Look at an ultrasound during a pregnancy, and there is no doubt a fetus is a person. You say it is still developing? A baby is still developing, and yet, no one has any problem calling it a person. The only contention is that a fetus is till in the mother's body, and a tough dilemma is created about how much a mother has dominion over her own body that is carrying that little person. That, however, does not mean a fetus is not a person.
I am pro-life in most circumstances (except in cases of rape or endangerment to the mother). I believe that upon conception, you do not have a right to endanger the new life beginning. Many may disagree, but I would still say a fetus is a person. At that stage, the baby is already developing.
A fetus is alive. It is growing, and given that its parents are humans, a fetus is a person. Think of it in another way. It has all the characteristics of a human. It has human parents, formed like all humans are, is protected by laws which protect humans (you cannot pull a fetus out and hit it even if the mother agrees), so why wouldn't it be a person?
To understand this what must first determine what it means to be a person. The fetus is alive and has human parents and human DNA so we know they are human. After this people will come up with conflicting arbitrary definitions of what makes a human a person. The only definition that makes sense is that someone becomes a human at conception because that is the only meaningful change in someone's life.
Fetus itself refers to a developmental stage of ANY mammal, but I assume you mean human mammals. The human fetus objectively is a individual human being unless you denounce science and especially genetics, biology, evolution, and taxonomy. But it is only a person according to subjective arbitrary definitions because "person" is a subjective and arbitrary thing that is at the definer's own discretion. There is no consensus on person-hood and their never will be, it is just like the supposed "soul" (it probably doesn't exist). Under my definition of person, the fetus is one.
At just 8 weeks a fetus can suck it's thumb, somersault, move it's tongue, jump, swallow, frown, and squint. I don't know about you, but to me that sounds like human life. I personally believe that a human becomes human when egg meets sperm. Yes, this statement is blunt but needs to be said. A persons a person no matter how small.
A person is simply an individual, an individual is a distinct human being. The fetus cannot be disregarded as a person based on the fact that it cannot survive on its own, because that is not a requirement to be a person. Every fetus has its own individual characteristics(DNA,Fingerprints etc) that are specific and unique to it and are waiting to be developed into something more comprehensive. A person is nothing but a developed fetus. Hence a fetus, no matter how dependent, is a person.
"Fetus" is just a term for a developing mammal or other animal. It doesn't point to what the life-form is but merely what stage of development it is at (i.e. a fetus is a fetus after the embryonic stage and before birth). Fetus does not point to what kind of life-form is being carried, it just indicates the age of the fetus. Is a dog fetus a person? No, because the term "person" is exclusively attributed to human beings. This being so, I'm assuming that this question is about whether or not a human fetus in particular is a person. It is a fact that a developing fetus in the womb of a human being and conceived by human beings is a human being. All individual human beings are people, no matter their age. Legally, however, this is not the case in many places.
"Not yet. A person is an intelligent, contributing member of society."
If that is your definition of a person then we can abort at least 35 percent of the adult population in the United States. I find it astonishing in a society that will close down vast expanses of lands and waterways to save species of animals we will kill a child in the womb in the name of women's rights. I wish all of you in the no column would have been aborted. Does that make you mad? Good, it should. Think about it.
Unless I hear a valid argument which clearly defines the parameters in which we can consider one as fitting the definition of a "PERSON", I am inclined to say that, a human being begins at conception. The previous parameters set up are not satisfactory:
1. A person is an intelligent, contributing member of society.
Response: Believe me this argument falls apart as soon as you enter an insane asylum.
2. A person has a conscience and a soul.
Response: How is one measuring these metaphysical qualities? With what instrument or argument? I am incapable of determining this in anyone but myself. If that is true then how can we tell if a fetus does not posses a conscience or soul?
3. A person has preference, personality and interests?
Response: All qualities that a dog and chimpanzee so have.
I can try and explain everything written but I am just too tired now to bother. My question is simple: TELL ME WHAT YOU MEAN BY PERSON, THEN WE CAN START TALKING ABOUT WHETHER A FETUS IS A PERSON OR NOT. Until this becomes clear I say a fetus is a person since it is the one thing that by itself has the grows into what we define as a person.
A person is an intelligent, contributing member of society. A person has a conscience and a soul. A person has preferences, personality, and interests. The only characteristic that could be argues is the soul part. Otherwise, nope. Not a person. That doesn't mean you should go around killing them willy-nilly. They just aren't people yet.
Even if it were, no individual has the "right" to exploit your body without your consent, no matter how grave their needs may be, and even if it were "murder" its not like murder isnt justified everyday, like the death penalty, war, denying sick people life saving care, police homicide etc. The "right to life" is a myth and a lie religious people tell themselves to feel better.
There is no guarantee that the fetus will be born alive, and plenty of things can go wrong at birth. The fetus is drawing its nutrients from its mother, is still attached to its host mother, and is not breathing. It is not a person until it is born and taking in oxygen.
The fetus is not a person yet... However it has the potential to develop into a fully grown person. This means it is not right to go around killing them just because they are not people yet... So although fetuses are not people, they are highly valued as they have to potential to become one.
The fetus is not a person as it does not have the "breath of life." For millenia, this view has prevailed and laws supported this view. The Bible is clear that the fetus is not a person. The same is true of American law and court decisions, e.G. Roe vs Wade. The recent political view that the fetus is a person is not supported by the laws written over centuries. The Bible is also silent on the topic of abortion, i.e. This silence supports the view that the fetus is not a person.
Sure, a fetus is individal. So is the frog I disected in middle school. BUT, they are individal in ONLY a physical sense (frog and fetus). A fetus has basically (really none at all) no life experiences, and has not interacted with the world in a tangable way. Any given insane person (or other noncontributing member of scociety) is different from any other given insane person, in a very big way. Any fetus is VERY similar to all other human fetuses, aside from a bit of genetic and epigenetic material that gives them race, predispositions, ect. People are incredibly diverse. Fetuses are only somewhat diverse, assuming you are willing to look at genetics. Also, people have been invested in, more so than a few calories that the fetus needs. Years of investment.
So what if I had been aborted? Well, I wouldn't be here. So what? Well, if I wern't, my troubles, as well as yours, would be all the fewer.
We do not consider a chicken egg to be a chicken, therefore a fetus is not a human being. A fetus is not human being; yes,it is human, but those are different things. A human being is defined as a man, woman, or child. A fetus is none of those.
A person has the ability to survive independently from another being as far as autonomy is concerned. A fetus cannot do this, and thus is not a person. One can argue a baby cannot survive without it's mother, but it can: for a time. A fetus dies immediately after being severed, and has more in common with a parasite than a person, especially if the mother doesn't WANT the kid.
Religion has no bearing on this,.
No. A fetus is not a person. Just because it looks like an elephant/monkey embryo doesn't mean it also is a human. We do not know when life actually begins.
Don't argue it.
Get your religion out of here.
Don't mention "soul" or "god" or "gift." There is no sense in saying so.
A person is an individual who has grown cognitively and physiologically enough to demonstrate independence from another life source. A fetus is defined as a group of rapidly-growing cells, dependent on the mother's nutrients and resources, and has very little if any cognitive activity. Until that fetus has fully grown, birthed, and takes its first breath - it is not a person. A person has tangible and intangible characteristics as a result of life experiences. An undeveloped human cannot be considered a person, as well as incubated eggs cannot be considered chickens. They are of POTENTIAL, but are not guaranteed to develop properly (stillborn babies). Until he/she has taken his/her first breath and arrived into this world, 'it' (especially prior to week 16 of pregnancy) is just a collection of cells and tissue. It is when an arrival experiences the first second of life and the world they will forever live in - that they become a person.
Prior to that spectacular moment, it is essentially a somewhat-cancerous collection of cells that hosts off of another human. Without the mother's nutrients, the fetus would die. A person is capable of retrieving their own nutrients (exceptions to disabled people) and does not need to use the resources of another human body. We celebrate birthdays on the day you came into this world for a reason; that is the day you were introduced into society as a person. A fetus doesn't guarantee life once it leaves the host, and a person is alive independently after all process.
That is just how I see it, but it is a very subjective and controversial topic - I understand the confusion on the term "person". Rationally, a person is capable of multiple mental and physical functions that a fetus just cannot attempt to perform.