On balance, abortion is immoral
Debate Rounds (4)
I am challenging triangle.128k to a debate regarding the morality of abortion. He seems quite convinced that abortion is morally justifiied, so I anticipate a lively intellectual discourse with him.
Con will argue that abortion is morally justified, I will argue that it is not. The burden of proof is shared.
Abortion: 'a medical procedure used to end a pregnancy and cause the death of the fetus' (1)
Immoral: 'not morally good or right' (2)
No excessive argumentation regarding semantics.
Forfeiture constitutes a loss.
No personal attacks.
I would like to note that I am only for early-term abortions. I don't justify with abortion if the fetus is relatively old.
On my opponent's request, this debate will actually concern whether or not abortion should be legal. Nevertheless, morality will still have a major part of the debate, considering many of our laws are shaped around moral sentiments.
Note that I will make the following concession, that I accept that abortion should be legal in cases where it is necessary to save the mother from death or severe physical injury. This is because the killing of abortion starts to be considered as proportionate self-defence, which I believe is morally and therefore legally acceptable.
Nonetheless, only 0.00014% (1) of abortions in the past ten years in the UK have been to save the mothers life. It is absurd to suggest that we should make the other 99.99986% of abortions legal to allow for such a negligible minority of cases, especially considering that in every single one of these cases a human life is destroyed unjustly.
My argument takes the following form of premises and conclusions:
P1: A human foetus is a human being
P2: It is wrong to kill a human being
P3: An abortion kills a human foetus
C1: It is wrong to have an abortion
P4: Wrong acts should not be legal
C2: Abortion should not be legal.
This argument is deductive, which is to say that the conclusions follow logically from the premises. All I need to do now is justify the premises.
Consider the definition of 'human being':
'any individual of the genus Homo, esp. a member of the species Homo sapiens.' (2)
Firstly, a human foetus is an individual organism; it has unique DNA with a distinct body.
Secondly, a human foetus is a member of the species Homo sapiens because it has DNA that pertains to this species.
Therefore, a human foetus is a human being.
The US Senate report on Senate Bill 158 summarised this premise:
'Physicians, biologists, and other scientists agree that conception marks the beginning of the life of a human being - a being that is alive and is a member of the human species. There is overwhelming agreement on this point in countless medical, biological, and scientific writings.' (3)
This premise is somewhat more challenging to verify. First we must consider why killing human beings is wrong.
It is a hard question, as many take it as indisputable fact that homicide is wrong, but it seems that there must be a particular reason why we all share this sentiment.
But when one thinks about it, it becomes apparent that the reason that homicide is wrong is because it denies someone their future life.
This is demonstrated by how people often mourn the dead by saying: 'He had so much to live for!' or 'He had his whole life ahead of him!'.
Furthermore, if one was to be diagnosed with cancer and given 2 weeks to live, probably the main reason why the patient would feel saddened would be that they feel disappointment with the prospect of missing out on a future life.
So killing human beings is wrong because it denies them of a future life. Even if this future life can seem to be undesirable, it is still valuable insofar as it has the potential to be desirable.
For example, the future of a homeless person may look bleak, but the future life is still valuable because it has the potential to be desirable, through the autonomous deliberation of the individual.
Therefore, as pretty much all human beings have a future life with the capacity to be desirable, and that killing is the removal of this future life, then we can conclude that the killing of human beings is wrong.
This is an uncontroversial premise, as it is entailed by the definitions that were accepted by my opponent in round 1.
This conclusion is a logical deduction from P1, P2 and P3.
Immoral acts are immoral because they generally share some negative trait - namely the decrease in the general welfare of all parties involved. In other words, if there are two actions, X & Y, then if Y causes a general decrease in the welfare of the involved parties, then Y is immoral.
So to summarise, immoral acts are such because they harm the welfare of others'.
Now, consider that the role of government is to promote the welfare of its citizens (as it is democratically elected by them). If legalising something will cause a general increase in welfare, then it ought to be legalised. Conversely, if something will cause a general decrease in welfare, then it ought to be prohibited up until the point at which further prohibition would decrease the general welfare.
Therefore, as immoral acts decrease the general welfare of society and those within it, such acts ought to be legally prohibited.
This conclusion logically follows from C1 and P4.
This valid argument, which I have sufficiently defended, demonstrates why abortion should not be legal.
(3) Kaczor, Christopher 'The Edge of Life: Human Dignity and Contemporary Bioethics' p48 (available on Google Books - http://bit.ly...)
triangle.128k forfeited this round.
As explained in the comments, my opponent unfortunately missed the deadline for posting his argument. But as I wish to continue the debate, I have allowed him to post his round 2 arguments in the comments. Here is the link: http://pastebin.com...
I will now refute Con's arguments.
My opponent argues that abortion is justified in cases of rape in order to prevent the woman from suffering the pregnancy.
Nobody denies that having to carry the child of your rapist will be probably be mentally unsettling, but in order for this to be shown to be a justification for abortion it must be demonstrated that this is a less preferable event than the killing of the foetus.
In cases of rape, we have two beings whose welfare we are obliged to recognise. Between having an abortion and not having an abortion, the results are:
1. Someone will undergo nine months of unwanted pregnancy
2. Someone will be killed
The latter is evidently a worse consequence, at least on a utilitarian basis. If someone is killed then they have their whole future life eliminated whereas undergoing nine months of unwanted pregnancy is a temporary period of physical discomfort.
So in this case, any suffering of the mother is the lesser of the two evils when compared with the killing of the foetus. Hence abortion isn't justified in cases of rape.
Con's second point is that a "rape-child" (for want of a better phrase) would suffer if it is born. Yet even if we do know for certain that the child's life will be made miserable because of its parentage (which we definitely do not), the proposition that we are justified in killing 'rape children' to prevent them from suffering has absurd conclusions, namely that we would be morally and legally obliged to kill anyone if we perceived that their life would contain suffering.
Moreover, the fact that the majority of rape children are living ordinary lives and are not suicidal is testament to the fact that they prefer the chance to live their life as opposed to being killed in order to spare them potential suffering.
This argument is an apt reminder of the eugenicist roots of the pro-abortion movement. (1)
The truth is that if we are justified in aborting people with diseases whilst they are inside the womb, then we are justified in killing them outside the womb, as the aim of removing the disease is achieved irrespective of the location of the diseased person.
So the absurd implication of eugenics is that we would be obliged to kill anyone with undesirable genes, as this would improve the genepool. I wouldn't merely be justified to kill someone with cystic fibrosis, I would be obliged to. If I did not walk into a hospital and shoot all the genetically ill patients, then I would be acting immorally.
This absurdity shows that we are not justified in killing human beings with the pretence of improving the genepool.
Con opines that everyone has the right to be born healthy, but he does not explain how this right supersedes the fundamental right to life. With Con's logic, I could kill an ill person and justify it by proclaiming that everyone has the right to be healthy.
I accept the premise of Con's statement that consciousness is not present in young foetuses, but he does not cogently explain exactly why this affects the justifiability of abortion. So far, saying that a foetus is not conscious is a red herring, as it is not demonstrated as to why this should make abortion any more or less justified.
It would seem that lack of consciousness does not permit killing, as there is no reason why killing an unconscious person is anymore justified than killing a conscious person. Whether someone is conscious at present does not affect whether they will go on to live a future life, which is the reason why killing is wrong in the first place (explained in round 2). If I kill an unconscious person, then it is no legally valid defence to claim that the person was unconscious.
Therefore, the fact that a young foetus is unconscious does not do anything to justify abortion.
Abortion & murder
There are a plethora of flaws in this argument. Firstly, the fact that a foetus is not a fully developed human is irrelevant in regards to whether it is justified to kill it.
A teenager is not a fully developed human, yet this does not mean that it is justified to kill teenagers.
Consciousness is also irrelevant. Is it justified to kill a teenager in a comatose state? Of course not.
Secondly, Con fails to see the clear distinction between a sperm and a foetus. The latter is an actual human being that will go on to live a future life, the former has the potential to form a human being, and as such will not go on to live a future life (the sperm ceases to exist at fertilisation).
Hence the killing of a foetus is not permissible, whereas the killing of a sperm is permissible, as the latter is not being denied the opportunity to live a future human life. A sperm does not have a potential future human life, all it has the potential to do is fertilise an egg - nothing more.
Con states that morality is culturally relative and subjective, yet the only evidence he gives of this is that "people have different morality".
By this I think my opponent really means is that people have differing moral opinions, but it is a non sequitor that morality is subjective. All this shows is that people have different interpretations of morality, not that morality itself is subjective.
For example, people have differing opinions regarding science (such as evolution or aliens), yet it does not follow that science is subjective - only the interpretations are.
Furthermore, the assertion that the law shouldn't enforce morality is ridiculous. Virtually all laws do this and are not wrong to do so. For example, murder, theft, incest and torture are all illegal because they are immoral. It would be absurd to claim that the state shouldn't ban torture because it is forcing morality upon people.
This argument repeats the common sentiment that banning abortion would cause many women to die from unsafe abortions.
Yet there is no evidence that this would actually be the case, from this graph (http://prolifeaction.org...), note how the abortion death rate was declining at a very rapid debate before Roe vs Wade, largely because of medical developments. In the year before Roe vs Wade, only 39 people died from having an abortion. Of course these deaths are still tragic, but they are a tiny number of deaths compared to the millions of foetuses killed by legal abortion. (2)
Furthermore, the legality of abortion has no immediate affect on their safety, as the medical director of Planned Parenthood wrote:
'Ninety percent of illegal abortions are being done by physicians. Call them what you will, abortionists or anything else, they are still physicians, trained as such;... They must do a pretty good job if the death rate is as low as it is...Abortion, whether therapeutic or illegal, is in the main no longer dangerous because it is being done well by physicians ' (3)
Finally, it is not as if women are forced to have abortions (if they do, then the problem to be solved is the fact that they are being coerced) - the vast majority are seeking an abortion out of their own free choice. If they are choosing to have an illegal abortion, which is not 100% safe, and they are aware of the risks, then they have accepted the possibility that they may be harmed if they choose to have an abortion. Con's argument seems to imply that women have no choice in the matter.
Therefore, the argument fails because 1) millions more die if abortion is legal and 2) banning abortion wouldn't have a significant effect on women's health.
So, to conclude my rebuttals:
1. Even if a woman is raped, there is no reason why this should render the killing of a foetus as morally permissible. Being unintendedly pregnany is a lesser evil than being killed.
2. If abortion is justified in order to improve the human genepool, the justifications are not logically limited to the unborn. It would be justifiable, even expected, to kill born individuals for eugenic purposes. As this is a morally abhorrent and absurd conclusion, the initial premise (that we can justify killing in order to improve the genepool) must be false.
3. The unconsciousness of a foetus is a red herring, as it has not been demonstrated that there is a sound connection between present consciousness and permissibility of killing.
4. A sperm is fundamentally different to a foetus, in such a way that killing the former is permissible whereas killing the latter is not. A sperm will not go on to live a future life as a human being, whereas a foetus will go on to live a future life as a human being. As killing is wrong because it eliminates one's future life, it is wrong to kill a foetus but not wrong to kill a sperm.
5. It has not been proved that morality is subjective, and even if it was, there is nothing wrong with the government enforcing moral principles (if someone did say that it was wrong to do this, then according to their own logic they are enforcing their own morality on the government!).
Pretty much all laws are enforcements of moral principles, so why should it be out of the ordinary to enforce the moral principle that abortion is wrong?
6. Evidence demonstrates that it is not likely that there will be a significant increase in female fatalities if abortion was to be banned. Besides, it is the women's own choice to endanger herself so the government should not be obliged to protect her.
(3) M. Calderone, "Illegal abortion as a public health problem," American Journal of Public Health, July 1960, 50 (7): 949
Abortion is justified when a rape victim is justified from pregnancy. Philocat argues that abortion is not justifiable and is equivalant to a murder of a human being. However, getting rid of an undeveloped fetus/embryo that can't think, isn't conscious, and has no history of consciousness (unless you believe in reincarnation), isn't equal to having a teenage girl suffer.
If a teenage rape victim was pregnant, it would be very bad for her on a mental level. She may come to school feeling upset, people can see she is clearly pregnant. It would be a very emotionally bad experience for her and she can't even do anything about it, abortion is illegal. If abortion was legal, she could get rid of it and she likely wouldn't feel as bad. She could also get her mind of abortion and start to mentally heal herself. This would not be possible when pregnant because she would always be reminded about getting raped. She can clearly look in the mirror and only feel more upset about being raped.
Men may never even understand the damage of that, men don't get pregnant. If a young teenage girl was suffering from pregnancy and writing this, she could go in much more depth and detail than I ever could. Philocat can argue his points but he will never even truley understand what it's like to be pregnany pre-maturely. It should honestly be a choice for the woman, is abortion or premature pregnancy worse?
So the decesion is not as my opponent argues:
A: Someone will undergo nine months of unwanted pregnancy
B: Someone will be killed
We can conclude that the decesion is more like this:
A: A teenage girl had to undergo a mentally damaging situation for nine whole months.
B: A non-conscious embryo/fetus that is undeveloped and not able to do much is aborted.
I know there are rape children that are alive and living perfectly fine, I just brought it up as a small point, nothing too relevant.
However, what a rape child would have to suffer through is orphanage. We would clearly need to solve the orphanage problem because there are millions of orphans worldwide that don't receive help. (1)
While it is wrong to go around killing genetically ill patients, can we honestly compare a living person to a fetus/embryo? A living person has gone through many things, they have a history of consciousness. A living person has a brain in which they can think, they are fully developed and alive human beings. Genetically ill patients also do not live up to the quality of life, it would be better to abort them to prevent them from suffering while inside the womb.
And it is true that this is an eugenic argument, eugenics is not always cruel. The Nazis obviously went overboard but eugenics does not simply mean to genocide against people with undesirable traits.
I would like to bring up another point that we are secluding ourself from many things in nature. A genetically ill patient would be doomed to be killed by natural selection. Every person you see with a severe disorder would have never survived naturally. Because of natural selection failing to work, humans should take on the course of improving the genepool in non-cruel ways. Abortion is considarably a non-cruel way to improve the genome pool. Nature can no longer improve our genepool so it is important for ourselves to take action. I understand that going around killing people with disorders is very bad, but abortion is different as I have explained.
A fetus/embryo that isn't conscious and far from being a developed human is relevant to be gotten rid of in some cases.
Philocat's argument of killing a non-conscious teen in a state of non-consciousness is wrong so abortion is wrong. A teen has brain activity and they are a developed individual. More importantly, a teenage has a HISTORY of consciousness. Does an embryo/fetus have a history of consciousness? No, it does not. A young-term embryo/fetus shows little to no signs of brain activity, they don't have a consciousness. An embryo/fetus is simply a human-looking clump of cells.
Philocat has failed to seen that I have used a sperm and egg as an example of a common "pro-life" argument. If a fetus/embryo's exterminating is wrong because it has potential, why isn't killing sperm and eggs wrong? A sperm an egg are both living things, they are however not conscious nor do they have a history of consciousness. A fetus/embryo is the same way. Both of them have potential of a future human life.
Philocat argues that a sperm does not have potential of a future human life, but it in fact does. A sperm carries DNA and so does an egg. When a sperm fertilizes an egg, it doesn't go running away, rather it sort of merges with the egg and becomes an embryo. (1)
Not only do people have different morality but morals don't really exist. Morals are just a made up concept in your head, nothing else. I am just simply stating we can't just call abortion "moral" or "immoral." You can't just say, this is immoral, let's not do this. This is moral, we can justify in doing this.
Anyhows, discussing the realitivity of morals is another debate, as this debate is focused on abortion. Let's not go off topic here.
My opponent used a biased site for statistics. It's important to rely on more unbiased sources statistics speaking. While on a topic like abortion, relying on biased sources for arguments isn't bad. However, relying on biased sources for statistics may distort things.
Legality of abortion does in fact have an effect on safety.
"Worldwide, an estimated 68 000 women die as a result of complications from unsafe induced abortions every year—about eight per hour.6 This prevalence translates into an estimated case-fatality rate of 367 deaths per 100 000 unsafe abortions, which is hundreds of times higher than that for safe, legal abortion in developed nations." (4)
This clearly debunks Philocat's whole argument on abortion deaths having nothing to do with legality. I already explained why abortion is inequivelant to murder in my previous arguments.
It is also cruel to risk a woman's health, possibly life because they disagree with one on abortion.
1: If a woman is raped, especially a young teenage girl, exterminating a fetus/embryo is the lesser evil over making a young woman suffer.
2: Abortion for improving the human genepool is not equal to killing born people to improve the human genepool. Natural selection would have killed the disordered people naturally speaking.
3: A fetus isn't conscious, and it doesn't have a hsitory of consciousness thus making it justifiable to exterminate.
4: It's true that sperm and eggs are different from a fetus/embryo, but the pro-life logic eventually applies to both.
5: I just brung up morality as a quick statement as why I don't like using the term morality.
6: There is evidence showing that countries with illegal abortion have higher abortion fatality rates over countries with legal abortion.
My opponent seems to contradict himself in his arguments - as he claims that 'morals don't really exist' yet he bases most of his arguments on how abortion could reduce suffering. But this makes the implicit assumption that it is moral to act in such a way as to reduce suffering.
If there are no morals, then we have no reason to prohibit abortion. But equally, we also have no reason to prohibit torture, murder, child-rape or anything else that we intuitively know to be wrong. Yet I'm sure Con does not support the permissibility of these actions.
Con uses the following argument:
Premise: Abortion can help a woman's mental health
Conclusion: Abortion ought to be legal
Yet the only way that Con can make the logical step from premise to conclusion is if it is established that we ought to help a woman's mental health. However, if Con is right and there are no morals, then there are no moral 'oughts'.
In other words, who cares if abortion helps a woman's mental health? If there are no morals, why should we legalise abortion on the grounds of helping women? This question cannot be answered without appealing to moral principles.
So I am not sure as to which position Con actually believes, as the assertion that we ought to reduce suffering coupled with the assertion that there are no morals is a contradictory pairing. One cannot rationally believe both at the same time.
But for the purposes of this round, or until Con specifies otherwise, I will presume that Con believes that we ought to reduce suffering, and that he is disingenuous in claiming that there are no morals.
As explained above, this argument here is based on the controversial premise that an abortion can help a woman's mental health.
Although in the short term, abortion may increase a woman's mental wellbeing, but in the long term (which is what the law should prudently consider), women who have had an abortion have 'significantly higher rates of subsequent generalized anxiety'. (1)
But, even if abortion did help mental health, it still does not follow that abortion in cases of rape is justified.
The reason for this is that Con's argument is a utilitarian one, in which it follows the following criteria for law-making and correct action:
'an action as right if it produces as much or more of an increase in happiness of all affected by it than any alternative action, and wrong if it does not' (2)
Con clearly appeals to this principle, as he states that abortion in cases of rape is right because it produces an increase in happiness for the mother.
However, whilst the actual principle seems to be correct, Con does not apply it to abortion very well. Remember that it is both the mother and the foetus which is affected by abortion, so the happiness of the foetus should also be considered as well.
Weighing up the relative amounts of happiness:
Abortion: Foetus loses around 80 years worth of happiness (3)
No Abortion: Mother loses 9 months worth of happiness
Clearly, more happiness is contained within 80 years than within 9 months, so ultimately the action of not having an abortion is the right action, as it is the action that 'produces as much or more of an increase in happiness of all affected by it than any alternative action'.
Therefore, if Con argues that abortion is justified for rape victims because it reduces suffering and promotes happiness, then it turns out that considerations of happiness and suffering actually highlight how abortion is not justified.
Lastly, my opponent commits the Ad Hominem fallacy by claiming that I cannot understand the dilemma since I am a man. I would ask that he concentrates on refuting my actual arguments, not who is making them.
Con makes the point that a living person has had a 'history of consciousness', but this is just another red herring. In other words, it is not demonstrated that history of consciousness has any relevance to the permissibility of killing.
Why should the fact that a person has been conscious in the past affect how we should treat them now?
Moreover, a dead person has a history of consciousness, yet clearly dead people aren't entitled to be treated as well as living people.
Next, Con states that:
'Genetically ill patients also do not live up to the quality of life, it would be better to abort them to prevent them from suffering while inside the womb.'
But the latter part of the statement does not follow. If we are justified in killing people who do not live up to 'the quality of life', which is an extremely arbitrary qualifier by the way, then this justification isn't logically limited to the womb. We would be just as justified in killing them outside the womb, since the reason why we are killing them in the first place is not dependent on whether they are born or not.
Although the fatal flaw in the argument lies in Con's last line:
'I understand that going around killing people with disorders is very bad, but abortion is different as I have explained.'
The thing is, whether a person is born or not has no relevance to the eugenical aim of why we are killing them. So if killing people with disorders outside the womb is 'very bad', then killing people with disorders inside the womb is also 'very bad', which refutes Con's whole argument.
Con is yet to give a reason why brain activity affects the permissibility of killing. There are many differences between a teenager and a foetus, but there are few, if any, relevant differences pertaining to the permissibility of killing.
For example, it would be fallacious to say:
'A teen is over four feet tall and they are a developed individual. More importantly, a teenager has facial hair. Does an embryo/fetus have facial hair? No, it does not'
The reason why this is fallacious is because the height and hairiness of people is not relevant to whether we are justified in killing them. Likewise, Con has not demonstrated that having conscious, brain activity or a history of consciousness is actually relevan.
Finally, Con's assessment of sperm and eggs is quite simply incorrect. A sperm exists before conception, but when it fertilises an egg, the actual sperm does not exist after this point - it merges with the egg to form an entirely new being.
Put in the form of an equation, fertilisation is:
Sperm + egg --> embryo
Sperm + egg --> embryo + sperm + egg
The first equation is scientifically accurate. Notice how, after the process, it is only the foetus that exists, the sperm does not exist after the process of fertilisation, hence it can't live a future human life because it does not exist after conception.
Therefore, the sperm does not have a future human life, unlike the foetus. And as the capacity to live a future life is what determines the permissibility of killing (see round 2), this elucidates the reason why it is impermissible to kill a foetus but permissible to kill a sperm or an egg.
See my introduction.
I accept that the website I cited was biased, but the statistics themselves actually came from the National Center for Health Statistics, and was used on the floor of the US Senate. For Con to support his claim that the statistics are biased, he must provide evidence that the National Center for Health Statistics itself is biased.
Con goes on to quote the high amount of deaths that result from illegal abortion, but note the ending of the quote:
'which is hundreds of times higher than that for safe, legal abortion in developed nations.'
Coincidentally, abortion is generally legal in medically-developed countries and generally illegal in medically-undeveloped countries. (4) The implication of this is that there is only an international correlation between legality of abortion and safety of abortion, but correlation does not necessarily entail causation.
The correlation is better explained by the fact that medical science is far more developed in countries where abortion is legal than countries where abortion is illegal, and so the fact that abortion is safer in countries where it is legal is not because it is legal, but instead it is down to superior medical development.
As my graph in round 3 shows, it is medical developments, not legislature, that statistically determine the danger of abortions.
Therefore, it is still unproven and unlikely that legality has a significant causal effect on the safety of abortion, it seems far more apparent that medical developments are the main factor affecting abortion safety.
Besides, it remains true that women have a choice in the matter. They understand the risks of abortion and so if they choose to have one, they understand that they may be harmed. This is the same with any risky medical procedure, such as gender reassignment, for example.
Finally, Con writes:
'It is also cruel to risk a woman's health, possibly life because they disagree with one on abortion.'
But this can be absurdly applied to other scenarios, for example:
'Stealing is dangerous, so it is also cruel to risk a woman's health, possibly life, because they disagree with one on stealing'.
In other words, just because someone believes that a wrong action is right, it does not entitle them to considerations of their safety when undertaking said act.
(2) Peter Singer, Practical Ethics 2nd Edition, page 3
My opponent states that abortion would cause long-term anxiety to one. While this could possibly be true for some woman, remember for many woman, avoiding pregnancy especially at a young age, would cause less damage to them. He then goes on to state that if it does cause an increase in happiness to the mother, it causes a decrease in "happiness" to the embryo/fetus. Remember that a fetus/embryo does not have a developed brain, it can not feel happiness what so ever.
If the fetus grew and was born as a baby, remember it would assosciate with more health problems for the baby. Also do note that it would likely become another orphan, there's not much being done abour orphanage like I stated in round 3. My opponent then also tries to imply that abortion is murder. It is not murder if a cluster of cells that might develop into a human is being exterminated. That embryo/fetus can't think for itself, it has no consciousness, it's brain activity is extremely low or non-existant and etc.
And to bring the mental harm argument again, a teenage girl suffering from pregnancy would seriously hurt them. They would go to school, possibly to be made fun of, they would suffer from extreme anxiety and etc. It should not be illegal to prevent a teenage girl whom would feel abortion is less of a harm to them than pre-mature pregnancy. Many teenage girls comply with the fact on abortion and rape victims would rather have one.
Pro states that my "history of consciousness" argument is irrelevant seeing as it has nothing to do with "killing." It actually is a valid argument, a non-conscious teenager or whatever will wake up with memories. Their brain is also capable to fully work and they are fully developed functioning human being. Is a fetus/embryo a fully developed and functioning human being? No. A fetus/embryo would wake up not knowing anything. They wouldn't have a history of consciousness, thus making it reasonable to abort.
Pro is then implying that a dead person is not treated well and has a history of consciousness. However, a dead person is not alive and they will not wake up with a consciousness.
He then goes on to state that abortion is murder, thus making every possible benefit of abortion wrong. He also states that "killing" one inside and outside the womb is no different. While late-term abortions may be somewhat equivelant to killing a baby, early-term abortions are nothing. It is not murder to get rid of a cluster of cells. Killing a developed human outside of the womb with a consciousness is completely different.
Pro again is stating that the eugenical aim is to rentlessly kill people to improve the human genepool. This is not the case, as even people whom oppose the legalization of abortion can believe in eugenics. Eugenics may also state to restrict a minority of people with terrible genes from reproducing thus leading to less disorders.
The eugenical aim of abortion is not murder. It is simply a way to prevent someone from being born to suffer from a severe gentic disorder. Killing disordered people outside the womb is not equal to aborting them when they aren't a developed human being.
Pro states that brain activity makes killing a baby no different. They also state that:
"'A teen is over four feet tall and they are a developed individual. More importantly, a teenager has facial hair. Does an embryo/fetus have facial hair? No, it does not'"
Facial hair is not important, the brain activity is. If a person is not developed and show no brain activity, they are not considered a "valuable human being."
I also mentioned in my arguments on "human genepool" why a history of consciousness is valid to the abortion debate.
Also a sperm does not simply die when it fertilizes an egg, it simply merges with it and combines DNA. It then goes on to slowly develop. However, what's to say that at this point, suddenly someone is a valuable human being?
We can then apply typical anti-abortion legalization to it. Exterminating an embryo is no different because it has their own set of DNA. A sperm also has DNA and the potential to a future human life.
The fact that abortions are unsafe and illegal in undeveloped nations is another hint to legalization. If developed nations like USA or Australlia have the technology for safe abortions and such, why should we revert to the ways of undeveloped nations such as India or Iraq?
Also, outlawing abortion would not impact the fact people would still be getting abortions.
Black market abortions can also be seen a chance of money for some people. The same with with black market drugs, people would not care about a woman's healthy, they just need to help a woman with abortion to get their share of money. Without the government there to regulate abortion, who knows how bad they could become? People in black markets care about money, they don't care about the crime they are doing most of the time.
And if you read some of the sources I posted earlier, some black market abortions include cheap pills which are deadly.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by orangutan 1 year ago
|Agreed with before the debate:||-||-||0 points|
|Agreed with after the debate:||-||-||0 points|
|Who had better conduct:||-||-||1 point|
|Had better spelling and grammar:||-||-||1 point|
|Made more convincing arguments:||-||-||3 points|
|Used the most reliable sources:||-||-||2 points|
|Total points awarded:||3||0|
Reasons for voting decision: While I think Con could have won the Consciousness argument if he argued for it more forcefully. But Pro rebuts all the other arguments proposed by Con. Also, the rape and genepool arguments rely very much on the consciousness argument, and if Con didn't offer independent (bad) arguments like the idea that we need to control the gene pool because natural selection is no longer as in play in the past, these arguments would collapse into just being applications of the consciousness argument. The consciousness argument is the big issue, but I think Pro did at least as well of a job attacking it as Con did defending it. Con does not develop his argument against morality, and his black market abortion argument is successfully rebutted by Pro.
You are not eligible to vote on this debate
This debate has been configured to only allow voters who meet the requirements set by the debaters. This debate either has an Elo score requirement or is to be voted on by a select panel of judges.