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RFD For Abortion Debate

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6/9/2016 3:30:41 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
(Part One of Two of RFD)

This vote is on behalf of the Voter's Union.

Resolution: The USFG should ban abortion except in cases where the mother's life is in danger.

NothingSpecial99 (Pro) vs. Danielle (Con)


Let's get started!

Pro's Arguments/ Con's Rebuttals/Pro's Defense/ Con's Responses

Argument 1: The fetus is a distinctive, living human being

In this contention, Pro says that, as human zygotes are living, the fetus is living and it's a fact universally accepted within the scientific community. He also says that it starts at fertilization, which he proves with even more evidence from scientific sources. Pro adds that, even though philosophers suggest that the fetus isn't alive, they're on a subjective stance and disregard science.

This proves to be Pro's most effective argument, as Con concedes to it saying that she accepts that the fetus is a human. Because of this, no defense is given or needed from Pro.

Argument 2: Human rights

With this argument, Pro establishes that no person should be deprived of their lives, as stated in The Constitution and The Declaration of Independence. He also states that the United States is able to define human rights however they wish.

Con says that The Constitution has been amended amended 17 times since it's inception and has been intercepted in many ways by the Supreme Court, so it isn't exactly how it should remain.

In response, Pro says that, because Con said that The Constitution's legitimacy should be questioned, that the right to privacy for the mother should be questioned too. Pro adds that "'life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness' are an integrated part of US law as part of the Organic Laws along with the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights that also grant such rights."

Con also states that "SCOTUS decided in Roe v. Wade that a right to privacy under the Due Process Clause of the 14th Amendment extended to a woman's decision to have an abortion, but that this right must be balanced against the state's two legitimate interests in regulating abortions: protecting women's health and protecting the potentiality of human life ."

Pro then says that SCOTUS is flawed because there is no Constitutional, legal, or scientific basis for the fetus to obtain unalienable rights.

In response, Con points out the hypocrisy of Pro, as he said that "The best we can do is look at how the text stands today." Mere sentences later, he criticizes SCOTUS. This hypocrisy does weaken Pro's argument regarding SCOTUS.

Sub-argument 1

Pro states how human rights extend to unborn babies, as there is no distinction between human and person established in the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights and under Common Law.

Also, Pro says that "Murder is the unlawful killing of a human being with malice aforethought." and because of human zygote is a human being, it classifies as murder.

However, Con combats this by saying to compare it to euthanasia, where you're ending a life in order to relieve pain and suffering. She goes on to say that killing isn't necessarily synonymous with murder. Con also states that a human must have a level of sentience, which she explains in her contentions that I'll get to later.

Pro responds to this by saying that with euthanasia, one must consent before it proceeds, while a fetus can't consent. I think this is a very good defense, as Con doesn't respond to this again in her last round, give an advantage to Pro.

Argument 3: Conflict of Rights

In this contention, Pro mainly explains why the right to life is more important than the right to privacy. These reasons are the following.

1. The right to life is the precedent to the exercise of all other rights.
2. Privacy can be restored, meanwhile death cannot be reversed.

Con drops this argument.

He also says that pregnancies due to rape are extremely unlikely at less than half a percent, meaning that mists pregnancies are a result of consensual sex. Pro then says that women waive their bodily autonomy by consenting to sex.

Con responds by saying that consent to sex isn't necessarily consent to all sexual acts. She says that if she consents to sex and contracts an STD, then that doesn't mean that she shouldn't be allowed to treat it, because she has control over her body.

All Pro says is that consent to sex means consent to pregnancy, as it's a biological fact that pregnancy is designed for procreation.

Con repeats the same argument used to refute it the first time, so overall, she made an effective case against the contention.

Con's Arguments/ Pro's Rebuttals/ Con's Defense

1. Con says that people have the right to bodily autonomy. "This means we should be able to make decisions about our own bodies, especially if they affect our health risks. Abortion should be a legal choice for women because it is risky and directly involves their body and health."

Pro argues that the unborn child also has a right to bodily autonomy and that this argument goes against the resolution.

Con responds by saying that Pro made a bare assertion by saying that fetuses also have rights and that the women's rights are absolute, while a fetuses' rights aren't. Due to the fact that Pro never really brought up anything new, this argument goes to Con.

2. Con states that other people don't have the decision over what others do to their bodies. "For example if someone needs me to donate organs, blood or plasma, I cannot be legally forced to use my body to save their life..."

Pro counters this argument by saying that there's a big difference between denying treatment and actively killing someone.

Con responds by stating "Pro responded that there is a big distinction between not helping and actively killing someone. However I specifically pointed out that the law does not force us to help keep others alive, even if it is our fault they are in danger (much like a fetus)." Con doesn't really say anything new here, but I do consider this to be a pretty effective argument.

3. Con says that back-alley abortions won't stop if abortion is made illegal and that this puts the bodies of many women at risk.

Pro combats this by saying that back-alley abortions aren't necessarily a problem, with only 40 reported deaths before the Roe vs. Wade case.

Con then says that, regardless of the statistics, Pro ignores her argument about the risks of back-alley abortions. She also challenges his sources, as 5,000 cases of back-alley abortions in America prior to the Roe vs. Wade case occurred annually. With this, Con proves both the ineffectiveness of Pro's rebuttal and the inaccuracy of his sources.

4. Con says that women who are raped or victims of incest shouldn't be forced to carry on with the pregnancy, as it causes trauma, even if the percentage is small.

Pro says that although the rights of the woman carrying the child were violated, that doesn't mean the child should have to suffer for it, as they weren't responsible for what happened.

Con says that keeping the child can affect both her and the baby, as they may face ostracism or legal issues. I feel that this is an effective argument, as Con shows the negatives of not having an abortion in that scenario while also showing that it can affect not only the mother, but the child too, which means that the child may also have to suffer. This is contradictory to Pro's rebuttal.

5. Con says that we can combat abortion by providing quality sex education and access to birth control.

Pro refutes this by saying "This argument is irrelevant to the debate as it is after fertilization when a sperm and an egg become an embryo which you accept is a human being."

(Continued in Part 2)
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6/9/2016 4:22:19 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
(Part Two of Two of RFD)

Con doesn't respond to this rebuttal, giving Pro some momentum.

6. Con states that criminalizing abortion is more about control over women's bodies than actually protecting lives, as people rarely go after IVF, which is a similar process.

Pro states once again that this argument is irrelevant. "Just because many people do not follow what you believe to be a consistent pro-life ideology, that does not mean they reflect badly on the ideology itself. Con fails to make a connection why the actions of people should be related to how the pro-life ideology should be judged."

Con responds by saying "If so-called 'pro lifers' don't care about destroying eggs in one instance 'because they have legal rights,' why not in ALL instances? Of course this is relevant." All Con had to do was repeat herself, like she did in this rebuttal. She effectively explains the similarities between IVF and abortion all while proving that people may be biased against abortion.

7. Con says that the embryonic stem cells of aborted fetuses can be used for good and to save those that are already sentient.

Pro says that this is contradictory to what Con says earlier as "violating a person"s bodily autonomy has no legal or moral basis yet advocates that the bodily rights of the unborn can be violated if it yields cures to various diseases." He also says that human zygotes aren't the only way to collect stem cells.

Con states that Pro's argument is irrelevant, as he doesn't even address the embryonic stem cells that can be collected from aborted fetuses. Then again, Con doesn't address the basis of how hypocritical she was, as Pro pointed out, but that's besides the point. The thing is, Pro couldn't deny any of Con's main argument here, making hers better overall.

8. Con states that reproductive choice can be the only thing that stands between a woman and poverty or death. "...Pro's standard of the right to life means women who are in specific danger...will be forced to birth children, even if it means that they are likely to die and that there babies will die or be uncared for. "

Pro argues that adoption is a viable option and that the supply of children is much lower than the demand. He also says that Con's argument is irrelevant, as the resolution pertains to the United States, not to places like Asia or Africa.

Con responds by saying that "...saying the right to life doesn't apply to babies outside of the U.S. (implying only American fetuses are relevant) my opponent is discrediting the argument that all fetuses have the right to life. Indeed the right to life trumps national borders. If Pro is saying abortion is permissible in places where adoption isn't a realistic option, he's saying pragmatic arguments trump the 'right to life' argument. Throughout this debate I've been arguing that it's more pragmatic to keep abortion legal as well as moral (because fetuses do not have the right to life)." I'd have to go with Pro on this one, simply for the fact that it states that the USFG should ban abortion, not the entire world.

9. Con says that "...simply being alive (or even being conscious) does not determine the 'right to life' in society. Fetuses arguably do not have the right to life, specifically as it pertains to mandating the use of the mother's body to survive." She also says that it's "...the ability to feel, think, perceive, and be self-aware amongst other things that makes this important moral and legal distinction." She also asks why we don't grant the right to life to plants or animals.

Pro says that "The 14th Amendment doesn"t grant these rights to animals and plants but persons. The United Nations which the United States agreed to be a part of while also agreeing to uphold the rights that the UN defines, only extends such rights to humans. That is why it is called the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights, not the United Nations Declaration of Anything Alive Rights. Whether or not the ideology is grounded in arbitrary speciesism is irrelevant as the United States government decided to be bound by the 14th Amendment and the UNDHR. We the people agreed to uphold these rights for humans only. Unless the UN extends human rights to non-human things or the United States ratifies a Constitutional Amendment to give plants and animals rights, Con"s argument here is proven false."

Con responds by saying simply being alive or conscious doesn't necessarily mean you have the right to life. "Neither one of these documents ever extends these rights to fetuses or all humans, specifically....However Pro simply recited the 14th amendment granting rights based on personhood. He has NOT proven that human fetuses qualify as "people" with human rights. I have argued that they do not qualify as people with human rights just because they are both living and human." Like Con said, Pro hasn't proven that fetuses qualify as people with human rights, so I'd say that Con takes this argument.

My Decision

While Pro's arguments are technically solid and backed up well, he was poor at refuting most of Con's statements, which she backed up well too. With that, most convincing arguments goes to Danielle. Because of the inaccuracy of sources regarding back-alley abortions from Pro, Danielle also gets the reliable sources point. Congratulations!

(End of RFD)
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6/9/2016 9:58:01 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
How is the CDC a bad source?
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