation? Really?

(Manners still apply online, thats why there is a "conduct" section to vote on)
Posted by TheSkeptic 5 years ago
TheSkeptic
"wikipedia is not a valuable source."

I gave that for references to what the thing I was referring to was. It was for your benefit - not to back up a fact.

"Rougeagent wins. For more reasons than that but also because of it."

And why is that? I can't believe I'm even losing this debate - his arguments were so horrible.
Posted by resolutionsmasher 5 years ago
resolutionsmasher
wikipedia is not a valuable source. Rougeagent wins. For more reasons than that but also because of it.
Posted by rougeagent21 5 years ago
rougeagent21
Whoa there, lets keep this PG here guys! ;)
Posted by NItEMArE129 5 years ago
NItEMArE129
I second that. But I think the people need to both find each other either A) hot, B) attractive personality wise, C) hot, D) good in bed, or E) REALLY HOT.
Posted by Ragnar_Rahl 5 years ago
Ragnar_Rahl
If everybody was abstinent, we'd all die.

Therefore, people should be required to have sex :)
47 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Vote Placed by cstidham 1 year ago
cstidham
rougeagent21TheSkepticTied
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Reasons for voting decision: hi
Vote Placed by Chuz-Life 1 year ago
Chuz-Life
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro made the mistake of calling a human fetus a "person" but not "a human being." Con fails to cite the fact that many laws and even some Constitutions regard recognize they are one and the same. Con wins on more factual and convincing arguments and Pro scores one on conduct.
Vote Placed by 1dustpelt 2 years ago
1dustpelt
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Vote Placed by Ore_Ele 2 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: While I'm against late term abortion, I do see that there are some legitimate reasons for it (life of the mother). However, moving on to the debate, Con not once addressed personhood. Con argued that a fetus is biologically a human, but never argued that it was a person or defended how it had rights. Pro said from the beginning that rights are tied to personhood, and Con kind of ignored that, rather than challenged it right up front (as he should have). He sadly also never addressed morals.
Vote Placed by Zaradi 2 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Con for arguments and spelling.
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