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

Abortion Should Be Illegal

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/26/2018 Category: Politics
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 387 times Debate No: 113178
Debate Rounds (5)
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I believe that abortion is wrong and should be illegal. Life starts at conception. The only reason I believe this is because it is the only constant point to measure from and it is at the exact point of when a new life is made. It is now open to anyone to argue that it should be legal and I am open to having my mind changed, if there is good evidence and reasoning. If you have come to just be hateful I ask that you keep scrolling for another topic.
-Thank you


To begin, thank you for allowing me to take part in this debate. I definitely appreciate the opportunity to discuss perhaps one of the most controversial topics in our current society with you.
To begin any argument one must adequately define their terms, so first let's define abortion. According to a simple Google search, one can see that abortion is defined as a "deliberate termination of a human pregnancy, most often performed during the first 28 weeks of pregnancy." Due to my opponent's previous statement(life starts at conception), we will be restricting this to abortions that occur during the 24-72 hours after conception. Now during this time, the fetus lacks a heart, lungs, pain receptors, a brain, or any other defining characteristics that would characterize the fetus as sentient. Sentience is simply the ability to experience, feel, or perceive reality.(A google search reveals that too.) Our laws are based upon the concept of sentience which is why some rights extend to animals such as house pets and humans! So the pro is asserting that we should extend the rights to beings that are not sentient as well. I am assuming that the reasoning for this rejection of abortion is because of the idea that abortion is equivalent to murder. This is what I want to flesh out next.
Murder would be the unlawful killing of another human being. So if fetuses are human and the killing is unlawful, then abortion must necessarily be murder. This would apply if fetuses had the same rights that every other human holds by birth. I'm certain that you would agree that laws applied to a society should be applied to all members of the society. Also, there should be no members in the society that have a greater degree or lower degree of rights without the existence of extenuating circumstances. This is what my case hinges on. The fetus relies on the woman for its survival and that is permissible when the women consents, but if the woman rejects this relationship, then it would be a violation of the woman's bodily autonomy. There is no individual human who has the right/legal authority to force another person to keep them alive. There is also not a single human who has the right to use another human's body for its own survival. If a law was passed to prohibit abortion, then it would punish women for their own biology and violate their right to choose what happens to their bodies. Furthermore, this law will give rights (without proper reason) to fetuses that other humans lack. So, in your rebuttal, I implore you to develop your reasoning behind giving fetuses privileges that born humans lack. I also implore you to restrict your reasoning to the short period after conception due to this being key to your initial statement. Finally, develop the reasoning behind the idea of why rights should be given to non-sentient beings as well as giving these non-sentient beings special rights that sentient humans lack. Thank you for your time.
Debate Round No. 1


Before I go into answering your questions and arguing your points I would like to say thank you for being so respectful with your phrasing. I can tell this is going to be an intellectual conversation.
To tackle the first argument you mentioned about sentience, you said that because the fetus can not feel pain or perceive reality. As far as pain goes, people in comas cannot feel pain does that mean we can kill them? They also cannot perceive reality either. Another person that cannot perceive reality is anyone with delusions like someone with Alzheimer"s disease. Again, does this mean we can kill them too?
Your second point was that the fetus relies on the mother to live and that it should have no right to do so. However, this would go against your point to kill before 28 weeks because the fetus relies on the mother until it leaves. So to keep the argument straight I would argue that that part of your argument be taken out if you believe the 28 weeks rule otherwise you are arguing that abortions can happen until the baby is outside of the womb. But we run into an impasse their to because you said no one has the right/authority to force that women to keep them alive. The impasse is child services, they force people to take care of their children until they are 18 years old. they also have this authority from the government and have since 1974.
Thirdly, If I am receiving you correctly you are saying that by taking abortions away we are giving rights to the fetus that are taken from the mom. (If this is wrong please correct me in your response. this is just how I have interpreted your question) The problem here is that we are not taking away any rights here. Murder has never been a right . When someone has an abortion they are killing another human because genetically it is a different being. as far as the mom giving consent to provide that was given when they decided to have unprotected sex. And I know what you are thinking, what about rape? Well to start rape is less then or equal to 1% of abortions (I say less than or equal to because some sources say less and some say 1). Now I'm not saying that because it is a small amount of cases it is irrelevant I am saying that rape abortions cannot be used to advocate all abortions. I still, however, is murder. I would never force a woman to carry a child for nine months, what I am saying is that the forced act is the rape and it would be another forced act to kill the unborn child after. It would be equivalent to a criminal killing someone and then after the brother of the victim killing the criminal in retribution.
Finally, since we I have dismissed rape as an argument lets clarify that I am Pro-Choice. There are 4 choices for a woman: Abstinence,Contraception, Adoption, or Pregnancy. I would like to point out that I know that condoms break and birth control can fail. But this is the risk when you have sex. It does say 99.9% effective so there is that chance shown to you on the box. So in summary the 4 choices, excluding rape cases, given the woman the chance to not have to deal with Abortion at all.
Thank you for reading this entire thing I did not intend to be this wordy but it turned out I had a lot to say.


People who have lost their grasp on their sentience are not equivalent to a fetus that does not have sentience. The fetus within the 24 to 72 hours after conception has not had rights bestowed upon it by the government, so it is not protected in the same way as the people suffering from physical and mental illnesses. These people have not committed acts to have their rights to life revoked. One might attempt to assert the fetus has done nothing either, but the fetus has no rights to be revoked. Later on, I'll discuss the point of the implications of fetus rights, but allow me to enter my next point first.

"Your second point was that the fetus relies on the mother to live and that it should have no right to do so." This is not my argument. Rather, the fetus has no right to force the duty of caring for its existence upon the mother. Let's also discuss the impasse you mentioned. "You said no one has the right/authority to force that [woman] to keep them alive." Immediately after stating this, you mention a group that the government has bestowed rights upon to ensure the proper care of children that have been born. Tom, from Child Services, can't use your body to keep himself alive. He, as a citizen, lacks the right to violate your autonomy. Rather,Tom can have you prosecuted for improperly taking care of your child. Prosecution is not equivalent to violating your bodily autonomy and no individual person has the right to violate your bodily autonomy for their own benefit.
By criminalizing abortion, you violate the bodily autonomy of the woman. You restrict the woman's bodily autonomy and give the bodily autonomy to the being that survives at the expense of her body. You mention murder as not being a right of people, but murder is the unlawful killing of another human being. Fetuses have not had rights bestowed upon them therefore the termination of a pregnancy would not classify as murder. Furthermore, in the first 72 hours, how similar is the developing fetus to a 3 year old child or a 20 year old adult? The vast difference between the two even calls into question the statement of abortion being the killing of another human being. It seems to be more fair and accurate to say the killing of human cells rather than a being. Nevertheless, without a proper reason to violate a woman's bodily autonomy available, we can not be justified in the criminalization of abortion.

Finally, let's discuss the portion on sex. Pregnancy is not something that happens due to our direct will. What I mean by this is that humans don't control pregnancy in the same way you can control your arms, legs, and head. Due to the fact that pregnancy is not controlled by individual humans but rather enabled by pairs of humans, I assert that consent to sex does not equate to consent to pregnancy. In other words, to say "I want to have sex" does not mean that I am saying "I want to be pregnant." If I say " I want to go skydiving" this does not mean that I want to fall to my death even if I know this as a possibility. I'm hoping for the pleasure I would experience from the event rather than the potential, and unlikely, consequence of my acceptance. Even when I go skydiving, I must sign a waiver that explains the danger and removes my ability to sue my hosts in the event of injury. Nothing of this sort exists for pregnancy and even by waiving my right to sue, I am still not hoping for death by simply participating.

The use of contraceptives furthers this argument of women not consenting to the pregnancy. If the woman in question wanted to be pregnant, then it would be illogical for her to use contraceptives since they actively work against her goals. A pregnancy that occurs as a result of protected sex is an invasion of the woman's body until she consents to allowing this being to exist inside of her. Ultimately, the decision should be placed in her hands, because she is the autonomous creature who has the right and capability to make her own decisions concerning her body. Utilizing government power to remove a woman's bodily autonomy would imply that women are slaves to their biology and, in this specific circumstance, they have no right to decide what happens to their bodies. This is a massive inhibition on half of the population that has a number of potential consequences that can be expounded upon if necessary. Once more I ask... for what reason should we remove a woman's right to bodily autonomy while giving rights to a being that has invaded her body for its own benefit? If this reason is simply because it is a potential human, then that means you are bestowing and exalting the rights of the fetus that is only a bundle of cells over the rights of the sentient human who must carry and nurture this being without her consent. In what world can we look at that and say "Yes that is the right thing to do"?

PS I don't intend on using rape as an argument, so we can leave that entire chain of reason behind us. Rape is an extenuating circumstance that is not necessary for me to appeal to in order to make my case.
Debate Round No. 2
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Debate Round No. 5
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