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

abortion should be illegal including the first trimester, but not investigated nor punished*

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Post Voting Period
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after 2 votes the winner is...
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 7/1/2014 Category: Politics
Updated: 7 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,764 times Debate No: 58408
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (1)
Votes (2)




*aside from rape and mother's health, and perhaps fetal defect, abortion should be illegal including the first trimester, but not investigated nor punished in the first trimester.

given there are no legal consequences involved, these are more about arguments on principle.

abortion should be illegal, because we should recognize that we should be giving the benefit of the doubt to human life. it is clear enough that we should outlaw it, but not clear enough that we should be punishing them. for example, to establish the uncertainty, note that a snowball is not a snow man, and a lego is not lego man. same could be argued for the cell in early pregnancy. at what point does a lego or snowball become the corresponding man? it's unclear there, as it could be said to be with personhood. but, on the other hand, the earliest cell does meet the requirements for what would constitute an 'organism', albeit it could probably be viewed as more like a parasitic organism given it must live off of the mother. and it's not like every other cell, given not every other cell can grow into a person. indeed, if we saw a snowball or lego growing into the corresponding person, we wouldn't and shouldnt treat it the same as a regular snowball, lego. the pro and con about human life here are enough to say in principle we should defer to human life, but not clear enough to make any meaningful punishments for it.
human life is such a strong factor to be weighed, that it is not unreasonable for a person to be against abortion, and want to punish so as to deter and for justice's sake. but, i would not go that far. i would take that same reasoning, though, and argue that it's such a strong consideration, that it should at least be illegal, albeit with no legal consequences.

and the last reason it should be illegal in principal, is because the mother assumed the risk of pregnancy. having sex is something that can result in pregnancy. it's not like it just happened, getting pregnant, out of no where. also, while this doesn't apply at first, as the pregnancy continues, the mother assumes the fact that the pregnancy continues to exist, and she is not aborting when it is morally grayer. also, if you were to look at it in terms of analogies, there are seveeral at the end of this post that it could be compared to.

another reason why we shouldn't punish is deferment. while we are deferring to human life, we are respecting the autonomy of the woman involved. given there is uncertainty, who should decide? should the government decide? why not give the autonomy to decide to the person most affected by it, the mother?
plus,there are uncertainties involved, but there are other considerations as well. while the mother assumed the risk of pregnancy, she may have tried her best not to get pregnant, and got pregnant anyways. things happen, plus she has a lot of other things to consider like making sure she can hold down a job, or continue in school. or maybe she's poor and doesn't want to bring another kid into the mix. the common arguments in favor of abortion should be used here, as holistic approach to why she should be able to decide given the various moral considerations involved. but again, this stuff is just sufficient so as to not make legal consequences for the abortion, but not enough to make it legal.


the responsibilties in getting pregnant are like causing an accident, and rupturing someone's kidneys and causing them to lose blood. couldn't it be said that the wrong doer should be forced to give that person blood, and maybe even a kidney, at least as long as the wrong doer would not die? many insist on absolute bodily autonomy, even in an accident situation, and so would reject that. but i would argue the moral obligation is there.

another analogy. someone causes an accident in while planes are in mid air. the planes crash on the island of the person who caused the crash. the person who caused the crash should not be able to evict the victim, by tossing them to sea, or killing them.
you could replace planes and islands, with cars and the wrong doers home.

it is also like. and this is bizarre but it is not much more bizarre that that 'well respected' (really a joke of a publication) violinist debate. you cause a car accident. the victim is caused to be attached to you kidneys. they are sustained by your kidneys and need them for awihle to live. hardly no one would say the person who caused the accident should be able to kill the victim.

and what makes birth the magic point that changes the parents responsibitlies? a person could argue... the child was a burglar in my house. i let the burglar stay until he was ready to leave. then i let him leave. why am i obligated to take care of them... they were burglars to begin with and i was going a nice thing for them letting them stay.
society might have laws that frown on this thinking, but if you take the burglar analogy to its consequence, it was still a burglar at birth too. you just happened to let him live awhile instead of legally killing him. why should mother's liberty continue to be hindered due to someone who came as a burglar to begin with?
this shouldn't be allowed, i'm just taking the 'burglar' analogy to its consequence.


Some of your analogies were somewhat unclear to me, but I've tried my best to understand your true meaning. :) Please correct me if I misread your argument.

Rebuttals to your argument first, then my arguments second.

"abortion should be illegal including the first trimester, but not investigated nor punished in the first trimester."

I'm sorry to say this, but if there is no consequence, people will do whatever. For example, imagine that pranking your least favorite teacher at school was not allowed, but you wouldn't get any punishment or email sent home if you did it. It's pretty safe to assume that the teacher would be pranked by someone. True, many people are law-abiding citizens, but there's absolutely no point of having a law if its not going to be followed by all. Plus, if its not even investigated, the government won't even know when their laws are being broken.

" the mother assumed the risk of pregnancy. having sex is something that can result in pregnancy"

True enough, but birth control sometimes fails, and condoms break. People make mistakes, and peer pressure is strong. People should not have to give up the freedoms of being their age to take care of a baby they don't want. Teen mothers can be subject to more bullying and don't have as many opportunities (either vocational or education or social). And, say the mother keeps the baby, and sends it to an orphanage, orphanages are miserable places. Kids in orphanages feel worthless, and unwanted. I can testify to that with some of my own experiences with orphaned, abandoned, or surrendered kids. 50% of pregnancies are unwanted in the US. The population will increase WAY too fast if abortion is completely banned.

I'm going to address some of your other points in my own argument.

Money, National Defecit (US statistics, but will have similar effects in other countries)

As determined by the Congressional Budget Office, a ban on all abortions after 20 weeks would increase the federal defecit by $225 million dollars over 9 years. This increases the number of taxes people have to pay, and is economically harder on the nation because taxes will rise. Abortions after 20 weeks shouldn't be banned, because people have reasons for waiting. Many people are unable to afford an abortion and have to save. If it is banned after 20 weeks, these people will have to spend a lot of their time and income on having the baby, and then are more likely to qualify for programs that help the economically disadvantaged, costing the defecit more money. 42% of women who want abortions are below the federal poverty level. Why drag them down further with a baby?

Health of the Woman

With modern technologies, having an abortion is safer than ever. A woman has a .6/100,000 chance of dying during an abortion, and an 8.8/100,000 chance of dying during birth. Medical organizations like NCI, and ACS have disproven the idea that abortion increases the risk of breast cancer, and abortion is "one of the safest medical procedures performed in America" according to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.

It's been scientifically proven that fetuses cannot feel pain. NIH has a great article about the science of it (nerve endings, examples, comparisons, at this link;)

17,900,000. That's a big number. 153,000,000. That's another big number. Combine them, and you get 170,900,000. That's the number of orphaned/half orphaned kids in the world. We don't need more babies. Being pro-life is when you care more about

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Debate Round No. 1


con's argument is a little confusing because she points out that abortion would not effecitvely be hindered if there are no punishments. then she goes on to argue in favor of abortion. at first glance, it might seem con is arguing that if we want abortion to be hindered we have to have teeth to the laws. she must just be pointing out that an ineffective law can be argued to be pointless. i don't think it's pointless, though, for all the reasons i gave above, as a matter of principle. and it's not truly ineffective, as when things like that are stated as a matter of principle, it does affect their thinking.

most of con's points are in regards to why abortion is good for society. in fact, with my approach, abortion won't effectively change if we kept my approach, as even con admits. so, all the good to society can still come. .............
but there's more than that, if we argue te principles involved. we have the means of caring for children, if we want to, when they are born. financially and as a matter of scientific possibility. would you rather die or be born? most would rather be born.
does con have a point, that as a society, we can value reduced poverty over putative life? yes, con does have a point. but the factors in favor of it being a true person, as i stated above, are too overwhelming to overlook. we should defer to human life. will that effectively cause more poverty? yes. should it? no. and again, im sure if you ask any of those in those poverty situations if they would have rather been aborted, almost none of htem would say yes.

con really had no point in bringing up that abortion is safe. it has no bearing on whether we in principle ban abortinon or not. at least, it has no bearing given i didn't contest or say otherwise.

con really had no point in bring up that babies feel no pain, as i didn't contest or says othewise. but given she does bring it up, i would argue we should defer to when the infants feel pain. it is usually estimated they start to feel pain at twenty weeks. some push it back to eighteen. if we have to use pain killers to cause abortions without pain, which i admit are possible, that should tell us something about the morality of what they are doing.

con has some points about finances of the mother. it is just a noteworthy reason the mother would have to wait to abort. all that does is lessen her culpability for not aborting sooner. it doesn't diminish her culpability for aborting at all. again, for all the reasons i said, she and the father are responsible for her situation.
that said, the fact that i was willing to say 'no punishments' is testament to the fact that if they choose to abort, they can, without punishment. that doesn't mean we condone it, and it even doesn't mean that we keep it legal or 'permissible'. we still are against it, even if we understand and effectively allow it to happen.


I'm sorry that I confused you. My point was that your main topic of the debate doesn't make sense because laws with no punishment will not be followed as strictly as laws that do have punishment. You are arguing the Pro side, which means that you support the initial claim, I, as Con, am pointing out that even if I agreed with your ideas on the morality of abortion (I don't) , putting a non-punitive law in effect is useless. Deliberately creating loopholes in a law is not a good idea. Your principle is good, but the entire population of any place will not be moral and follow laws "because its the right thing to do".

Banning abortion won't change it in society? If a law making abortion illegal is passed, abortion will change in society. More people will seek illegal or at-home abortions, and perhaps some will see the baby to birth. If something is illegal, the government cannot have standards and laws regulating abortion doctors, making abortion less safe, and providing less therapy opportunities for those who must have an abortion.

Many people don't have enough money or time to care for children. It is an incorrect assumption to assume that everyone who wants an abortion will be able to afford a baby. And government orphanages and child support groups help the "can't afford a child situtation" but it is still overly expensive for many people to have a baby. And I would prefer to have an abortion than to have a child raised in poor, possibly abusive, circumstances.

A fetus isn't a child. In the US, the only people that really have rights are people with citizenship, a green card, or some form of legal residency. Those aren't given to fetuses, implying that they aren't a full member of society. Also, age is only counted from after birth. (BIRTH-day). Lastly, the fetus is entirely dependant on the mother, and while it is physically attached to the mother, I would consider it to be part of her and therefore her decision.

I raised those points to argue some of my own points. I thought it was an important statistic to know that childbirth is 14x more risky than an abortion. Mothers should have a choice to take the risks of an abortion.

If the fetus can't feel pain, regardless of whether painkillers are needed or not, then I would say that its humane. Not to rant, but millions of people die in wars in pain. Millions of people slowly, agonizingly, starve to death in pain. I don't think its that bad to be given a painkiller and then die free of pain.

I refuted those arguments above in in my first argument. And I have another point, if abortion is legal in rape etc., then I bet a lot of women would claim to be raped by someone in order to get an abortion.
I didn't repeat them, but I rechecked the sources listed in my first argument.

Debate Round No. 2


dairygirl4u2c forfeited this round.


I extend my arguments. Vote Con!
Debate Round No. 3
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by MistyBlue 7 years ago
The pictures that didn't show up are these, pictures of a fetus.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by 9spaceking 7 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: ff and pro's lack of sources guarantee con a victory.
Vote Placed by whiteflame 7 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Fundamentally, this debate comes down to the basic question of why principle is important without enforcement, and I don't think Pro ever answers that question. If something is wrong in principle, as Pro says these abortions are, then is there not a need to try and prevent them? Why is a principle an important thing to uphold by itself without changing practices? Pro needs to show that this is more than just principle - that it's going to change people's minds or affect outcomes in some way. Without knowing that, Pro's case has no impact. If there's a reason to prefer principle without any impact whatsoever, then that needs to be made clear. There has to be some reason why this case is beneficial to society. Merely setting a good principle is not an impact, and without clarity, I can't support her case.

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