The Instigator
Con (against)
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The Contender
Pro (for)
3 Points

Under the present laws of the United States, should abortion be legal?

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/22/2015 Category: Politics
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 382 times Debate No: 81328
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (5)
Votes (1)




I am arguing that abortion should be illegal in the United States.


Under the present laws, abortion is legal. I will argue that is as it should be.
Debate Round No. 1


Presently in the United States, murder is deemed as criminal offense, unless during war or the death penalty. Personally, I am against both.

Those who are pro-life claim abortion is "murder" but the definition of this term must firstly be examined. "the killing of a human being by a sane person"

Read more:

Life, thence, must now also be defined. This is the core element of all abortion debates. This changes, however, based on one's concept of time. In the Newtonian concept of time, the argument can go either way. One augment against abortion, is potential. Regardless of the present state of the fetus, it has the static potential of a human being. Many have told me this is not a good augment, claiming that sperm has the potential to become a human as well, or even unfertilized eggs. They then say, are periods murder? However, they fail to understand the difference between static potential and potential itself. By this I mean, it's inevitable future state without interference. For example, if I leave a seed alone, it is never going to turn into a tree. It has no inevitable potential. Just like sperm, or eggs. If I plant the seed in the ground, water it, and wait for it to sprout, however, the seed now has static potential. The seed will eventually grow into a tree. From here, one can further ask the question, why is murder wrong in the first place? What am I doing by murdering something that is objectively wrong? The answer to which, is the deprivation of potential. If someone is murdered, I wrong them of their right to a future. I don't deprive their past or present. Thus, an argument can be made from this concept of time.
Nevertheless, we are not in the 19th century. The theory of special relatively has clearly shown that this old concept of time and potential is wrong. Instead, the universe is like an old film reel. Wholly static, but can be put into a projector and be changed. Past, present, and future are fixed parts of an entirety existing universe. All that there is, was, and every will be, simply exists. In fact, time can even be bent to appear slower or more quickly to the person experiencing its present.
Therefore, by depriving a fetus, regardless of it's 'present' state on the reel, it's inevitable future, you are committing the act of murder.
HOWEVER, Murder, in and of itself, however, does not necessarily mean something illegal. Murder in some cases is justified, such as self defense, war, and the death penalty.

MOREOVER, morality is completely subjective based on what humans 'feel' and 'want'. From an outside and logical point of view, it makes no sense why killing a person inside someone's body is legal but killing a person outside of someone's body is not. That being said, it is difficult to state what is "bad" and "good" based on the objectivity of human nature. An argument can be made for Locke's view of Natural Law. I personally agree with Natural Law, however, it is not 100 percent fact.
What I can say for fact, however, is that in the United States, abortion should be illegal based on the legal definitions of 'murder' and 'illegal.'

From my objective standpoint on the issue, I don't really care. In fact, I actually think Pro-Choice advocates make far better augments that those of Pro-Life. Especially considering, that Pro Life advocates use the notion of some imaginary omnipotent deity to argue their points. However, based on undeniable facts, the Lifers are technically right. There is no difference between aborting a fetus and killing a person. Thence, under the present laws, abortion should be illigal.


C1) "The Violinist"

"Judith Jarvis Thomson is an American moral philosopher and metaphysician". She is most famous for her 1971 essay "A Defense of Abortion" Within this essay is the following thought experiment.

"You wake up in the morning and find yourself back to back in bed with an unconscious violinist. A famous unconscious violinist. He has been found to have a fatal kidney ailment, and the Society of Music Lovers has canvassed all the available medical records and found that you alone have the right blood type to help. They have therefore kidnapped you, and last night the violinist's circulatory system was plugged into yours, so that your kidneys can be used to extract poisons from his blood as well as your own. [If he is unplugged from you now, he will die; but] in nine months he will have recovered from his ailment, and can safely be unplugged from you." Taken from Wikipedia

The right to life does not equal the right to use another person"s body. No such right exists morally or legally.

It would seem absurd that the famous violinist would have a right to my body. Likewise, with a fetus. While abortion may not be a desired action, the right of a fetus to life does not take away the right of a women to her own body.

Essentially my case is this. Does a woman have an absolute right to determine what happens in and to her body? Yes! She does. It is moral and legal to retain the right to your own body. Though short, I believe this case to be convincing.

Due to the moral and legal right to determine what happens to one"s own body, I affirm the resolution that In spite of a fetus' right to life, Abortion is morally and legally acceptable.
Debate Round No. 2


Firstly, I would like to thank my opponent for his argument. This is actually a very good argument!

As you have not refuted my prior argument, I will assume you agree.

with your argument, however, even if you agree with my aforementioned statement that a fetus is life, you still have the argument that the life belongs to the woman. Well done. Well done indeed.

In order for me to explain myself clearly, I will break it down into its logical form.

Premise A: A woman owns what is inside her body.
Premise B: A fetus is inside a woman's body
Conclusion: Therefore, a woman owns a fetus.

Implication of conclusion: "The right to life does not equal the right to use another person's body." - Quote by Pro.

Before even getting to your conclusion, I already disagree with the first premise. I disagree that anything inside a woman's body is her own property. If I, for example, were to shrink down to the size of a bug, and accidentally get stuck inside a woman's ear, would I be the property of the woman? Let's us assume, that it will take surgery to remove me from the ear. The surgery is schedule in 1 week. This is a huge inconvenience for the woman, I understand, and it is a very complicated issue (as is abortion), however, I don't think she has the right to take away my life nor do I believe that I am part of her body.

Let us, for the sake of argument, however, that you are right. Anything in a woman's body is own possession. From which point, couldn't you argue, that a Siamese twin has the "moral and legal" right to kill the other twin? One could argue, that the other is a hindrance. Of which, is likely very true. Being that it is the person's own body, the right to the other Siamese twins life odes not equal the right for the twin to use the other's body? Granted, that the part of the body which one of the twins wants to "abort" is indeed inside the twin herself.


Con seemingly misunderstands my argument. It has been claimed that I have argued that because a fetus is inside a women’s body that I am arguing that a pregnant woman “owns” the fetus. This is far from what I am arguing. The location of the fetus is irrelevant. What I am arguing is that the fetus does not have a right to use of a women’s body simple because it is living. Like with the famous violinist; the fetus will not survive without another’s body, but that does not give the violinist or a fetus the right to another’s body. A woman aborting a fetus no more “murders” it then you murder the violinist by refusing the violinist access to your body and he died.

Put another way, say my opponent had the need of a kidney and I was his only match. While I have two and I might be able to give him one, I am sovereign over my own body. The State has no legal grounds that could make me give him a kidney to that he needs to live. Furthermore, when he dies, no sane person would claim that I, by refusing to give my kidney, could be convicted of “murder.”

A fetus does not have a right to use of a woman’s body. That woman is sovereign over her own body. Thus we can conclude that under the present laws of the United States Abortion should be legal.


Con has argued that because a fetus is living and that a woman having an abortion causes it to die that it should be illegal. I have demonstrated that the right to life does not equal the right to use another person’s body. No such right exists morally or legally.

As Con noted, “even if you agree with my aforementioned statement that a fetus is life, you still have the argument that the life belongs to the woman.” Thus it is clear that even if you buy con’s argument my argument still stands and wins the debate.

Under present laws in the U.S. Abortion is rightly legal.

Good debate Con.

Vote Pro!

Debate Round No. 3
5 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Posted by Death23 1 year ago
austinjames tells me to "read more" on his definition for murder from and the definition states explicitly that "abortion is not murder"
Posted by kasmic 1 year ago
I am interested to see how physical autonomy laws are applied to Siamese twins in different societies.
Posted by austinjames 1 year ago
The kidney example is not sufficient as I am not presently using your kidney to surrivie. It would be like you giving me your kidney and then taking it away.

Even with my misunderstanding, the simease twin argument stands.

Regarding the vote claiming there is no law against abortion. I never claimed this. I claimed there is law against murder.

Good debate. I admit, I may have been defeated in so far as I misunderstood your argument. However, the twin argument refutes your argument nevertheless.
Posted by austinjames 1 year ago
I am objectively neither for or against abortion. The question, as it reads above, asks whether it should be legal or illegal in the united states based on the legal definitions. I am agreeing, as you should have read, that abortion, based on these legal definitions, should be illegal.

I have fixed this to make it more clear.
Posted by mayahcw 1 year ago
So, are you against abortion? I need to know what side I'm supposed to be debating :-)
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by famousdebater 1 year ago
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: I will be writing a full RFD for this soon if I get time but for now I'll briefly explain my reason for decision. Con's argument was evidently flawed and even if his argument did stand then pro's still stands and therefore it is impossible for con to actually win this debate. Due to the flaws in Con's arguments I am forced to vote con. But what are these flaws? First con assumes that there are very specific rights and laws regarding abortion. This argument is disproved by Pro since there are no such laws. Con essentially just made them up. Due to a misunderstanding regarding Pro's argument Con's rebuttal is insufficient . Pro points out this misunderstanding in the final round. Con thinks that Pro is saying that women own the fetus inside their body. Pro clarifies what he meant in the final round and due to the fact that this argument was comprehensible, I think that Con could have done a lot better to refute this claim and therefore I vote Pro!