The Instigator
debaterTater123
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
RobertSine
Pro (for)
Winning
4 Points

Should abortion be legal?

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
RobertSine
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/8/2015 Category: Politics
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 451 times Debate No: 68046
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (6)
Votes (1)

 

debaterTater123

Con

Abortion should not be legal. Essentially, the killing of an unborn fetus, which is a human being, is murder. "Murder is defined as the unlawful killing, with malice aforethought, of another human." (1) Murder is deemed illegal in all civilized countries, so abortion should be deemed illegal in all civilized countries.

1: "Murder". Merriam-Webster. Retrieved January 9, 2015.
RobertSine

Pro

The definition you provided for murder completely undermines your presupposition that abortion is murder. Murder is unlawful killing with malice aforethought of another human. Unless you only consider abortion murder in countries where abortion is already illegal, your presupposition - in addition to already being unsubstantiated - is meaningless. Furthermore, and similarly, malice "in its legal sense, applies to a wrongful act done intentionally, without legal justification or excuse"[1]. The obvious legal justification is that it's....well, legal.

[1]Law Dictionary: What is MALICE? definition of MALICE (Black's Law Dictionary)
Debate Round No. 1
debaterTater123

Con

You are correct, I do think I undermined my presupposition that abortion is murder. With that being said, however, your definition of murder is interesting as is your definition of malice. In both, you simply state that abortion is legal simply because "it's... well, legal." My point concerns itself with that abortion should not be legal because it is identical to murder in every way except for the fact that one is legal and the other is not. Abortion is simply legal murder.

Legal murder is this: The lawful killing with malice aforethought of another human.

Fetuses have unique human DNA. Fetuses are therefore humans that are unique. In civilized countries, the killing of other humans is illegal. Therefore, the killing of fetuses should be illegal.
RobertSine

Pro

That's a straw man. I never said why it's legal. I just demonstrated that its illegality is a prerequisite to its consideration as murder. As such, legal murder is an oxymoron.

Identical twins don't have unique DNA[1]. Are they not human? I'm not denying the antecedent here. I'm assuming you mean that unique human DNA is a requirement for being human, rather than being one of many possible things (without all of them being required) that makes one human. In any case, I don't wish to pursue you on this point because I agree that a fetus is human. I'm against abortion from a personal standpoint, just not a legal one (which, due to the character limit, I'll make my case for in round 3).

[1] http://scienceline.ucsb.edu...
Debate Round No. 2
debaterTater123

Con

debaterTater123 forfeited this round.
RobertSine

Pro

One of the main reasons for making something illegal - and the sole reason used in the case of abortion (and the reason you have continually used in this debate) - is that of the harm principle. A requirement to justify governmental interference under the harm principle is that it must reduce harm. Not only is this not the case with outlawing abortion (abortion rates are roughly the same in countries where it's illegal[1]), but it actually adds harm by forcing women to perform abortions on themselves or go to an unsafe environment. This results in 47,000 deaths worldwide annually[1]. Legally speaking, there is no pro-life. There is only pro-choice or pro-coathanger.

[1] http://www.guttmacher.org...
Debate Round No. 3
6 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Posted by RobertSine 1 year ago
RobertSine
Good luck on the vote :-)
Posted by RobertSine 1 year ago
RobertSine
Yeah I can imagine it would be hard to know just how much text each set number actually is in practice until you actually make a post within those limits.

I asked on the forum and as it turns out, once the debate gets accepted and goes into the debating period, you lose the option to change the character limit. There is a solution however.

http://www.debate.org...

If we both agree to restart the debate, it can be wiped clean (assumedly without any effect on our elo and whatnot) and set back up with a higher character limit by messaging airmax1227 and letting them know of our situation. It's entirely up to you. No pressure. I completely understand if you don't want to do that. It'll probably work in your favour not to seeing as I won't be able to make a proper rebuttal and state my case. Unless you might find it advantageous to take the opportunity to refine some of your arguments without having already gotten to the last round before getting the chance to do so. I'll leave it with you.
Posted by debaterTater123 1 year ago
debaterTater123
Yeah I don't think there is any way to change the settings of the character limit :( I'm new here too and I wasn't sure about what I should make the character limit :/ Perhaps it is a bit too short. As for what you would like to post, that's up to you :D
Posted by RobertSine 1 year ago
RobertSine
No idea I'm afraid. I'm new here too. Maybe it's not even possible after the debate has been accepted. If need be, I'll have to post a heavily edited version of my intended response to your argument in round 2 but then make my own case (which I've yet to do) in round 3 without commenting on anything you say in round 3 if that's ok.
Posted by debaterTater123 1 year ago
debaterTater123
Hmmm how does one do that, I can't seem to find the setting :/
Posted by RobertSine 1 year ago
RobertSine
Could you possibly increase the character limit some please? You don't have to max it out if you'd prefer to make sure we have a short debate but I'm finding it impossible to even rebut your arguments in round 2 within the current limits, let alone also make my own. Thanks in advance if you do.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Zarroette 1 year ago
Zarroette
debaterTater123RobertSineTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
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Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
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Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro's fair semantics rebutted Con's arguments twice, which is enough to win the debate. In particular, since Pro noted that "legal murder" is an oxymoron, this seemed too damning a rebuttal to give Con arguments, so they go to Pro. Conduct to Pro for Con's forfeit. I won't be giving source points because I thought they were even. The relevant sources provided ended about on equal terms. Pro's extra sources were not integral to the debate.