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

We cannot allow Abortion to transform into Murder

Do you like this debate?NoYes+0
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/14/2019 Category: Society
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 591 times Debate No: 120311
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (2)
Votes (1)




PLEASE DO NOT ACCEPT THIS DEBATE IF YOU ARE PRO-LIFE. I do not want to debate the morality of abortion writ large. I want to debate the validity of applying "choice" arguments to late-term abortions.

===Debate Intro ===
With the passing of NY State's 2019 abortion bill, It is necessary that pro-choice advocates disambiguate themselves from pro-abortion advocates. I would like to debate with an individual who endorses late-term abortion in general (or this NY bill in specific). I will then attempt to draw a clear philosophical line between abortion of a fetus and the murder of a child.

The New York Times quotes the new NY law with the following: "The new law permits abortion after the 24th week of a pregnancy [if] there is 'an absence of fetal viability, Or the abortion is necessary to protect the patient's life or health. ' "

According to US Legal's website, "Abortion is defined as the termination of pregnancy by various methods, Including medical surgery. "

=== Housekeeping ===
Round 1 expectations: beyond acceptance I request that you provide some bona fides in the form of a number of weeks. Please tell me your opinion/ conclusion/ feelings/ morality on the point when abortions should no longer be allowed (after how many weeks of gestation). If you are unwilling to provide this figure, Please post a comment explaining your declination instead of accepting the debate. Please also feel free to respond to the NY Times description and US Legal definition if you feel they are inadequate or inaccurate.

I prefer many short rounds in lieu of few long-winded rounds, Because it allows the opponents to engage more intimately.


HK 1) I am pro-choice and pro-abortion. The reason why I am pro-choice is because I believe women should have full control over their reproductive rights and don't believe that you must carry a pregnancy if you choose not to go through with it. If you don't want an abortion then don't get one. There are over 400k kids in the foster system where the majority age out and the majority end up with issues for the rest of their lives. I honestly think a debate on our failed foster system should take priority over non issues such as abortion which is only used as a wedge issue near elections and for virtue signaling.

HK 2) I am pro-abortion because I believe we are overpopulated and people in first world nations are more costly in terms of resources in a world of limited resources. I also believe that women having children at a young age only limits them in the long term where many may have to put their careers and education on pause which hurts the labor market, Especially when a higher education is required.

HK 3) I believe the limit on abortions would be when the probability of survival outside the womb is higher than 60%. The problem with the USA is our huge population and large number of poor citizens that makes reliable access to child saving care almost impossible which increases infant death rates. For this reason I believe 25 weeks is a reasonable cutoff point not only because its economically feasible, But also because it's the point where the brain begins to show activity and reacts to stimuli in a measured response.

Now to your main arguments.

1) The direct quote of bill S-2796 is as follows: "" 2599-aa. Abortion. 1. A health care practitioner licensed, Certified, Or authorized under title eight of the education law, Acting within his or her lawful scope of practice, May perform an abortion when, According to the practitioner's reasonable and good faith professional judgment based on the facts of the patient's case: the patient is within twenty-four weeks from the commencement of pregnancy, Or there is an absence of fetal viability, Or the abortion is necessary to protect the patient's life or health. 2. This article shall be construed and applied consistent with and subject to applicable laws and applicable and authorized regulations governing health care procedures. ". This is what was added to the laws concerning abortions and it clearly states it includes abortions "within 24 weeks" as standard practice and only provides abortions after 24 weeks if the fetus is likely to not survive (if you want to prolong the suffering of the child be my guest) by showing low vital signs and when the mothers life is at risk, Which if you were consistent in your views, Youd rather only one person die rather than two.

2) In 2015, According to the CDC, 91. 1% of abortions occurred within the first 13 weeks and only 1. 3% occurred after 21 weeks. There was 638, 169 abortions in 2015 so that roughly translates to 8, 296 late term abortions of mothers who probably DID want their child, But couldn't because their life was in danger or their fetus was already close to dying. Late term abortions (abortions in general) are blown out of proportion and are not an epidemic.

I'll close this argument by saying that we should focus more attention on those who are already born and struggling rather than the clump of cells that lose importance once they are born. I'll quote George Carlin on this one "Boy, These conservatives are really something, Aren't they? They're all in favor of the unborn. They will do anything for the unborn. But once you're born, You're on your own. Pro-life conservatives are obsessed with the fetus from conception to nine months. After that, They don't want to know about you. They don't want to hear from you. No nothing. No neonatal care, No day care, No head start, No school lunch, No food stamps, No welfare, No nothing. If you're preborn, You're fine; if you're preschool, You're fucked. "
Debate Round No. 1


I find your acceptance speech to be full and fun. I would love to take a dozen rounds and walk through each item with you. Perhaps we have a bright future ahead of us as debate partners. However, I hope you will allow us to start with late-term abortion.

I am surprised with the glaring omission in your acceptance. There is one word that is most important in the updated NY law. I would call it the 'operative' word of the entire change, The only word that makes the change worth the NY legislature's time. The word is HEALTH.

So, There are really 4 scenarios when an abortion is allowed under the new NY law:
-- 1 -- less than 24 weeks
-- 2 -- fetal unviability
-- 3 -- mother's life
-- 4 -- mother's HEALTH

Under the guise of HEALTH anything goes. By definition a woman's health suffers during pregnancy. My sister-in-law (who abhors abortion) once compared a fetus to a parasite. For intelligent biological reasons, The fetus takes the best portion of all the nutrients out of the mother's body beginning with conception. Besides biological HEALTH, This exception also includes so-called mental HEALTH. Mental HEALTH includes "I changed my mind" and "parenting is hard. "

You quoted the CDC that over 8000 late-term abortions happened in 2015. You then claimed that these all fell into scenarios 2 and 3 (life issues). I reviewed the CDC report, And it does not break the late-term abortion number down in any way. For the purposes of this debate, However, The exact number of late-term abortions is not important. So what is?

The NY law now grants a woman legal approval to receive an abortion at 40 weeks' gestation if she wants it (ie she says it "is necessary to protect [her] HEALTH"). Such permission is unbearable. Are you still pro-abortion under these conditions?


1) The "omission" was not on purpose because the "health" (as is most legal speak) is left intentionality vague to allow wiggle room for extreme cases where carrying the pregnancy full term will cause permanent bodily harm to the woman. You also ignore that it's under the practitioners judgment which is reviewed by the medical board which is also investigated and any foul play may result in suspension of license.

2) as for the mental health portion, If the female shows signs of homicidal and/or suicidal tendencies and if the best course of action is termination of the pregnancy, Then I am sure that will be considered an option. These are extreme cases and not the majority. The statistics show this.

3) The exact numbers are not important, But it gives you an idea of what actually matters. Nobody gets an abortion at 40 weeks, So your imaginary problem doesn't phase me or change my mind
Debate Round No. 2


=== Health ===
You seem to suggest that the health exception is hard for a woman to get. This seems false.

First, Roe v. Wade (1973) included "distress. . . Associated with the unwanted child" as a health consideration.

Second, Doe v. Bolton (1973) included physical, Emotional, Psychological, "familial" (not sure what that means), Age, And overall "well-being" as HEALTH considerations. Further, It instructs the physician to place the benefit of the doubt with the pregnant woman.

Third, You say a "practitioner's judgment. . . Is reviewed by the medical board. " However, The new NY law gives NY's Department of Education the duty of issuing licenses--not a medical organization.

Finally, Most late abortions are under the health exception. The Hill quotes a 2013 Guttmacher study that abortion cases based on fetal abnormalities were "a small minority"; cases based on the mother's life were "an even smaller number. "

=== What is abortion terminating? ===
At 25 weeks, 28 weeks, 30 weeks, Etc, A pregnancy can be terminated without terminating the child. Therefore, Killing the child should no longer be considered part of the abortion.

You referred to questions about "carrying the pregnancy full term" and recommendations that the "best course of action is termination of the pregnancy. " In late abortions, Neither of these require the sacrificing of the life of the child. I guess my main point is that abortion should stop at the minimalist route to ending the pregnancy. It should not be allowed to include killing the baby when such practice is unnecessary for the ending of the interaction with "the woman's body. "

Even in a pro-abortion society, Killing should be abhorred. If the baby's body does not need the woman's, It should not be considered part of the pregnancy during an abortion.


1) Exceptions and liberty regarding a patients health is a vital necessity in healthcare. By restricting what falls under health you only hurt consumers who's cases are not black and white. Your objection that getting an abortion and second opinion being easy is not based in reality. If you get denied an abortion because it's already a viable birth then you must pay for a second or even third doctor to evaluate your case. This is an expensive alternative that most women cannot afford both economically and time wise.

2) For 1st & 2nd term abortions you shouldnt be denied because the viability of an early birth at this point (before 27 weeks) is very low. According to March of Dimes and QBPSF, At 25 weeks the probability of a premature birth surviving is at 50%. At 27 weeks its 90%. These are the statistics from a state of the art facility which most small cities do not have instant access to and most cannot afford. However anything born before 26 weeks has a 80% chance of developing a disability with 34% developing a mild disability which can range between being near sighted or minor cognitive impairment. 24% get a moderate disability with equal cognitive impairment and possibly cerebral palsy. The remaining 22% will have severe disabilities which vary from person to person. Put simply, These are not favorable odds that we should accept as a first world country and should only consider limiting abortions once our medical advancement and standard of care reach up with our title.

3) The second case places the benefit into the women when her state allows an abortion. Say at 8 weeks she doesn't need some special form of life or health exception to get one. This is what it is in reference to. As for "late" term abortions, 24 states currently accept late term abortions under "life and health" exceptions and this number is going up. The states that don't have this still have some sort of life exception and a variation of what they interpret "health" to mean.

4) I wasnt talking about issuing licenses, I was talking about performing an abortion. Abortions do not require a license. Every medical clinic both private and public must disclose their operations to a medical board and any malpractice or special cases are reviewed by them. If they find any shady business that can hurt the publics trust in them then they get their practitioners license revoked. There is no cabal of abortion lovers.

5) Did you know that not every human is healthy? Did you also know that complications can and do happen especially when your body is developing a human inside you? By removing the health clause you doom women to a potentially life ruining injuries and unnecessary distress. We already went over that there are over 400, 000 kids in the foster system that would love to be loved much like how you love a fetus. Put your money where your mouth is.

6) As the earlier statistic shows, At 25 weeks they only have a 50% chance of survival in a state of the art facility with 80% of the survivors having some form of obvious disability. Also, Only 2% of all babies born in the USA are born before 32 weeks. Why again do you care about someone else's business?

7) I'd like for you to show me the statistic that shows abortions wouldn't be necessary for those abortions. Until then it's a mute point.

8) Technically it's not a baby, So no babies are killed in the process ;)

9) In a pro birth society they must be for providing healthcare, Education and equal opportunity for all of its inhabitants. You cannot say you are pro life and cut funding for child assistance programs and neglecting public schools.
Debate Round No. 3


=== Quick Responses to R3 ===
1) You like health exceptions for "cases [that] are not black and white. " I struggle with them because it's really an open door, Even for cases that ARE black or white. Under the guise of health anything goes.

2) In R1, You said "I believe 25 weeks is a reasonable cutoff point" for abortions. Now it sounds like you're suggesting no earlier than 27 weeks. My rule stands: Abortion should stop at the minimalist route to ending the pregnancy.

3) ok.

4) Clinics in NY now have to disclose to the Dept of Education. I am not suggesting a "cabal" of anything. But there are a lot of abortion lovers (you put yourself in that category).

5) There are more than two options: open door health "exceptions" or no-flexibility. The woman's right to an end her pregnancy must not include the killing of a viable "fetus. "

6) Now it sounds like you're suggesting no earlier than 32 weeks as a cutoff point for abortions. All laws are about caring about other people's business. This is true for traffic laws, Contract law, Tobacco/alcohol laws, Etc. Why should abortions laws be different? At times, Society finds some actions so heinous that they should be disallowed.

7) There is a point at which a fetus/baby could really survive outside the womb. For this debate, May I define this point as "practical viability"? Or if you prefer, We could use the standard "viability. " I based my R3 comments on your R1 standard of 25 weeks, But I am willing to amend that to whenever it is accurate. In some cases the fetus/baby is not viable even at full term. Practical viability would never occur in these cases.

8) uh huh.

9) I never said I was pro-life.

=== Refined Argument ===
Throughout this debate, I have been respectful of the "right to terminate pregnancy. " However, I am not aware of any "right to terminate a fetus. " I am not arguing that early abortions must stop. I am not arguing that all late abortions must stop. I am not arguing that any late abortions must stop. I am merely arguing that an abortion that unnecessarily kills the fetus/baby is really abortion + murder. This is true for all abortions after practical viability.

It is not clear when you feel practical viability is reached. You have suggested that it is at 25, 27, And 32 weeks. Perhaps it's really at 35, 36, Or 37 weeks.

Whenever and wherever practical viability is reached, An abortion must only include the termination of the woman's pregnancy. Termination of the fetus/baby is no longer the woman's business--it is murder.


1) This is intentional and the way it was planned.

2) The problem with establishing a cutoff point is that every pregnancy is different and not black and white. The circumstances behind the reason for a late term abortion are also different.

4) I am not an abortion lover, I simply see the need for limiting the human population and seeking the most ethical and economically sensible option between the two options. That baby everyone claims to care about will have a horrible life in the foster system. Kids in the foster system are 4 times more likely to be sexually assaulted and 28 times more likely to be abused. I simply care more than some. It's called tough love.

5) Most pregnancies are viable. According to the CDC:
"Stillbirth effects about 1% of all pregnancies, And each year about 24, 000 babies are stillborn in the United States. 1 That is about the same number of babies that die during the first year of life and it is more than 10 times as many deaths as the number that occur from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)"
Miscarriages occur in 15-25% of all pregnancies and the leading cause is linked to obesity, Smoking, Nutrition deficiencies and high caffeine intake.
Most of the preventable causes for stillbirths and miscarriages can be attributed to lack of education and affordable access to healthcare. We should address this before worrying about muh pur bebies.

6) Abortion is a disgusting action that shouldnt be a common procedure that is done, But it is due lack of education and poverty. You can't compare abortions with your examples.

7) I'm not a fan of semantics so both is fine. Practical viability comes with a price tag that most can't pay, So what's your alternative? If a woman gets to decide to abort or save the child and the option to save it will cost more than the abortion (E. R. Bills in the USA are stupid expensive), What should she choose?

9) So why attack late term abortions?

RA-1) Pregnancy, Fetus it's all semantics and I don't care for it. In argument (5) I state the viability of most pregnancies and statistically speaking after 13 weeks the pregnancy had a high rate of success, So the argument of viability then limits abortions beyond time and places viability before choice. The difference between a pregnancy at 13 weeks and 30 weeks is huge, So I do not think they should be considered the same.

RA-2) Should those that smoke during pregnancy, Are overweight, Do drugs and take unnecessary risk that causes a miscarriage be charged with murder? Should the parents whose child dies of SIDS be charged with murder?

RA-3) I do not establish a practical viability market due to the complexity of what practical viability entails. It's not practical for a woman that will be raising the child on her own that can barely afford enough for herself to carry the pregnancy full term. It's not practical for a couple to raise a child with multiple developmental disabilities that will require expensive long term care for their entire life. It's not practical for a young woman beginning her career to stop it just to raise a kid. There is more to viability than just time.

RA-4) False equivalence comparing a baby to a fetus. An embryo is considered a fetus after the 8th week up to birth. A fetus at 9 weeks is not the same as a fetus at 37 weeks. I can see your slippery slope arguments from a mile away.

For someone who isnt pro-life you sure do make the same arguments
Debate Round No. 4


I believe we've gone around in enough circles on the health exception. Besides, This is not important to my argument.

I apologize for calling you an abortion lover. I must have misunderstood your feelings. Thankfully, This is not important to my argument, Either.

For my part, I have never claimed to be pro-life. My position in this debate could most accurately be called "anti-fully-formed-fetus-killing. "

=== When a Fetus is identical to a Baby ===
I think I have been struggling to articulate this idea: a fully-formed-fetus. You pointed out that while in utero, The bag of mush is called a fetus after week 8 and not a baby. And you also acknowledge that a Week 8 fetus is very different from a Week 37 fetus. This is critical to my point.

At Week 37 (of 40), A birth is no longer considered premature. This seems to be a reasonable point to consider the fetus to be fully formed. Therefore, 37 weeks is what I will use to define my new term "practical viability. " At this point, There are minimal complications associated with a late abortion without fetus-killing (aka an early birth).

=== Final Argument ===
I am not asking for any abortion requests to be denied. But the new NY law is deficient in that it allows abortions to transform into murder. Since it allows abortion via fetus-killing at Week 37 (of 40) and beyond, It is allowing abortion + murder.

You have raised a few concerns with rescuing fetuses from abortion. You mentioned a woman who "can barely afford enough for herself. " I am not asking this woman to keep the fetus after her late abortion. In fact, I would prefer the rescued fetus not remain with her. You also mentioned the "expensive long-term care" for a disabled rescued fetus. I would prefer the rescued fetus not remain with the couple who had the late abortion.

Then who would take on these two rescued fetuses, And who would pay the costs?

I am sure that the richest and best nation on earth can easily (and will gladly) accept the bill for any and all fully-formed fetuses who are rescued from abortions at or after 37 weeks. Since you assure me this is a very small number, It should even be possible to fund via private donations.

Bing suggests that 1 or 2 million couples are waiting to adopt a baby. That should be more than enough to take on the fetuses that we could rescue from late abortions.

=== Foster Care ===
You have repeatedly referenced foster care as an excuse for abortions. Foster Club data for FY14 agree with you that there are over 400k kids in the foster system. Please note that since the average stay in foster care is 20 months, This number includes half from FY13 and half from FY14. Of the 200k who left foster care in FY14 (and apparently entered in FY12), The Foster Club says that only 9% aged out (about 20k). They say the majority (79%) leave into families (real parents, A relative, Or adopted parents).

Further, These aren't babies that survived abortion. Foster Club says 95% of kids entering foster care were rescued from "violence against children. " But that doesn't mean they were unwanted by their parents, Since over half eventually go back to their own parents.

As I mentioned, Bing suggests that 1 or 2 million couples are waiting to adopt. Why aren't they adopting the kids in foster care? First, There aren't enough foster kids to adopt based on Foster Club's numbers. Second, I imagine most people want to adopt a fresh new baby, Not a jaded teenager.

I cannot see any support for abortion in foster care statistics.

=== George Carlin ===
On behalf of pro-life conservatives he jadedly says that "once you're born, You're on your own. " The clear question is: Do the parents not count then? If parents are unwilling or unable to care for their kids, It would be better to give the kids to adoptive parents who will--the earlier the better. For me, Any lack of care is aimed at the deadbeat parents not the innocent kids.


kwbc forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 5
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by kwbc 3 years ago
Forgot to hit submit.

You never stated at what point a fetus is fully formed. What organs/systems need to be in place for a fetus to be considered "fully formed"/viable? 37 weeks i assume?

No doctor that performs abortions would perform an abortion on a 37 week old baby. They would simply remove the baby via C section. More than one doctor is consulted for late term abortions and the scenario you are painting is similar to an Alex Jones level conspiracy.

The "richest" (most wealth is owned by a small percent, More than 78% of americans live paycheck to paycheck) and "best" nation uses an expensive, Inefficient and anti customer health care system that bankrupts anyone who uses it. We can barely fund our current system, What makes you think people will pay more for this?

The adoption process is a long and expensive process that not all candidates are capable of passing. It's more demanding than just being knocked up. The rate at which new foster kids enter the system to the rate at which they get adopted will never even out.

Most kids that enter the foster system stay for a few days until their guardians can pick them up and the kids that stay for an extended period of time and are the ones who I am referring to.

----------Closing Statement----------

Late term abortions are statistical anomalies that should be treated as such. Abortions at this stage are more than likely caused by an unviable fetus that no one would foot the bill for or want to deal with. Abortions are an unfortunate necessity in every society. Outlawing late terms abortions only causes more harm
Posted by politicsfortherun 3 years ago
I"m Pro life but I think you both are extremely good debaters, Best of luck!
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by dsjpk5 3 years ago
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 

By using this site, you agree to our Privacy Policy and our Terms of Use.