"Abortion / Pro-Life / Pro-Choice" Essays

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Supreme Court in Many Respects, the Justice Research Paper

Research Paper  |  3 pages (1,125 words)
Bibliography Sources: 3


Supreme Court

In many respects, the justice behind the Supreme Court decisions is nearly as important as the decisions themselves. It is said that no one knows how a justice will act once joining this illustrious 12-panel legislative body, and that has been true time and time again. When Justice Stevens, who just announced his retirement after 34 years, was first nominated, the liberals were concerned about his previous conservative decisions. In fact, Stevens not only became a centrist, but someone who carefully reviewed both sides of an issue before making his final decision. As the New York Times (2010) said, Justice Stevens "may be the last justice from a time when ability and independence, rather than perceived ideology, were viewed as the crucial qualifications for a seat on the court." Stevens authored over 400 majority opinions on nearly every issue thinkable, such as immigration, abortion, death penalty, school prayer, campaign finance, and term limits. One of the most noteworthy decisions, which continued the impact of an earlier decision, was his distinct ruling and arbitration actions in the review of Roe v Wade in 1992 with Planned Parenthood V Casey.

In the original highly controversial Roe v Wade, by a vote of 7 to 2, the Supreme Court overturned a Texas law prohibiting abortions not necessary to save the woman's life and decided that "any governmental interference with [a woman's] right is subject to strict judicial scrutiny." It also recognized a state's right to "regulate the abortion procedure after the first trimester of pregnancy in ways necessary to promote women's health" and stated that "after the point of fetal viability -- approximately 24 to 28 weeks -- a state may, to protect the potential life of the fetus, prohibit abortions not necessary to preserve the woman's life or health" (As cited in Stanton, 2005).

Despite the ruling, abortion has continued to be a very emotional topic in American politics. During the decade after the Court's decisions, Roe v. Wade was regularly upheld except for using public funding for the abortion. However, in the 1990s, as the country and Court became more conservative, the rulings started shifting. In Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania v. Casey in 1992, by a 5 to4 ruling the Court once again affirmed "the essential holding" of Roe v. Wade, but upheld a provision of the Pennsylvania Abortion Control Act that required "physicians to provide patients with anti-abortion information to discourage women from obtaining abortions." More critically, the four opposing views came from Justices Rehnquist, Scalia, Thomas, and White, who voted to "uphold the challenged (state) provisions and overturn Roe completely, stating that it was wrongly decided and the Constitution does not protect the right to choose." Only Blackman and Stevens voted to continue to "protect the right to choose as a fundamental right under Roe by subjecting state restrictions to strict scrutiny"

Across the country, momentum was building to reverse the original Roe v Wade. For example, a summary paper produced by NARAL-Pro-Choice America, "Roe v.… [read more]

Readings in Moral Philosophy Term Paper

Term Paper  |  9 pages (3,744 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


¶ … Moral Philosophy

First Reading: Why Abortion is Immoral

Author Don Marquis's view justifies the immorality of abortion on identical grounds with that of the immorality of killing an adult human being. Akin to killing an adult human which is prima facie wrongful as it denies him of a future life, killing a fetus also deprives it of a… [read more]

Abortion and Class Bias Term Paper

Term Paper  |  5 pages (1,522 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


Removing abortion policy from constitutional jurisdiction and placing it under the jurisdiction of individual states raises the danger of violating the rights of poor women to safe medical care. This risks unequal application of the constitutional right to privacy. While some states like California passed broad abortion-rights legislation ensuring the right to abortion should the Supreme Court overturn Roe vs. Wade (Sappenfield), this would not help a woman in Missouri who is too ill or too poor to travel.

In conclusion, in the 1950s through the 1960s, state law has proven inadequate in protecting a woman's right to privacy, medical care and decisions regarding pregnancy. The best way to ensure equal protection for all women - whether rich or poor - is to ensure that abortion remains protected through Constitutional law.

Works Cited

Andryszewski, Tricia. 1996. Abortion: Rights, Option and Choices. Brookfield: The Millbrook Press, Inc.

Guernsey, JoAnn Bren. 1993. Abortion: Understanding the Controversy. Minneapolis: Lerner Publications Company.

Politt, Katha. 1997. "Abortion in American History." Atlantic Monthly May: 111-115.

Sappenfield, Mark. 2002. "California Passes Broad Abortion-Rights Legislation." Christian Science Monitor. September 13: 2+.

Swomley, John. 2002. "Analysis of the Roman Catholic Bishops' November 1998 Political Pastoral Statement 'Living the Gospel of Life: A Challenge to American…… [read more]

Women's Issues the Right Article Review

Article Review  |  2 pages (670 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1


However, an individual may not have access to a provider that offers abortions, and such individuals would become marginalized by ANDA.

Additionally, Lopez weakens her argument by simplistically dismissing opposing viewpoints as "ha (ving) the monopoly on drama" (p. 40). She criticizes Stark for stating that the bill "should really be called the First Step Toward Outlawing Abortion Act" (p. 40). However, Lopez is even more "dramatic" than Stark, insulting Hilary Clinton with the back-handed compliment that "Common sense and fairness, evidently, do not always elude the junior senator from New York" (p. 43). Similarly, Lopez states, with regard to the pro-choice opponents to ANDA, that "It is desperation -- being on the losing end of the debate, watching the emanations and penumbras of a culture of life have more and more influence -- that makes them advocate less freedom for their opponents. Specifically, Lopez simplifies the viewpoints of the pro-life community to the point of distortion. The opponents of ANDA do not advocate less freedom for their opponents but rather more freedom -- the freedom of the individual to have the ability to receive an abortion if they so desire. Lopez implies that ANDA opponents wish harm upon the pro-ANDA camp, when in fact the pro-choice community advocates freedom for everyone. By resorting to personal insults, Lopez distracts from the central issues involved in ANDA.

Perhaps Lopez's greatest logical fallacy is her implicit belief that the hospital invariably acts in the best interest of the individual. If one gives the hospital the right to choose whether or not to perform abortions, the hospital will act in its own best interests. The only way for people to ensure that their basic human rights are protected is to place freedom in the hands of the public rather than the institution.


Lopez, K.J. (Fall 2002). "The Right to Choose? Really?" The…… [read more]

Procedure by Another Name Essay

Essay  |  3 pages (1,094 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


Ethic Involved in the Partial Birth Abortion Issues

When a pregnant woman learns that her baby is dying inside her, and that might put her own live in the balance, even though that discovery wasn't made until her 8th month of pregnancy, is it ethical or moral for her to have an abortion? On the other hand, does the government (state, federal, regional or local) have the moral authority to tell the pregnant woman she can't have a late-term abortion even though she may die if she doesn't have that abortion? These issues and other relative to partial-birth (or late-term) abortions will be reviewed and critiqued in this paper. Both sides of the issue will be presented.

What was the Decision Scenario ethical problem in this case?

Tammy Watts learned during her eighth month of pregnancy that her baby had trisomy 13, which is an abnormality in the chromosomal make up "that causes severe deformities" with no hope the child will be alive when it is born. Technically the procedure she asked to have performed was "intact dilation and extraction"; also known as the partial-birth abortion procedure. Watts and other women that had partial-birth abortions due to life-and-death matters testified before Congress that they may have died if they had not gone through with the late term abortion. One of the women who testified was Vikki Stella, who stated that "No women have these procedures for trivial reasons… they have them because it's their own choice."

What was the Supreme Court's decision against partial-birth abortions based on?

According to Professor Tim O'Brien (from Nova Southeastern University Law School) "The Court did acknowledge that women have a constitutional right to choose abortion," but the Court also asserted that the government "has a legitimate interest in protecting potential human life," O'Brien told Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) anchor Bob Abernethy. Abernethy reminded O'Brien that the five justices in the majority are Roman Catholic; he asked O'Brien what the justices would say if they were asked about their religious ethics vis-a-vis this abortion issue. O'Brien replied, "I'm sure they would say that religion had nothing to do with it" that they were simply interpreting the Constitution. The reason many pro-choice leaders were upset with the Court's 2007 decision against partial-birth abortions is that a few years ago they "rejected a similar ban" on a 5-4 vote. Of course, what O'Brien didn't say was that in the interim, George W. Bush appointed to conservatives to the High Court as two other justices retired.

What are the competing ethical issues in this matter?

Opposition to the Court's ethics: The court case in question was Gonzales vs. Carhart, 2007 and it was for all to see a purely political statement by the five Republicans (who also happen to be Roman Catholics) who represent the majority on the High Court G.W. Bush, who was elected on the strength of a huge number of conservative Christians, placed two of the five majority members there, both (Catholics and Republicans) find… [read more]

American History - Roe V Wade Research Proposal

Research Proposal  |  8 pages (2,441 words)
Style: Chicago  |  Bibliography Sources: 5


American History - Roe v Wade


In 1969, Norma McCorvey became pregnant and sought to terminate the pregnancy through surgical abortion but was unable to because in her home state of Texas, abortion was illegal except in extreme cases of medical necessity. At that time, only three states in the entire nation permitted… [read more]

Woman's Right to Choose Is Important Essay

Essay  |  2 pages (722 words)
Style: MLA  |  Bibliography Sources: 3


¶ … woman's right to choose is important, to society and to women in general. There are two distinct camps on the debate on abortion in America. One supports a woman's right to choose what to do with her body, while the other supports the rights of the unborn child. Both sides have arguments and assessments to convince others about their positions. It has legally been a woman's right to choose an abortion or not since Roe vs. Wade passed in 1972, and that is the grounds of this argument today. As one writer notes, "Roe ignited an ongoing debate about the proper regulation of abortion. What many regard as the nation's most divisive issue has taken on a language of its own, based on the Court's decision in Roe, subsequent eases, and prevailing social and legal thought" (Roy 339). Even today, people debate the relevance of abortion, and the warrant of its relevance in society.

Those who support a right to choose claim that a woman's body is her own, and she should have the right to choose what to do with it. Statistics show that in 1972, 586,760 abortions were performed in this country, while in 1995, 1,210,883 were performed (CDC). Proponents argue that these children would have been unwanted, would probably have grown up in poverty, and were often born to young, unmarried women who had little of the backing necessary from society or their families to successfully raise these children.

The qualifiers and rebuttals to this pro-choice argument are many, as well. One of their main points is religious opposition to abortion on moral and spiritual grounds. Another author notes, "The primary argument against the right to choose has it that 'personhood' begins at 'conception,' that fertilized eggs, embryos, and fetuses are 'persons' or 'unborn persons.' This is a view with very little historical precedent, essentially a Vatican invention in the latter part of the nineteenth century" (Doerr 40). The Catholic Church vehemently opposes abortion, and does not condone it for any of its members, and many other groups object on moral grounds, as well. While it is clear abortion is a very personal and moral decision,…… [read more]

Obama and Mccain Ethics Essay

Essay  |  3 pages (1,003 words)
Style: MLA  |  Bibliography Sources: 3


McCain/Obama Comparison

One ethical issue that separates Barack Obama and John McCain is the matter of abortion. This is probably one of the most divisive ethical and political issues in the country. Some votes feel so strongly about the pro-life pro-choice matter that they will vote solely on this issue. The issue has undergone a rejuvenation of sorts with the selection of Sarah Palin as John McCain's Republican running mate for the presidential election.

The history of this issue goes back to the early nineteenth century. Abortions were not criminal offenses "before the 'quickening' of the fetus" (Bardes 128). During the last part of the century, however, abortions were considered illegal with severe punishment. By 1973, abortions were illegal in most states. However, with the issue of an individual's right to privacy, the Supreme Court accepted the argument in favor of Jane Roe, who claimed it was her right to privacy to have an abortion. The court did not address the issue of when life begins they only agreed that a woman has the right to choose. In 1973, the court decided that privacy is a broad enough term to include pregnant women. Since then, the issue is debated fiercely.

Abortion is usually one of the main issues that divide liberals and conservatives. Liberals tend to favor freedom and choice and conservatives tend to favor life. As it might be guessed, candidates usually stand divided on this issue. According to his website, Barack Obama understands that "abortion is a divisive issue, and... has been a consistent champion of reproductive choice and will make preserving women's rights under Roe v. Wade a priority as President" (barackobama.com). McCain's website illustrates a very different view of choice. According to his website, he believes "Roe v. Wade is a flawed decision that must be overturned, and as president he will nominate judges who understand that courts should not be in the business of legislating from the bench" (johnmccain.com). There is a difference between these candidates. When we hear that people are voting issues instead of people, this is one of the issues for which they will vote.

This issue is relevant during election cycles because the president has the power to nominate Supreme Court judges. This selection could affect the future of the country many years down the line considering that judges can serve life terms. Voters that are passionate about this issue will consider this fact when they vote. A more liberal president can nominate liberal judges that can vote liberally for decades if they become a Supreme Court justice just like a conservative president can do just the opposite. Many voters see this issue as one that hangs in the balance and will cast their votes for the man or woman that believers the way they do.

Both sides of this issue have equally powerful interest group representation. Liberals have many feminists and others that believe it should be a woman's right to choose. Those on this side of the issue believe… [read more]

U.S. Government Interfere With Existing Federal Law Term Paper

Term Paper  |  5 pages (1,806 words)
Style: APA  |  Bibliography Sources: 2


¶ … U.S. government interfere with existing federal law that gives the decision to abort a child or not to abort the woman's along to make, in her own private way? The first point-of-view in this paper will be to answer the question above with a firm "no."

Background and Facts on the Abortion Issue

In 1973, the High Court… [read more]

Roe vs. Wade Term Paper

Term Paper  |  1 pages (358 words)
Bibliography Sources: 0


Political Science

Roe V. Wade

Roe vs. Wade is the controversial Supreme Court ruling established in January 1973. In simple terms, the ruling allowed women to get abortions from their doctors or medical facilities during the first trimester (the first three months of pregnancy). The decision said denying abortions denied a constitutional guarantee to the right to privacy. It gave women the right to choose what to do with their own bodies, and it has been controversial ever since. The camps are divided into "pro-choice," who want the ruling upheld, and "pro-life," who want to see the ruling overturned on moral, religious, and the rights of the unborn child issues.

The Supreme Court should not overturn Roe vs. Wade, because women should be able to choose to have a child or not. The rights of the mother outweigh the rights of the unborn child. If the mother's health is an issue, the mother has the right to choose her health over the child, and to attempt another pregnancy at another time. In addition, from a legal standpoint, Roe vs.…… [read more]

Euthanasia Should Non-Profit Organizations Be the Mouthpiece Term Paper

Term Paper  |  5 pages (2,182 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+



Should non-profit organizations be the mouthpiece for those who cannot speak for themselves?

President Kaunda of Zambia once said [1]: "Inability of those in power to still the voices of their own conscience is the great force leading to desirable changes."

There are plenty of examples where those who are at the receiving end of indignation are unable to… [read more]

Supreme Court Case Planned Parenthood vs. Casey Term Paper

Term Paper  |  6 pages (2,088 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


Planned Parenthood v. Casey (1992)

Argued April 22, 1992; Decided June 29, 1992

Background of the Casey Supreme Court

Supreme Court which heard Planned Parenthood v. Casey consisted of Justices Rehnquist, Scalia, Souter, O'Connor, Kennedy, Blackmun, Stevens, White and Thomas.

William Rehnquist: He was nominated by President Nixon to the Supreme Court in 1971 and as Chief Justice by President… [read more]

Social Philosophy of Martin Luther Term Paper

Term Paper  |  3 pages (986 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


Perhaps equally significant is the means why which Kings attempts to achieve his goals. King is a staunch supporter of the peaceful protest. He tells his supporters to remain nonviolent at all times-to never strike back, no matter what injustices are performed. In the same letter, King writes, "I have earnestly opposed violent tension, but there is a type of constructive, nonviolent tension which is necessary for growth, ..., we see the need for nonviolent gadflies to create the kind of tension in society that will help men rise from the dark depths of prejudice and racism to the majestic heights of understanding and brotherhood" (King 1963). King realizes the need to create tension-to draw attention to his cause, yet he understands imperatively the need to remain peaceful. The nonviolent approach will almost always draw sympathy over time, while the violent one increases hostilities and polarizes groups.

The second source of King's philosophy is a speech he gave to striking sanitation workers in Memphis, TN. Like the letter to his civil rights constituents, he emphasizes the need for peaceful protest in order to obtain civil rights and liberties. In his speech, King points out the detrimental effects that violence can have on a peaceful protest, "That's always the problem with a little violence. You know what happened the other day, and the press dealt only with the window-breaking. I read the articles. They very seldom got around to mentioning the fact that one thousand, three hundred sanitation workers were on strike, and that Memphis is not being fair to them, and that Mayor Loeb is in dire need of a doctor. They didn't get around to that" (King 1968).

King's social philosophy was one that sought to bring equality to all men. He wanted an end brought to the injustices of the South, and the principles and enumerations of the Constitution rightfully respected. Of paramount importance in his quest, King believed, was the use of nonviolent protest. He acknowledged the need for tension and attention, but also recognized the harm that violent action could entail.

Like King, modern day proponents and opponents of abortion seek their "definition" of civil rights and civil liberties. Some believe the fetus is entitled to the protections afforded the rest of the country's citizens. Others believe the fetus is not a living entity, and that the mother has a right to choose the fate of the fetus inside of her. Regardless of who is right or wrong, the ultimate outcome of this disagreement will more than likely result from the side, which causes tension, yet does it nonviolently. The fact that both sides have failed to adapt this successful social philosophy is evident in the fact that neither side seems to be clearly "winning the war."

Works Cited

King Jr., Martin Luther. 1963. "Letter From Birmingham Jail." Almaz Website.


King Jr., Martin Luther. 1968. "I've Been to the Mountaintop." Afscme.org.

www.afscme.org/about/kingspch.htm.… [read more]

Heather D's Decision Case Study

Case Study  |  2 pages (587 words)
Bibliography Sources: 0


Selective abortion, from a medical standpoint, has its place. For example, to ensure success of IV treatment, multiple embryos are often implanted. This decreases the cost to the couple and also the stress upon the woman's body. However, to ensure a healthy pregnancy, some embryos usually must be eliminated, given the risks of multiple births.

Heather and her husband have several options. The first is that they can put aside their moral qualms and use selective implantation. Psychologically, this is likely to be less traumatic for Heather and her husband, although medically and morally it is not dissimilar to an early abortion. Heather can also elect a selective abortion after the fact, if the fetus is positive for the disease. If the fetus is not positive for Huntington's, then the couple can simply proceed with the pregnancy.

The second option is to carry the pregnancy to term without any screening, but Heather has indicated she does not find this acceptable. It should be noted that Huntington's disease does not develop until the person is in middle age, although the ethical questions of bringing a child to term that will have a severely shortened lifespan remain. Additionally, Heather and her husband may need to consider the possibility that the child may become dependent upon them for the rest of its life in middle age, if he develops the disorder. The third option is adoption, which avoids the moral qualms altogether. However, regardless of what she chooses, given her fifty percent risk of developing Huntington's, before embarking upon a pregnancy and having a child she might not be able to raise into adulthood, Heather…… [read more]

Ethical Egoism &amp Abortion Research Paper

Research Paper  |  10 pages (3,618 words)
Bibliography Sources: 5


The formula of universal law seems to offer a method for evaluating maxims of abortion that eschews the contentious question of whether the fetus is a person. This method also appears to render unnecessary the task of locating one duty in relation to which to understand abortion. (Dennis 2007, 547-8)

In other words, the Kantian ethical school -- against which… [read more]

Anti-Abortion "Any Country That Accepts Term Paper

Term Paper  |  3 pages (996 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+



"Any country that accepts abortion is not teaching its people to love but to use violence to get what they want. This is why the greatest destroyer of love and peace is abortion." Mother Teresa

The issues relating to abortion and pro-life hold moral ramifications and just as important the damage it does to the body of the female having the abortion. There are other reasons for not having an abortion including human emotions, psychological state, and medical aspects. Is it worth destroying not only the life of one child but possibly ruining the chance to ever give birth? I argue the risks and the after effects caused by abortions are just as wrong as the abortion itself. One has to wonder if morals even exist anymore.

Literature Review

As an adopted child, I can relate to the issue of anti-abortion from a personal level, "that could have been me." I intend to demonstrate the reasons for being pro-life form the aspects of moral ethics and especially in the terms of the lasting after effects. Abortions can play on the physical and emotional states of the woman long after the procedure is done. Lifestyle.iloveindia.com (2010) in the web article, "Reasons against Abortion," reports the following reasons:

Abortion is considered strictly against the ethics of a civil society, as it is akin to murder. It punishes the innocent inborn child, by taking away its right to live.

The visible complications arising from abortion are recurrent miscarriages, premature or still births, blocked fallopian tubes and weakened cervix. It can even weaken a woman's reproductive system.

Abortion may lessen the chances of a woman conceiving easily in the future.

Abortion is considered to be one of the reasons for increased cases of breast, uterine and cervical cancer in women.

A woman may incur stress-related problems after undergoing an abortion. Apart from that, she may also fall prey to depression, if she suffers from the guilt of killing her unborn child.

Any one of these should be compelling enough to make a person stop and think about what they are doing.

An embryo is a living, breathing, and growing life form. To say that it is not alive or a human being is wrong. A child is not an adult but a growing human being that will turn out to be an adult. An embryo is growing inside the mother to be the child. Sarah Brown was born severely disabled due to a failed abortion. A loving family adopted Sarah and even though she could not see, talk, or walk; raised her in their home. She loved music, turning her head to the sound and she loved people. She changed the lives of the family and brought a lot of joy. Sarah died at 5 years old from complications due to the late term abortion attempt (Wichita Eagle, 1998). Many parents are out there that do not have or cannot have children. They would love to adopt a child but the…… [read more]

Abortion Visual Images Work Term Paper

Term Paper  |  2 pages (805 words)
Bibliography Sources: 0



Visual images work particularly well in conveying the essential points of the pro-life stance: nothing can be more disheartening and disturbing than a picture of a bloody baby or dead fetus. The Abortion Gallery on the Internet provides particularly powerful visual imagery that conveys the central message that abortion is immoral. Vivid, poignant, full-color photographs of aborted embryos and fetuses are displayed on a simple black background flanked by towers of flame. If the individual thumbnails are not enough to get the viewer thinking deeply on the subject of abortion, clicking on an image will render it in larger size. The primary purpose of the Abortion Gallery, therefore, is to rely on the impact of visual images to argue against the practice of abortion. Pictures portray what words cannot: the horrific consequences of abortion and its essentially being murder. With the abortion issue, logic and reasoning rarely make much of an impact on changing someone's mind. Visual imagery, on the other hand, can work wonders. The images portrayed on the Abortion Pages evoke such emotions as fear, anger, and horror. The conviction that the practice of abortion is wrong is essentially an emotional one, which is why visual images prove particularly powerful.

The realm of the visual transcends logic and reasoning and goes straight for the gut. This is especially true in the case of the online Abortion Gallery. There, a visitor finds dozens of horrifying pictures of aborted embryos and fetuses. The texture and color of these pictures is gruesome, evoking the horrendous nature of the abortion act. Any person considering getting an abortion will look at these images and realize that they will be inflicting the same onto their unborn baby. Some of the pictures show the embryos in relation to adult human hands, emphasizing the fact that we adults should be protective custodians of all human life. The website also includes ultrasounds that depict the unborn child sucking its thumb. Some of the photos are particularly gory, almost like scenes from a horror film. Therefore, the same emotions that one associates with horror films are conveyed through this website.

As abortion is one of the most controversial and sensitive issues facing American culture today, the Abortion Pages are situated at the forefront of the modern debate. Moreover, as they are arranged on a website, they offer the entire world a peek at the crime of abortion. The Internet…… [read more]

Bioethics Definitions Autonomy: "Personal Rule Essay

Essay  |  3 pages (1,332 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


Bioethics Definitions

Autonomy: "personal rule of the self that is free from both controlling interferences by others and from personal limitations that prevent meaningful choice" (Pantilat 2008).

Non-maleficence: Not intending to cause harm to others -- 'to do no harm' according to Hippocratic principles

Beneficence: "Beneficence is action that is done for the benefit of others. Beneficent actions can be taken to help prevent or remove harms or to simply improve the situation of others" (Pantilat 2008).

Fidelity: Being faithful to the commitment made to one's professional ethics and to the patient under care

Reparation: Making someone 'whole' again, after an injury has been done, or making amends in a way to specifically address the harms that were done by the perpetrator's wrong

Palliative care: Care focused upon relieving the pain of patients suffering from serious illnesses, versus curing them

Meta-ethics: The branch of ethics that strives to understand the principles behind ethical systems, versus practical questions

Normative ethics: The study of ethics in practice

Justice: Treating patients fairly and equitably, regardless of who they are (including their ability to pay, race or ethnicity, gender, age, etcetera).

Falsification: According to Popper, for a statement to be considered scientific truth, it must be falsifiable (able to be proven false)

Fabrication: Falsifying data or other evidence for nefarious purposes such as self-enrichment

Ethics: Formal systems by which individuals make decisions about right and wrong

Morality: The ideas about right and wrong established by consensus over time with in a society

Virtue ethics: Ethics that focuses upon building a good character to generate good actions

Deontological: Ethical worldview that focuses upon obeying timeless principles applicable to all occasions

Utilitarianism: Ethical system that focuses in doing the greatest good for the greatest number of people

Consequentialism: Ethical system that focuses on the consequences of actions, versus their intentions

Advanced directive: A medical directive issued detailing what should be done if the person is no longer capable of making decisions for him or herself

Medical power of attorney: "a document, signed by a competent adult, i.e., "principal," designating a person that the principal trusts to make health care decisions on the principal's behalf should the principal be unable to make such decisions. The individual chosen to act on the principal's behalf is referred to as an agent" (Medical power of attorney, 1999, Texas Medical Association)

Ethical egoism: The idea that the ethical agent's first responsibility is to act in his or her own self-interest

Ethical altruism: The idea that people have a moral obligation to help others

Pluripotent: "Pluripotent cells can give rise to all of the cell types that make up the body; embryonic stem cells are considered pluripotent" (What is the difference between totipotent, pluripotent, and multipotent, 2013, NY State stem cell science).

Totipotent: "Totipotent cells can form all the cell types in a body, plus the extraembryonic, or placental, cells" (What is the difference between totipotent, pluripotent, and multipotent, 2013, NY State stem cell science).

Therapeutic cloning: Cloning specific cells to heal… [read more]

Abortion Donna Only Half the Patients Term Paper

Term Paper  |  5 pages (1,652 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+




Only half the patients who go into an abortion clinic come out alive."

Author Unknown 1980

Abortion is immoral, cannot be justified under any circumstances and is associated with several complications. The definition of a fetus according to the Crystal Reference Encyclopedia is "The fetal stage begins seven to eight weeks after fertilization of the egg, when the… [read more]

Abortion to Poverty Term Paper

Term Paper  |  7 pages (2,244 words)
Bibliography Sources: 4


The best instance is the Thornburg Case, which enjoys the privilege of precedence. In the case, court decided that abortions were not to be restricted. A different alternative was more effective, where women were to be informed on abortion and its repercussions, the risks involved in the procedures of inducing abortion, record keeping of all incidences of abortion and rescuing… [read more]

Abortion Term Paper

Term Paper  |  7 pages (2,322 words)
Style: APA  |  Bibliography Sources: 5


Evaluation and Assessment of the Alternatives

The above mentioned policy alternatives are outlined on the idea that it is the government's responsibility to provide welfare support to the underprivileged groups and that public and socio-economic welfare must be given a priority above political motives. This however does not mean that the views and sentiments of those who deem a practice… [read more]

Abortion in Politics the Argument Term Paper

Term Paper  |  8 pages (2,649 words)
Bibliography Sources: 9


(Davis et al. 283-306)

The separation of State and the Church implies, in principle, the recognition of the existence of a separate and independent civil society of the State. Second, is a relative notion between two realities which require the State to define precisely, especially with legal or political disputes? It is the State and not the Church, which is… [read more]

When Does Life Begin? Term Paper

Term Paper  |  2 pages (580 words)
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¶ … life begin?

The issue of whether life begins at conception or at a later time is one of constant deliberation in today's society. The arguments for both sides of the issue stem from years of research in human biology, stem cells, abortion, DNA, and ethical issues. In the end, the research has shown convincingly that "life" does not begin at conception, but rather, during the third trimester of life.

According to Mary Ann Warren, there are two senses of being human. First, there is a genetic human, or one that holds the genetic makeup of a human. Secondly, there is a human that is a person, and thus has rights by morality. Warren believes that being a genetic human is not equal to being a person, and that those with only a sense of genetic humanity cannot be said to have "life." To be a person, Warren argues, a genetic person must be conscious of objects, events, or internal conditions, particularly in terms of pain sensation, must be able to develop reason, must be able to achieve self-motivated behaviors, independent of genetic or external control, must be able to communicate in some way, and must be self-aware (Warren, 223). Warren's point, then, is that life begins at the point where the genetic human becomes a person that is capable of feelings, thinking, reasoning, and communicating. Thus, life begins far after conception.

Biologically, during the first twenty-four weeks, the fetus requires a mother's womb in order to survive. Organs are being developed, including the brain and lungs, and the body is being fed by the mother. Without the womb, the child would perish, since the organs are simply not developed enough to enable survival. Until the lungs are capable…… [read more]

Abortion on Our Communities Term Paper

Term Paper  |  2 pages (638 words)
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The methodology for the research will be on the basis of secondary research. Internet is going to be the major source of information along with journals and other published magazines of public policy issues and other related topics. The Primary research method will be based on a questionnaire with close ended questions.

Tentative Bibliography

1. Adler, N.E., David, H.P., Major, B.N., Roth, S.H., Russo, N.F., and Wyatt, D.E. (1990). Psychological responses after abortion. Science 248:41-44.

2. David, H.P., Dytrych, Z., Matejcek, Z., and Schuller, V. (1988). Born Unwanted: Developmental Effects of Denied Abortion. New York: Springer-Verlag.

3. Devereux, G. (1955). A Study of Abortion in Primitive Society. New York: Julian Press.

4. Forrest, J.D. And Henshaw, S.K. (1987). The harassment of U.S. abortion providers. Family Planning Perspectives 19:9-13.

5. Ginsburg, F.D. (1989). Contested Lives: The Abortion Debate in an American Community. Berkeley: University of California Press.

6. Grobstein, C. (1988). Science and the Unborn. New York: Basic Books.

7. Kolata, G. (1992). In late abortions, decisions are painful and options few. The New York Times, January 5.

8. Luker, K. (1984). Abortion & the Politics of Motherhood. Berkeley: University of California Press.

9. Tietze, C. (1975). The effect of legalization of abortion on population growth and public health. Family Planning Perspectives 7:123.

Tentative Questionnaire

Personal View

1. What is your gender ( ) male ( ) female

2. What is your age ( ) 18-25 ( ) 25-40 ( ) 40-60 ( ) 60 above

3. What is your political affiliation ( ) Democrat ( ) Republican ( ) Others

4. What is your level of education ( ) High School ( ) College ( ) University ( ) Doctorate

5. What is your income bracket ( ) 10-20, 000 per annum ( ) 20-30, 000 per annum ( ) 30- 40,000 per year ( ) above

Knowledge of Abortion

1. Do you believe that abortion is…… [read more]

Abortion Means the Early Removal Term Paper

Term Paper  |  5 pages (2,169 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


This hard work should be complemented by public policies to decrease the number of unplanned pregnancies. By education and improved access to and use of contraceptives, this can be achieved.

Moral Issues of Abortion

If we concentrate more on the morals of the measures rather than the legitimacy, then America's sour and discordant argument over abortion can become more fruitful. Many pro-abortion advocates have cuddled the idea that it is an ethically unbiased act that should never bring about censure, condemnation or embarrassment in order to safeguard women's abortion rights from legislative or judicial restrictions. There are some arguments that though this method may be diplomatically successful, it is incorrect and doubtfully misleading. Abortion always involves trade-offs and harmonizing, and these involve morals. It is the duty of a moral person to implement legal rights correctly. Implementing this legal right includes the removal of some form of human life. This hurls some considerable influence on one side of the scales. If that side does not come upon lawful counter-weight from the other side, if the morals are trivial, or unimportant, or effortlessly convened with less significant results, then an abortion is still permissible, but may also be immoral.

Personal Observations:

Simply because an act is legally permissible does not imply it is always correct, responsible or moral. Abortion must be secure as a woman's health is at danger, lawful as it is a personal choice, and, of course, atypical, as though it is lawful it is often morally wrong.

End Notes:

Defining abortion. Retrieved from http://www.nrlc.org/abortion/ASMF/asmf3.html Accessed on 10 February 2005

Deflem, Mathieu. 1998. The Boundaries of Abortion Law: Systems Theory from Parsons to Luhmann and Habermas. Social Forces. Vol: 76; No: 3; pp: 775-818. Retrieved from http://www.cas.sc.edu/socy/faculty/deflem/zaborsf.htm Accessed on 10 February 2005

Deflem, Mathieu. 1998. The Boundaries of Abortion Law: Systems Theory from Parsons to Luhmann and Habermas.

Deflem, Mathieu. 1998. The Boundaries of Abortion Law: Systems Theory from Parsons to Luhmann and Habermas.

Ravindran J. Unwanted pregnancy -- medical and ethical dimensions. 2003 March. Med J. Malaysia. Vol: 58; Suppl A: pp: 23-35. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve& db=PubMed& list_uids=14556348& dopt=Abstract Accessed on 10 February 2005

Adolescents Need Safe and Legal Abortion. Retrieved fromhttp://www.crlp.org/pub_fac_atkadol.html Accessed on 10 February 2005

Ravindran J. Unwanted pregnancy -- medical and ethical dimensions. 2003 March. Med J. Malaysia. Vol: 58; Suppl A: pp: 23-35.

Bruce, Deanna; Benatar, Sarah. Policy Update on Safe and Legal Abortion, 30 Years after Roe v. Wade. IWPR Publication #B241. Retrieved from http://www.iwpr.org/pdf/B241.pdf Accessed on 10 February 2005

Bruce, Deanna; Benatar, Sarah. Policy Update on Safe and Legal Abortion, 30 Years after Roe v. Wade. IWPR Publication #B241. Retrieved from http://www.iwpr.org/pdf/B241.pdf Accessed on 10 February 2005

Bruce, Deanna; Benatar, Sarah. Policy Update on Safe and Legal Abortion, 30 Years after Roe v. Wade. IWPR Publication #B241.

The Abortion Dilemma: Legal Isn't Always Ethical. 9 November 2004. Retrieved from http://www.ethicsscoreboard.com/list/abortion2.html Accessed on 10 February 2005


Adolescents Need Safe and Legal Abortion. Retrieved fromhttp://www.crlp.org/pub_fac_atkadol.html Accessed on 10 February 2005

Bruce, Deanna; Benatar,… [read more]

Abortion in This Day Term Paper

Term Paper  |  3 pages (1,091 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


A woman knows that she is pregnant and therefore capable of producing and sustaining life. This is powerful, even for the woman who has not planned the pregnancy. For women who have been impregnated though rape or forcible sexual intercourse, it would likely seem the them that out of a horrible and violent act, something good has happened - the creation of a new life. The woman who feels that abortion is the most acceptable choice, perhaps because she simply wants to be done with the pregnancy and never think about it again, will soon find that this pregnancy and this choice will stay with her for the rest of her life. The woman who has an abortion is always the mother of the terminated fetus. A woman who carries an unplanned pregnancy through to the end and then gives the baby up for adoption knows that the relationship with the child is essentially over once the adoption is complete and may even have a greater sense of closure than does the woman who has abortion. The woman who has an abortion may have physical problems from the medical procedure that will cause problems later on when planned and wanted pregnancies are anticipated, while women who deliver and then give the baby up for adoption are proven in their ability to reproduce. Imagine the guilt for a woman who has an abortion and then cannot naturally conceive or maintain a pregnancy through to term in later years. In addition, the woman who decides to give a baby from an unplanned pregnancy up for adoption is giving the greatest gift of love she possibly can - not only to the baby that she feels she cannot adequately raise or love, but also to the family who seeks a child for adoption. The mother who gives her baby up for adoption knows that her baby is above all a wanted baby by the adopting family. She can know for the rest of her life that she was able to give a special gift to someone that many cannot or will not do. And she can have closure with the baby in that way, knowing that the adoptive families are screened in a way that natural pregnancies can never be, and she can be secure in the fact that she did what was likely the best for herself and for her baby. In conclusion, it would appear that despite all statistics to the contrary, it is most likely easier for any woman in the long run to give an unwanted baby up for adoption rather than abort it.


Zabin, Laurie Schwab, et al. (1989). "When Urban Adolescents Chose Abortion: Effects on Education, Psychological Status, and Subsequent Pregnancy." Family Planning Perspectives, 21(6), 248-255.

Russo, Nancy Felipe & Kristin L. Zierk. (1992). "Abortion, Childbearing, and Women's Well-Being." Professional Psychology: Research and Practice, 23(4), 269-280

Major, Brenda, et al. (2000). "Psychological Responses of Women after First-Trimester Abortion." Archives of General Psychiatry, 57(8), 777-784

Rogers J.… [read more]

Should Abortion Be Made Legal? The Abortion Debate Essay

Essay  |  3 pages (870 words)
Bibliography Sources: 4


Abortion Debate: Should Abortion be Made Legal?

The abortion debate often revolves around the appropriateness of terminating a pregnancy before the normal process of childbirth. As some rule out that it is inappropriate in any possible scenario, others posit that it is only allowed if a mother's life is at risk, while others argue that depending on a given culture, there are a range of circumstances where it is morally acceptable. Unlike actions such as jaywalking, which are considered illegal but not immoral, and wrongs such as adultery that are considered immoral yet not necessarily illegal, Boonin (2003) states that when it comes to abortion the moral obligation is more fundamental. The National Institute of Health, NIH (2015) defines abortion as the deliberate removal of a fetus from the womb of a female through their agency or at their request, which often results in the death of the fetus.

Although there are numerous differing opinions on the legality of abortion, millions of women still go through with the procedure every day. According to Berek (2007), worldwide, approximately 46 million women have abortions and of these, half are illegal and considered unsafe by the World Health Organization (WHO). Moreover, in places where abortion is illegal, complications are a common feature because the women often go to any lengths to have it done; 78,000 women worldwide dying each year in the process. Where it is legal, the procedure is reasonably safe although often condemned by the society. By deciding on whether abortion is legal or illegal, societies have a huge part to play in the wellness of mothers. The main aim of this text is to analyze the dilemma on whether abortion ought to be legalized or not. It looks at the pros and cons of abortion, the legal and ethical implications, as well as the major and minor parties affected.

The dilemma

Berek (2007) states that although societies cannot put a stop abortion, they have a significant role to play in determining whether it will be dangerous or safe, which often depends on whether it is illegal or not. However, abortion becomes a sensitive topic particularly because it involves: the nature of human rights, personal autonomy, and the exercise of state authority over personal choices. For instance, much of the debate about legalizing abortion involves debating whose opinion matters the most when it comes to making the decision. Whereas the mother carries the child and faces all potential health risks involved, some posit that the father also plays a huge part in the conception and should have a say in the…… [read more]

Pros and Cons of Abortion Essay

Essay  |  3 pages (932 words)
Bibliography Sources: 2


¶ … loss of one's life is one of the greatest losses that one can experience, at least according to Marquis (p. 469). The author of this paper will even go one step further and state that the loss of one's life is the greatest loss that one can experience, even if it is willingly given up (as in euthanasia). If that premise holds true, if it can be accepted by society that losing one's life is the greatest loss of them all, then arbitrarily taking one's life without the acknowledged willingness or acquiescence of the victim is morally wrong and cannot be justified under any circumstances. This is especially true with the lives of those who are unable to provide an acknowledgement or acquiescence in any form; verbally, physically, or even with sign language. Those victims, of course, are primarily still-in-the-womb fetuses.

Marquis expounds upon the assumption that most philosophers who happen to be affiliated with institutions of higher education on a secular basis seems to find that the anti-abortion position is either an irrational religious dogma or a conclusion generated by a seriously flawed argument (p. 468). While Marquis does not address specific arguments for the permissibility of abortion, he does seek to render impotent those philosophers by establishing an argument that is neither flawed nor philosophically untenable. This author agrees with the argument that Marquis presents in that abortion is always an immoral act and therefore should not be permissible in any circumstances. This author sees abortion as the greatest tragedy of the 21st century, and argues (along with Marquis) that denying a person's right to life at any stage of that life is the greatest loss that the individual can face, and that in order to be justified in taking that life, the individual must give permission or acknowledgement.

Thomson, on the other hand, argues that in some certain cases abortion is not immoral and should be permissible. Thomson (p. 445) states that unless the father or mother assumes the responsibility for the fetus, after the baby is born, then they do not have responsibility for it. What a specious argument that is. To clarify, Thomson states that if the parents take every precaution to keep from getting pregnant, and do so anyway, they do not any responsibility for that fetus until they have taken it home from the hospital and assumed that responsibility. That is an argument that cannot be made without serious contradiction, and here's the reason why; if the couple had taken "every" precaution then that baby would not have been created in the first place. Every precaution has to include abstinence from the act of creating the baby and that means no sexual intercourse. Just by engaging in the act of sexual intercourse with each other provides reason…… [read more]

Federal Law Abortion Term Paper

Term Paper  |  3 pages (777 words)
Bibliography Sources: 3


Religious Aspects

The freedom of religion is a guaranteed right in the U.S. Constitution and should be protected fervently and constantly. The abortion issue is deeply religious for many of those who believe that life is something spiritual and important. Groups of people can demand that this practice of killing fetuses is immoral and intolerable on religious grounds within reason. The federal government has not right to stop these sects of people who hold such beleifes and desire to make a community for themselves. Religion and politics is a tricky minefield and should not be held as a distraction to other more pressing issues for the federal government. Norrander & Wilcox (1999) agreed when they wrote " because several religious groups (most notably evangelical Protestants and Catholics) condemn abortion, many legislators have strong personal views on the issue that may conflict with those of their constituents. Indeed, political elites are far more divided on abortion than the mass public and take more extreme positions, " (p.709).

The Moral Argument

Life is the most mysterious idea conceivable. To eradicate life without due process suggests that life is inherently evil and that there is no room to improve, grow and evolve. The act of abortion suggests much about the society it is practiced in and there is no question that the devaluation of life is an inescapable product of such pro-abortion philosophy. Motherhood is not something to be disregarded as unimportant or unnecessary and to diminish the importance of it also suggests a diminishing of women and their natural role in society. Embracing life and the mystery behind its conception should be treated with high reverence and equal respect. The federal government has no right to regulate morals one way or the other and is best left out of this contentious debate.


Boonstra, H.D. (2007). The heart of the matter: public funding of abortion for poor women in the United States. Guttmacher Policy Review, 10(1), 12-16.

Forsythe, C.D., & Presser, S.B. (2005). Restoring Self-Government on Abortion: A Federalism Amendment. Tex. Rev. L. & Pol., 10, 301.

Norrander, B., & Wilcox, C. (1999). Public Opinion and Policymaking in the States: The Case of…… [read more]

Teenage Abortion Case Study

Case Study  |  5 pages (1,746 words)
Bibliography Sources: 5


Teen abortion issues are very difficult to address, because of the difficulties that are seen on both sides of the dilemma. For those who are under the age of 18, there are considerations regarding their right to privacy vs. their parents' right to have information on them in order to raise them properly and keep them safe from harm (Schools,… [read more]

Ethical Issue in the Medical Term Paper

Term Paper  |  3 pages (1,098 words)
Bibliography Sources: 5


Supporters additionally claim that pro-abortionists consider humans simply as being a simple tactic to achieve a purpose as abortion may be viewed as a removing of the unborn infant wherein the pregnant female will no longer have any consideration. A lot of people feel concerned that the accessibility to abortion on justification of baby abnormality promotes bias in the direction of any individual having a handicap as well as insidiously yields the perception that the only useful individuals are people who comply with some ill-defined label associated with "normality" (BMA, 2007a).

Some individuals, who battle abortion generally, acknowledge that it might be sensible in extremely unique situations like where it is actually the outcome of sexual assault or the result of exploitation of a young child or perhaps an emotionally incompetent female. Danger towards the mother's existence might be an additional justifiable exclusion only where abortion may be the only choice. It could therefore not be viewed as justifiable to kill an unborn infant when the life of each unborn infant as well as mother might be preserved by another solution (BMA, 2007a).

Arguments utilized to reinforce abortion in a few situations

Numerous individuals debate that abortion might be validated within specific situations than those acknowledged by anti-abortionists however that it could be unfavorable to permit abortion at will. To achieve this may incur unfavorable results, like motivating irresponsible thought patterns to birth control. It might additionally result in a wear and tear involving the lives of practical fetuses as well as trivialize the possible mental issues of abortion on females and also on health experts (BMA, 2007).

These kinds of argument tend to be based upon the idea that the embryo starts devoid of legal rights, even though possessing a unique position from conceiving because of its likelihood of growth, as well as that it receives rights and standing all through its growth. The idea of creating unborn baby legal rights and practical elements, like the feasible stress towards the pregnant female, nurse practitioners, physicians or any other children within the household, may point to the viewpoint that premature abortion is much more appropriate than a late one (BMA, 2007).

Some individuals reinforce this position on practical grounds, assuming that abortions may usually be desired by females who happen to be needy and that it really is much better for modern society to offer abortion solutions that are secure and that might be supervised and controlled, as opposed to permit "back-street" activities (BMA, 2007).


British Medical Association (2005). Abortion time limits: a briefing paper from the British Medical Association. London: BMA. Available at www.bma.org.uk/ap.nsf/Content/AbortionTimeLimits.

British Medical Association (2007). The Mental capacity Act 2005 -- guidance for health professionals. London: BMA, Available at www.bma.org.uk/ethics

British Medical Association (2007a). Medical treatment for adults with incapacity: guidance on ethical and medico-legal issues in Scotland. London: BMA. Available at www.bma.org.uk/ethics

British Medical Association. (2007b). The law and ethics of abortion. London: BMA,.

Department of Health. (2004). Best practice guidance for doctors and… [read more]

U.S. Federal Policy on Abortion United States Essay

Essay  |  2 pages (661 words)
Bibliography Sources: 3


U.S. federal policy on abortion

United States Federal Policy on Abortion

In understanding the workings of the United States federal government, it is critical to have an understanding of the policies that is being implemented at the federal, state, and local levels. Federalism and principles of equality and democracy would be best 'tested' by studying how policies approved and implemented are aligned to the U.S. Constitution. Interestingly, one of the best gauges of a policy's alignment to the vision of the U.S. Constitution is through the Tenth Amendment or Amendment X of the U.S. Constitution, which states that "[t]he powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people."

The Tenth Amendment is significant to the discussion of the federal government's policy on healthcare, specifically abortion. Looking at the history of federal, state, and local policies on abortion, it can be said that historically, government policies on abortion have not been favorable to women who needed to undergo abortion as a preventive service. Five years ago, at the federal policy level, abortion is banned and even "criminalizes" it for women in their second trimester of pregnancy (Planned Parenthood, 2012). This policy, upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court, reflects a direct discord to the Tenth Amendment, and puts the framework and principle of federalism and human rights into question. Putting a ban and even criminalizing commitment and engagement of abortion services, despite it being a preventive and healthcare service to women, denies women of their basic human right to decide for their own welfare, in terms of health and life choices and options. At the state level, during the same period (five years ago), while abortion services are not banned and engagement in it during the second trimester of pregnancy is not considered a criminal act, the non-existent or very weak support from politicians and legislators demonstrate how federal policy is inevitably linked with…… [read more]

Health Effects of Abortion Scholarly Evidence Regarding Post Abortion Syndrome Annotated Bibliography

Annotated Bibliography  |  7 pages (1,817 words)
Bibliography Sources: 0


¶ … Post Abortion Syndrome." Specifically, the physical and mental side effects that post abortion syndrome causes and any evidence to support a connection between those symptoms and the abortion.

A, Rankin. "Post Abortion Syndrome." Health Matrix. Volume 7.2 (1989): 45-7.

This article, published in the Health Matrix, is the personal story of a woman who experienced post abortion syndrome.… [read more]

Against Abortion Term Paper

Term Paper  |  3 pages (977 words)
Bibliography Sources: 3


Finally, besides the scientific evidence supporting that human life begins at conception, and that human life has an almost limitless potential for future value, there is always the "Golden Rule" which dominates Western ethics. The "Golden Rule" states that a person should to onto others only that which they would have done to them. In the case of abortion, each person must consider the "Golden Rule" and apply it to themselves. They must ask themselves if they would be alright if their own mother had made the decision to abort them. "If you kill the unborn, and yet don't consent to the idea of your mother having done the same thing to you in the same situation, then you violate the golden rule and are inconsistent." (Gensler, 2011, p. 170) In the great debate that has raged in the United States over the issue of abortion, I would have to take my place on the "Pro-Life" side and proclaim my opposition to abortion.

Part Two:

When the subject of abortion came up as a topic for an essay, I immediately had a knee-jerk reaction and felt that I wanted to support it. Like many supporters of abortion, I only saw the issue from the point-of-view of the rights of the mother and did not view the embryo, and later fetus, as a distinct human being. And discussing the issue with my group only supported my original thoughts on the subject. However, after researching the issue, and making certain to research both sides, I discovered that I was woefully undereducated about the facts surrounding abortion; I had simply believed what society generally parroted as the "party line" about abortion. But searching the Internet for scientific and academic papers and books on the subject of abortion, and particularly reasons against abortion, I discovered a variety of sources from reputable institutions that allowed me to gain an unbiased look at the issue. For the first time I discovered that science backed the idea that human life began at conception, and that embryos were distinct human life forms. And from this I discovered that there were ethical foundations to the idea that if embryos were human beings, then they should be treated the same as any other human beings, the "Golden Rule" of treating others as you want to be treated should apply. I performed a complete 180 from when I first was given the assignment and discussed the issue of abortion with my group. I have evolved my thinking from blind obedience to ideology to the understanding of science and ethics and now disagree with most of my group and oppose abortion.


Gensler, Harry. (2011). Ethics: A Contemporary Introduction. New York: Routledge.

Lee, Patrick, and Robert P. George.(2005). The Wrong of Abortion. In Cohen, Andrew

and Christopher Wellman. (Eds.), Contemporary Debates in Applied Ethics.

Malden, MA: Blackwell.

Savulescu, J. (2002). "Abortion, Embryo Destruction, and the…… [read more]

Abortion, Anne Sexton Repeats the Line Reaction Paper

Reaction Paper  |  2 pages (658 words)
Bibliography Sources: 0


¶ … Abortion," Anne Sexton repeats the line, "Somebody who should have been born / is gone." The narrator treats abortion as "loss without death," indicating that an abortion falls into a moral grey area. In fact, the color gray is an important symbol in "The Abortion," such as in the "gray washboard" of the "sunken" roads. Later the road is also described as a "sheet of tin." The narrator's mood is also gray, tainted with loss and death. As Robert Frost pointed out, poetry is "a way of remembering what it would impoverish us to forget." The narrator of "The Abortion" remembers the emotional anguish of her act, and thus gives life to that which was never born. In the poem, Sexton seems to suggest that an abortion might seem like a trivial act as easy as changing one's shoes; but in reality women must face the fact that the abortion is a type of death.

The narrator is obviously bitter about her experience with the abortion, and is emotionally conflicted. The poem is filled with an angry tone as well as sorrow. She calls herself, or her partner, or women in general "cowards," without actually spelling out who she means. The coward could refer to a man who did not want to take responsibility for the baby, or it could refer to the speaker's own inability to be responsible for the baby. It is entirely likely that the narrator advises her fellow females to think critically about abortions. The "logic" of simply doing away with a pregnancy might seem like "loss without death." That "loss without death" might be a cowardly way of rationalizing an immoral act.

Interestingly, the narrator does not seem to want to take full responsibility for the act. In the seventh stanza of the poem, the narrator mentions the man who impregnated her in a passive way. She simply states, "up in Pennsylvania, I met a little man, / not Rumpelstiltskin, at all,…… [read more]

Abortion Being an Option Essay

Essay  |  3 pages (910 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1


The author of this report would be content to see just actual abortions being outlawed except in the case of incest, rape and health of the mother being in peril.

The people that would argue with this line of thought, and there are many, will say that this will lead to back alley abortions and other illicit behavior. That is a straw man argument and does not hold water. One could make that argument for children smoking, anyone using drugs or illegal activity in general. Justify it however one wishes, but sanctioning illegal or immoral behavior does not make it right and just because it will happen behind closed doors if it's banned does not mean it should be legal. Just as with completely preventable conditions like obesity and type II diabetes, it's all about education and making it clear that there is no second chance beyond a certain point. Abortion being legal on demand is subsidizing and sanctioning idiotic and careless behavior in a lot of people. People that know full well (in theory, anyway) are still having unprotected sex and are spreading STD's and children as a result and they are often ambivalent about their stupidity even after the fact. Using an immoral thing like abortion to give people a way out of a result that was entirely preventable is just silly and it has predictable results.


Again, the author would state that abortion is a legitimate medical procedure and it has a time and place. However, allowing people to get it on demand with no questions ask is exceedingly damaging to the norms and expectations of society and a lot of the proponents of abortion use demagoguery about religion and other beliefs to cloud the issue. However, religion and ideology need not be involved to justify why abortion should not be happening, at least not at the level that it does. A woman going through an abortion goes through a literal living hell a lot of the time and it's not just because a bible-thumping church-goer would condemn her. To suggest a growing fetus is just a mass of tissue and is not worth of protection and respect just makes no sense. The author of this response would simply ask one question, that being why killing a pregnant mother is double-murder but that same mother aborting the fetus is completely legal. Either that fetus is a life or it is not…one cannot have it both ways.

Works Cited

Matarese, Jennifer. "41% of New York City pregnancies end in abortion | 7online.com." ABC Owned Television Stations. N.p., 9 Jan. 2011. Web. 29 May 2013. .… [read more]

Illegalization of Abortion Essay

Essay  |  7 pages (2,047 words)
Bibliography Sources: 7


Illegalizaton of Abortion

Illegalization of abortion facilitates goals of democracy

Democracy refers to a form of government whereby the society is characterized by equality in privileges and rights. In a democratic state, the supreme power is vested in the people and it's exercised by elected members under the free electoral system or directly exercised by the people. A democratic government… [read more]

What Is Abortion and Is it Morally Permissible? Essay

Essay  |  5 pages (1,760 words)
Bibliography Sources: 7


¶ … Zygote to Embryo to Fetus to Infant: The Moral Debate about Abortion

Although the debate over abortion tends to become emotionally charged, there are some fundamental issues involved that can be examined from a strictly pragmatic perspective to help determine if abortion is ever morally permissible. These issues include most especially the precise point at which a fertilized… [read more]

Birth Cintrol and Self-Induced Abortions Essay

Essay  |  4 pages (1,430 words)
Bibliography Sources: 3


Therefore, customarily, Roman women turned to various mixtures and potions to self-induce abortions. For a moment, a plant known as Silphium was desired (Riddle, 1992, pg. 13-17). When swallowed, this plant was established to cause a self-induced abortion. In the end though, Roman women discontinued using Silphium. For the basis that it went inexistent. It is clear that many women… [read more]

Abortion and the Significance Research Paper

Research Paper  |  5 pages (1,450 words)
Bibliography Sources: 5


2007). Again, the strength of the study is apparent in its ability to access complete medical information. The study also performed a population study which allowed them to survey all abortion treatments in the country, versus other studies that have suggested a risk between medical abortion and ectopic pregnancy using population-based case patients and controls (Virk et al. 2007).

The… [read more]

Abortion: Two Opposing Sides Application Essay

Application Essay  |  2 pages (546 words)
Bibliography Sources: 2


However, the emotional difficulties caused by forcing a woman to have a child could be seen as thwarting goodness. Enabling a woman to live her life as she chooses is the ultimate good, it could be argued, in support of abortion.

4. Justice: Two types of justice exist in bioethics: comparative and distributive justice. "Comparative justice involves balancing the competing claims of people for the same health care resources" ("Bioethical principles," The Nathaniel Center, 2011). In an abortion, this can occur when there is a conflict between the child's mother, who desires an abortion and to move on with her life, and the child's father, who does not want the abortion. The mother sees her claim as superior because she has to bear the burden of pregnancy and mothers traditionally have more responsibilities for child-rearing. The father sees his claim upon the potential child as equal.

"Distributive justice, on the other hand, determines the distribution of health care resources by a standard that is independent of the claims of particular people. For this reason it may also be called 'noncomparative' justice. Distribution is determined according to principles rather than individual or group need" ("Bioethical principles," The Nathaniel Center, 2011). Distributive justice would suggest that upholding the principles of choice over one's body is the highest value, regardless of the individual circumstances of the parents -- or that the principle of life is the most valuable principle, regardless of the desires of the parents.

Works Cited

"Bioethical principles." The Nathaniel Center. [June 14, 2011]

http://www.nathaniel.org.nz/?sid=27… [read more]

Rethinking Roe v. Wade Research Paper

Research Paper  |  5 pages (1,749 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


Wade was not only morally unjustified, but it was legally incorrect. The decision relied heavily on faulty reasoning about the history of abortion and its cultural acceptance. The court also overextended its reach by extending a "right to privacy" where there once was none. In failing to take into account even the idea of life beginning at conception, the court did not take seriously the Christian culture of the United States. By expanding the powers of the court, the decision in Roe v. Wade may have even violated the United States constitution. But most importantly, abortion is the taking of human life, which violates the highest law of all. For all of these reasons, the Roe v. Wade decision was legally and morally wrong.

Works Cited

Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113, (1973) (republished by J.M.J. Seton Home Study School, July 23, 2007)

Rice, Charles. "The Human Life Amendment." http://www.all.org/article.php?id=10065. 2005. (Accessed November 30, 2010).

Morriss, Frank. "Court Rulings Cannot Negate the Law of God." http://www.catholicculture.org/culture/library/view.cfm?id=3122 (accessed November 30, 2010).

Titus, Herbert W.. "Ending Legal Abortion," http://www.conservativeusa.org/titus100.htm. 1997. (Accessed November 30, 2010).

Clifford Stevens. "The Rights of the Unborn: From Common Law to Constitutional Law." http://www.priestsforlife.org/government/stevens3.htm. (Accessed November 30, 2010).

American Life League. "A History of Abortion in the United States," October 5, 2005. http://www.all.org/article.php?id=10121. (Accessed 30 November 2010)… [read more]

Wrongful Life Damages Article Critique

Article Critique  |  7 pages (2,168 words)
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Wrongful Life

Damages for Wrongful Life in Australia

The issue of abortion is inherently loaded with practical, legal, ethical and ideological debates. These debates touch on all manner of question relating to the appropriateness, permissibility and moral acceptance of performing an abortion or undergoing an abortion. One such question relates to the health of the fetus and denotes, for many… [read more]

Should Abortion Be Legal Term Paper

Term Paper  |  8 pages (2,850 words)
Bibliography Sources: 8


¶ … Abortion be Legal

Even in today's world, considered to be both morally and technologically advanced, abortion remains an issue of intense controversy. Those who are against it use reasons such as the rights of the unborn child and even the mental health of the mother in order to promote their points. Interestingly, human rights and mental health are… [read more]

Abortion and Reproductive Rights Essay

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¶ … Abortion and Reproductive Rights

Abortion is one of the most divisive and controversial political and social issues in the United States. For many decades, elective abortion was prohibited in most American states. As a result, most women who wished to terminate an unwanted pregnancy typically had only two choices: to travel to remote states for a legal medical procedure or to obtain an illegal abortion performed (usually) by non-physicians under unsafe conditions.

Wealthier women were more likely to have family support and resources, including the money to travel if necessary and the professional connections and the social relationships necessary to obtain a formal medical certification of "necessity" required under state statutes to satisfy the legal criteria for medically necessary abortion procedures (Mappes & Zembaty, 2008). Conversely, poor women could not readily travel to distant states or obtain formal authorization from family physicians; they either endured "back-alley" abortions or they gave birth to infants whether they could afford to feed and care for them properly or not. To a certain extent, their plight in this regard was responsible for perpetuating poverty and social reliance of many minority individuals and families, particularly in the southern states (Mappes & Zembaty, 2008).

In 1970, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a landmark ruling in Roe v. Wade, deciding that states could no longer prohibit elective abortions in the first trimester of pregnancy (Mappes & Zembaty, 2008). That decision still permitted states to regulate specific medical aspects of elective abortion during the second trimester and it allowed state prohibition of elective abortion during the third trimester except for cases of medical necessity (Mappes & Zembaty, 2008). Since then, a strong opposition lobby has continually worked to undermine the Roe decision politically, supporting various laws attempting to limit the dispensation of informational literature or require mandatory waiting periods and parental notification by law. Anti-abortion groups routinely disrupt business operations at medical facilities by picketing immediately in front of their property and exploiting their First Amendment right to free speech to harass and shame patients exercising their constitutional rights to obtain elective abortions if they so choose (Mappes & Zembaty, 2008).

Legal Issues:

In theory, the legal basis of the opposition to abortion is that the unborn fetus is a person within the meaning of the U.S. Constitution and therefore, entitled to the full protection of law as any other person. More particularly, the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution guarantees the equal protection of every person, and the Due Process Clause of the Fifth and Fourteenth amendments require the due process of law in order to deprive any person of "life and liberty" (Mappes & Zembaty, 2008).

The principal legal argument against abortion is simply that the unborn fetus is entitled to life and liberty and that it is equally criminal to harm or kill a person who is still unborn and to harm or kill a person in general. To a certain extent, that rationale makes perfect sense, particularly in… [read more]

Moral Dilemma of Abortion General Moral Principles Essay

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¶ … Moral Dilemma of Abortion

General Moral Principles:

In general, moral principles arise in human life because the behavioral choices and actions of individuals can affect others. Religious beliefs also suggest that morality in human life also encompasses strictly private conduct and a supposed relationship between men and their gods, but by definition, those issues lie wholly outside the… [read more]

Healthcare Discussion Response: Embryonic Stem Cell Research Term Paper

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Discussion Response: Embryonic Stem Cell Research

Given that abortion and fertility treatments that result in the nonuse of some embryos is legal in our nation, to prohibit putting the embryos discarded in such technology to good use, in a way that can save human lives not only seems absurd, but contradictory. I do not really believe that it is an ethical debate, but that the issue has become symbolically significant on a political level for some elements of the religious right. Opposing stem cell research has become a kind of litmus test for right-wing politicians, regardless of whether they -- or their conservative constituents -- understand the full implications of the technology. The main issues that embryonic stem cell research raise, and the prohibitions surrounding it, are the questions of the difficulties in having non-scientists consider legislation about issues surrounding technology that they often do not understand.

When viewing the potential gains from the technology, and the moral cost of denying people suffering from terrible, debilitating illnesses the full power of medical research because of the religiously-based objections of people who hold a very narrow definition of when life begins (but show little concern about people living with…… [read more]

Ethics - Abortion vs. Adoption Term Paper

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Ethics - Abortion vs. Adoption


Unwanted pregnancy presents an ethical dilemma, one that raises issues about the morality of abortion, the logical criteria for defining the source and nature of obligations and the respective rights of the woman and the fetus. It also raises issues of religion and fundamental beliefs about when life begins. More specifically, it requires us to consider when mere cellular "life" becomes a human being entitled to human rights and full protections of law. One alternative to terminating a pregnancy through medically- induced abortion is to carry the fetus to full term and place the newborn baby for adoption immediately after birth. In an objective sense, the most crucial factor that would make adoption a morally preferable choice to abortion is the age of the fetus at the time of consideration. In that regard, terminating a pregnancy at one week may present no moral dilemma, whereas terminating a pregnancy in the ninth month is tantamount to the murder of a human being.

Those who subscribe to religious beliefs that equate the life of a fertilized zygote a few hours after conception with the life of a fully developed person consider abortion just as morally impermissible as any other type of murder. But because those beliefs derive from religious doctrine rather than any objective criteria, they are irrelevant to a discussion about morality unless all participants share the same religious view (Dershowitz 2002). As many philosophers and ethicists point out (Abrams & Buckner 1990), the objective moral criteria that determine whether adoption is preferable to abortion do not relate to when "life" begins, but when characteristics of humanness begin. Without a preconceived religious decree that life one day after conception is equally valuable to life one day before natural birth, the questions should be: (1) what anatomical characteristics or attributes make a fetus a person? And even more…… [read more]

Utilitarianism and Abortion Term Paper

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Philosophy - Utilitarianism & Abortion


Utilitarianism is often criticized as a moral theory because rights are conditional, i.e., they are respected only as long as doing so does not conflict with "the greatest good for the greatest number." Just for this reason, many expect utilitarians to be relatively permissive about access to abortion. Do you agree? Justify your answer by drawing on the views of Callahan, Sumner, and Wertheimer. Yes. From the utilitarian perspective, what matters most is the outcome of moral choices. In general, even if the particular act under consideration violates some objective right or moral principle, that act is justified nevertheless, if its outcome is beneficial to more people than it is harmful.

Wertheimer points out that abortion is neither factually right nor wrong in and of itself, but only takes on moral significance by virtue of how one responds to the problem.

Similarly, Sumner suggests that the moral problem of abortion is as much a matter of social policy and politics as it is a matter of personal considerations. In his view, abortion must be viewed in relation to the social implications of the relative cost to society and to other individuals in addition to consideration from the perspective of the woman or the fetus. Callahan also emphasizes that the moral implications of abortion must incorporate consideration for the individual rights and best interests of the woman.

According to Callahan, the position of the Catholic Church ignores those issues and conceives of the moral issues as limited to the well-being of the fetus. Furthermore, the Catholic position is not predicated on the rights of the fetus either, but on the supposed sanctity of its life as an incarnation of God the Creator. In this respect,

Callahan strongly favors a utilitarian analysis that would evaluate the morality of abortion on the circumstances of the pregnancy, the well-being of the mother, and the ratio of benefit to harm caused to others instead of being dictated by an a priori rule against all forms and justifications for abortion on principle. In general, a utilitarian analysis would consider the interests of everyone affected by the prospective abortion, including the mother, the family, and society as a whole, in addition to the affect of the decision on the fetus. From the utilitarian perspective, a newly fertilized human ovum (or zygote) would probably not be entitled to any consideration before developing sufficiently to be capable of experiencing discomfort, pain, and, more generally, sentience.

Prior to this stage, the utilitarian position on abortion would likely be that one has no greater moral duty to preserve a newly fertilized zygote than one has any moral duty to create a pregnancy in the first place. By contrast, the Catholic Church (among others) views the moral obligation to any fertilized human embryo as inherent as of the moment of conception, rather than as a function of any comparison of relative rights, harms, or benefits. Likewise, this religious point-of-view conflicts… [read more]

Church and State Weigh in on Abortion Term Paper

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¶ … Church and State Weigh in on Abortion

On April 18, 2007, the Supreme Court handed down its decision on Gonzales v Carhart, et al. (Legal Information Institute, 2007). The decision, important to pro-life advocates, has been published in its entirety on the internet. In a nutshell - and "nutshell" is where much of the abortion debate belongs -… [read more]

Abortion Deconstructing Thomson's Violinist Model Term Paper

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Bibliography Sources: 2



Deconstructing Thomson's violinist model as a defense for abortion

One of the great ongoing debates in American society involves when, if ever, abortion is permissible. A common argument made in favor of abortion has been that a woman has the right to determine what happens with her body. If she does want to undergo the ordeal of a pregnancy, she should be able to terminate it. Judith Jarvis Thomson has attempted to add weight to this claim by proposing a hypothetical situation where a woman is essentially tethered to a famous violinist, who lives off the woman's organs. Thomson's scenario, upon closer inspection, is a poor analogy to the abortion debate and is easily dismissed. Thomson ignores more solid defenses of abortion to present this analogy that is, at times, bewildering.

Thomson's hypothetical case involving a violinist bears only marginal applicability to the abortion debate. In essence, Thomson envisions a case where a person wakes up connected to an ill but famous violinist - who the person who has never met. The violinist, who has a right to live, needs to siphon off the healthy person's organs for nine months, regardless of that person's consent. We can all agree that such a case would be an injustice, but we should also agree that Thomson's hypothetical fails to capture the essence of the abortion debate - or pregnancy for that matter.

The first problem with Thomson's argument is that it invokes a sense of social position that is, at best, barely applicable to the abortion debate. When a reader considers Thomson's hypothetical, that reader is supposed to feel a bit of outrage that this violinist is permitted to leach off another person's organs simply because he is famous and talented and there is a strong interest in keeping him alive (Thomson, 1971). That sense of social inequality is not prevalent in the abortion debate. One would be hard-pressed to find anyone arguing that abortions should not occur because the fetuses are in a socially superior position to the mothers. At most, we hear the argument that the unborn baby, as a human, deserves at least as many rights as the mother. But the idea that the unborn baby's life is superior to that of the mother's, as in the case of the violinist, is not a core argument.

Second, Thomson has seemingly forgotten how pregnancies occur. In her example, the person wakes up chained to an adult violinist to whom the person has neither a connection nor a moral obligation. By and large, this is not how pregnancies occur. Women do not just wake up one day with a fetus living off of them, with no idea how that fetus was created. Pregnancies occur because adults take actions that create a fetus. This unborn baby is not some stranger leaching off an adult who should bear no moral responsibility. The unborn baby was created by the adult, through the adult's actions, and, as a result, there is a very real… [read more]

Different Side of Views Term Paper

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Abortion Debate

While legal aspect of abortion has been the subject of extensive debate during the last 35 years, abortion itself has been around for thousands of years. The religious and social moral codes have played a major role in both preventing and encouraging abortion. The religious beliefs have generally been interpreted as against abortion while the behavior and circumstances have often necessitated abortion of unwanted pregnancies.

The truth is that abortion has always been available to those who seek it. Hundreds of thousands of women undergoing abortion die throughout the world each year. 'The illegality of abortion in some countries forces these women to back street clinics and in the hands of illiterate and untrained midwives.

The arguments for and against abortion favor a careful approach where abortion is kept legal within a specified term of pregnancy and women are educated to seek help as early as possible in the course of pregnancy.

Banning abortion under 'any circumstances' will only bring unwanted and unloved children into the world bringing misery to the parents, burden on the state and a phenomenal increase in maladjusted children who live on the streets, and turn to crime and drugs and affect the society.

Introduction survey of attitude about abortion in the UK and USA showed that 41% of the young girls surveyed, supported unconditional access to abortion (Smartgirl, 2002). Another 33.5% girls favored abortion provided certain conditions regarding term of pregnancy and health or circumstances of the pregnant woman justified abortion. 85% of the girls favoring unconditional access to abortion thought that it was 'a woman's right to choose issue'. Reading a quote about abortion and woman's right to choose by Esther Langston, a professor at the University of Nevada made me think about the validity of this right. Esther Langston said:

QUOTE] "What we are saying is that abortion becomes one of the choices and the person has the right to choose whatever it is that is...best for them in the situation in which they find themselves, be it abortion, to keep the baby, to adopt it, to sell it, to leave it in a dumpster, to put it on your porch, whatever; it's the person's right to choose."(In Hanegraff, 1997) [UNQUOTE]

Should a person really have an absolute right over another being? Can we allow an unborn child to be aborted a few days before it is delivered? What about fetus that is known to have defects of life and limbs such as Thalidomide children? Is it ethically acceptable to permit abortion in such cases? The religious arguments affect human psychology, after listening to the arguments regarding 'sanctity of life' abortion due to necessity at a particular time can have psychological effects later. Abortion is indeed a complex issue justifying exploration for this important ethical question.


In most of our discussions regarding the abortion debate, our focus is normally on the society we live in. For most of Europe and North America, the society has grown… [read more]

Abortion Term Paper

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Bibliography Sources: 1+


Labeling theory however helps to explain why abortion is termed a deviant behavior. Labeling theory divides people into two distinct groups namely conformist and defiant. The former group has a set of labels that it uses to categorize the behavior of so-called non-conformists or defiant group. When a person decides to abort the fetus, the conformist group sees her behavior… [read more]

Political Policy of Interest Term Paper

Term Paper  |  2 pages (586 words)
Bibliography Sources: 2


There appears to be a fervent atmosphere around this discussion and emotions tend to get in the way from real and meaningful intellectual discussion that could lead to reasonable consensus that would move the country forward on this issue. Abortion is also commonly referred to as a woman's issues and being a woman myself makes me feel more tied to this issue than if I were a man.

I disagree with Ms. Pelosi and her support of the abortion rights of women. As a mother, I have trouble emotionally dealing with the fact that some mothers would want to kill their potential baby. Life deserves more respect than what Ms. Pelosi is affording in her argument. The court's assumption of when life begins is short sighted and weak. Advances in technology allow test tube babies to survive and many women surrogate for other incapable women all of time. For this reason, the fetus should be gaining more rights as its chances for survival, outside the mother's realm of influence is much greater in today's world.

Abortion is the epitome of laziness. Learning to be responsible is an inescapable condition of human life and delaying it by wasting potential life is reckless and mean spirited. A constant barrage of information claiming the natural resources of the world are threatened and dwindling does not help my position, but breaking free of that idea would surely affect many people's opinion on killing unborn babies.


Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi Webpage (2011). " Pelosi Statement on 38th Anniversary of Roe v Wade. " 21 Jan 2011. Retrieved from http://pelosi.house.gov/news/press- releases/2011/01/pelosi-statement-on-the-38th-anniversary-of-roe-v-wade.shtml

"Roe v. Wade Case Brief Summary." Lawnix. Viewed 21 April 2013. Retrieved from http://www.lawnix.com/cases/roe-wade.html… [read more]

Abortion Research Paper

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Twenty states make it mandatory to have the provision of ultrasound by abortion agencies. Seven states make it compulsory that the abortion service centers should conduct ultrasound prior to undergoing abortion and also necessitate the provider to accord scope to the client to view the image. Eleven states also necessitate that a woman should be accorded with the scope to watch an ultrasound image if the service providers conduct the procedure as portion of the preparation for an abortion. Five states necessitate that a women be given with the opportunity to watch the image of ultrasound. (Guttmacher Institute, 2012)

This legal framework necessitate that women thinking of termination of pregnancy must attain an outward ultrasound of the fetus prior to according the consent for the procedure. They are also advised after the ultrasound to wait for 24 hours for the abortion to be permitted. The prime idea behind these legal provisions is to dissuade women from undergoing abortions. Compelling a pregnant woman to face her fetus, the legislators try to bring out an emotional response that makes the woman dissuade her mind about abortion. Irrespective of the contention that abortion is unethical or unacceptable one definitely do not think that law is required to be a tool in compelling emotional reactions. Women have the right to be aware of all the implications that might come from such a procedure. They, however, do not be compelled to undergo a system that conducts neither performance. (Fox, 2012)

An ultrasound neither informs legally nor medically -- irrespective of that, it notifies them aesthetically. Women are compelled to view at an image of a fetus; however, the woman who desire to abort already has prior knowledge of the ultrasound image of fetus. Additionally, there is the concern for ultrasound prices. As per the law the patient is expected to take the burden of the compelling procedure. The law entails a fine of $2,500 for not complying with the legal necessities. Such incorporation of ultrasound is visualized as a method to financially dissuade women for resorting to a legal medical procedure. Irrespective of the ethical issues of the abortion the government is not expected to emphasize moral issues on its citizen legally. This law on this ground is regarded as appalling & the offensive government encroachment that is framed to embarrass women desiring to avail legal healthcare. (Fox, 2012)

Such laws pertaining to necessities of ultrasound for abortion is lacking in significant arenas and is not the most successful methods to insure that an abortion thinking mother gets advantages from the powerful influence of ultrasound. Particularly, all of these laws need that some ultrasound information be accorded to the woman from the doctor who is attending the woman. The attending doctor definitely desires that the women must select the option for abortion since the doctor will be paid for abortion. It is pertinent that any need that this person offer ultrasound information would be distorted and skewed by the attending doctor to persuade the mother… [read more]

Personhood Amendment in Mississippi Judith Term Paper

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Thomson says it would be absurd to argue that every acorn is an oak tree with the same properties. Although it is difficult to draw a line in the sand when life begins, that does not mean we have to go to the moment of conception for fear of drawing the line too soon, and depriving women of their rights. Thomson says that one cannot argue that an acorn is a tree, and that all forms of potential life are persons.

The second argument is that the fetus' right to life outweighs the women's right to her own autonomy. This is also problematic -- who is to judge the suffering a woman bears while pregnant? Would this argument be equally valid if a woman was pregnant for three or ten years? Thomson uses an example of someone being compelled to give up their mobility, against their will, to preserve the life of another human being. We would regard this as immoral (for example, even if someone is a match as a potential organ donor, they cannot be compelled to risk their life under the knife and donate their kidney according to the law). Thomson argues that her analogy is relevant to the abortion because even if a fetus is a human person, a woman should not be compelled to preserve that life. The right to life does not include the right to someone else's body against her will.

Thus Thompson would not support the Mississippi amendment, not because it draws the line of when human life begins too early, but because it is never moral to compel a woman to carry a pregnancy to term to save the life of another potential or living human being (embryo or fetus). The proposed personhood law took Thomson's portrait of the 'logical,' absurd extremity of the pro-life notion of personhood and codified it in the law. Thomson's argument, in contrast, is still philosophically sound, even though it was written in the early 1970s: it upholds the sacredness of the woman's body, and a woman's unalienable right to decide how that body is used.


Eckholm, Eric. "Push for 'personhood' amendment." The New York Times. October 26, 2011.

[2 Dec 2011].

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/26/us/politics/personhood-amendments-would-ban-nearly-all-abortions.html?_r=1… [read more]

Abortion Migration Women Research Proposal

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¶ … controversial subject of abortion in America. The question of abortion is one that is physically and mentally stressful for any woman, but when the elements of public opinion and legal rights are added to that decision-making process as elements a woman must take into consideration when making the choice to abort a fetus, or not to abort it; then, the question must be asked: Whose body is it? Does a pregnant woman's body belong to her and her alone when she is considering abortion? Or, is her body de facto property of the state that governs her choices in deciding to have an abortion? In the United States, a woman does not make the decision to have an abortion alone. Her choice is regulated by state and federal laws that will impact the choices available to her when deciding on whether or not an abortion is in her -- and often times the unborn child's -- best interest.

During the early 19th century, laws governing abortion in America were, in all but a few states, the same laws that had existed in England when America was settled (Lewis, and Shimabukuro 2001). Around 1861, however, states had begun to revise their state laws, and, presumably under pressure from religious organizations, passed laws making abortions illegal at any point in a woman's pregnancy (Lewis and Shimabukuro). Since women in America did not win the right to vote until 1920 (Nineteenth Amendment), the lawmaking process and decisions governing women's choices regarding abortion, or lack thereof, were decided by men (Hull, and Hoffer 2010). This could easily be perceived as a control issue, perhaps the residue of a time when men actually did own the bodies of women as their wives and their daughters were concerned. N.E.H. Hull and Peter Charles Hoffer say:

"The laws that first made abortion a serious crime reflected profound changes in social and political relationships, in particular increasing complexity and tension in the association between men and women; new sources of male authority and new sources of moral authority and new ways of expressing that authority; and a hitherto unprecedented degree of governmental intervention in private life. In an era of rising middle-class domesticity, growing professionalism of doctors and ministers, the popularization of science, and new kinds of state-imposed social controls on everyday life, abortion became a way of redrawing boundaries of deviance that extended into the bedroom and the doctor's office (p. 11)."

Since voters, legislators, and most physicians and governmental representatives were (and continue to be) men, then, in the face of the legislating as regarded a woman's body, was a continuation of male domination and ownership -- a legal loophole -- of women's bodies.

Even after 1920, when women won the right to vote in America, the legislative processes, government, and the business world, including medicine, continued to be dominated by men. Women's rights, full and complete rights, over their own bodies and especially in choosing whether or not they would give birth, has… [read more]

Glenn Beck: "Glenn Beck: Most 'Controversial' Super Essay

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¶ … Glenn Beck: "Glenn Beck: Most 'controversial' Super Bowl ad." Glenn Beck.com. Feb 8, 2010. Accessed Feb 8, 2010 from http://www.glennbeck.com/content/articles/article/199/36078/

In a recent transcript posted to your Web site, you write about the controversial pro-life advertisement that ran during the Super Bowl. The transcript is entitled, "Glenn Beck: Most 'controversial' Super Bowl ad." The ad features Tim Tebow and his mom, and is a lighthearted if not "cheesy" depiction. You are absolutely correct in calling the ad "cheesy." You are also correct in the general observation that the ad at face value is harmless. it's just Tim Tebow's mom talking about how glad she is to have her son, and Tim hugging his mom in a light and fluffy commercial paid for by a Pro-Life organization. It is in fact the cheesiness of the ad that makes it so effective. Tugging at the heartstrings of consumers is exactly what advertising is designed to do, whether selling a product or a point-of-view. Free speech continues to guide the airwaves, although I will admit I would not want to see an ad for a neo-Nazi group or anything that implies hatred or harm towards other human beings. The Tebow ad, however, is well within the range of acceptable freedoms of speech.

Understandably, you and Pat criticize the "left" for loudly deeming the advertisement offensive. You lash out especially against Planned Parenthood and NARAL. As you well know, it is the express duty of Planned Parenthood to oppose any anti-abortion point-of-view. With all due respect, Planned Parenthood cannot be called a leftist extreme" group. They are just an organization that helps women educate themselves about their options for birth control and family planning. Planned Parenthood does not force people to have abortions, but they do wish for the right of all Americans to opt into or out of childbirth. As unpalatable as that idea sounds to you, it's still a part of the freedoms and liberties that you must support as an American.

Simply put, the opposition to the advertisement is as political as the advertisement itself. So it is only fair that groups like Planned Parenthood should voice their opinion as freely as the "Focus on the Family" campaign that sponsored the Tim Tebow advertisement. Either way, organizations are expressing their opinions using the mainstream media. We should all just be respectful of one another's views. I believe in choice but respect the views of those who do not believe an abortion is an ethical thing to do.

When taken at face value, the Tim Tebow ad is indeed completely inoffensive. You are correct. I like the idea that some viewers might think twice about having an abortion -- perhaps that decision is not right for them. it's not an easy decision, and all the options should be carefully weighed. The advertisement might benefit a person who is sitting on the fence. That's fine.

Furthermore, at no point in the advertisement are the terms "abortion" or "pro-life" even mentioned. You… [read more]

Abortion Post-Abortion Emotional Distress the Abortion Debate Term Paper

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Bibliography Sources: 5



Post-abortion emotional distress

The abortion debate

Divergent opinions

Extreme Ideologies

Research on post-abortion emotional distress

Driven by Ideology

Consensus is most emotional responses are moderate

Post-abortion emotional intervention

Environment of abortion and Treatment should be as with any other life stressor

Unique opportunity to access

The issue of abortion is a hotly debated topic in many social, political and religious circles. The issue is complicated and controverter as it is in some people's eyes, a right to choose and in other's eyes an intentional death of human life. The only thing that both camps agree in with regard to abortion is that there should be less abortions performed.

Bullough 16)

Ponnuru NP)

Irwin 23) the issue gets even more complicated when looked at from an emotional level, as the after effects of abortion, on the part of the woman having it can be minimal at best and life altering and devastating at worst and this doesn't even consider the emotional effects abortion can have on the man.

Kalish 14) This work will address the issue of abortion from an emotional level by reviewing current research on the issue, discussing the two extremes of reactions, as well as the moderate middle ground and lastly the work will outline ways to ally emotional effects of abortion, when they occur.

What I have learned from my research is that the controversy over abortion, in general has clouded the basic knowledge and research associated with the emotional effects of abortion, in the short- and long-term sense. Though many social scientists and researchers conclude that the emotional effects for most women are relatively mild there is also research evidence, called by some biased that indicates that this is not the case and that most if not all women who have abortions have some, if not extreme emotional reactions to it.

Over the last decade, a consensus has been reached in the medical and scientific communities that most women who have an abortion experience little or no psychological harm. Yet a woman's ability to cope psychologically after an abortion continues to be the subject of heated debates. Vocal anti-abortion advocates claim that most women who have abortions will suffer to some degree from a variant of post traumatic stress disorder called post abortion syndrome, characterized by severe and long lasting guilt, depression, rage, and social and sexual dysfunction. Why is there such a major discrepancy between the scientific consensus and anti-abortion beliefs?

Arthur 7)

The allegation that there are fabrication or at the very least, biases in the field of study, that create a situation where ideology drives research questions and findings. Though this is a dangerous precedence the real concern is that when there is emotional distress there is biased research guiding intervention and practice.

Books written by anti-abortion advocates that deal with post abortion effects are, by and large, heavily infected with bias. Not only is contrary evidence unrefuted, it is rarely even mentioned. Incorrect and out of date "facts" abound. The authors'… [read more]

Vatican Declaration the Vatican's Declaration on Procured Term Paper

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Vatican Declaration

The Vatican's Declaration on Procured Abortion was issued on 18 November 1974. During this time, abortion was mainly the result of the many premarital sexual connections begun during the late 1960's. The Church regarded this as a great problem, as contraception in the eyes of this institution was an evil similar to abortion: it prevents life and birth,… [read more]

Abortion Ethics Rosenblatt's Arguments Term Paper

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However, every woman should have the right to make up her own mind on the issue -- it should not be dictated by others.

Yes, the real problem does lie elsewhere, just as the author notes in Chapter 12. The real problem is unwanted pregnancy, and the problems that result from young women having unwanted babies. Rosenblatt is right; there should be more education and support to help curb teen pregnancy. Certainly all the women having abortions are not teens, but many of them are, and this exacerbates the problem. Without teen pregnancy, there would be far less need for abortion. That is a societal issue that must be addressed and conquered, and it seems that slowly, the teen pregnancy rate is dropping in this country. That could mean that someday, abortions might not be as common, and they would be used more for medical reasons (the mother's health, for example), and not just to terminate unwanted pregnancies. Still the right should remain, even if we do solve some of the problems in society that lead to abortions.


Weston, Anthony. A 21st Century Ethical Toolbox. New York: Oxford University…… [read more]

Abortion Takes Away the Fundamental Term Paper

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Another possible solution to deal with the issue of abortion is to help prevent unwanted pregnancies from happening in the first place. The government should design and implement new and improved programs to keep teenagers and others not wanting to have children from getting pregnant. Also, condoms and other birth control should be more readily available to teenagers and low-income women. While not all unwanted pregnancies will be prevented by these measures, the number can certainly be greatly reduced (Tribe 72).


It is true that women will lose the right to choose if abortion is made illegal, but no one should have the ability to destroy a life. Not only is abortion morally wrong, but it produces many harmful results. Unfortunately, abortion cannot be reversed. Abortion is final and its consequences are long-lasting. In order to protect women and unborn children, abortion must be made illegal.

Works Cited

Cozic, Charles P., and Jonathan Petrikin, ed. The Abortion Controversy. San Diego: Greenhaven Press, 1995.

Hadley, Janet. Abortion: Between Freedom and Necessity. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1996.

Reardon, David C. Aborted Women: Silent No More. Chicago: Loyola University Press, 1987.

Tribe, Laurence H. Abortion: The Clash of Absolutes. New…… [read more]

Teen Abortion Among Teenage Girls Term Paper

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(Brown et al., 2001)

The article also discussed income and poverty as factors that lead to abortion. The author asserts that the impact of income changes can vary among different ethnic groups.

The study asserts that there is a positive correlation between increases in income and increases in abortion rate among blacks and whites. However, the abortion rate did not… [read more]

Re Evaluating Abortion Essay

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Abortion is a heated topic in the contemporary society, as it has passionate supporters promoting both sides of the matter. While in an ideal world the concept of abortion would not even exist as a result of moral rules being widely accepted, conditions are different in the world today, with many seeming to consider that it is perfectly normal and some even treating it superficially. The majority of supporters emphasize the fact that one would have to be in a position when he or she considers abortion in order for the respective person to actually have a complex understanding of the practice. The topic really presents individuals with a paradox, as it is extremely simple to justify why it should be criminalized and, at the same time, it becomes especially intricate in particular situations.

The first tendency for most moral people would be to put across harsh criticism toward abortion and toward anyone supporting. Upon further analysis, however, one is likely to understand that this discussion is not as simple as it initially seems. In some cases people consider abortion to be their only solution. For example, a mother who is a drug addict and already has several children that she can't support is likely to fear the consequences of giving birth. The fact that she subjected her body to intense stress can increase the probability that the child is going to have a horrible birth defect.

While society has reached a point where common sense determines people's behavior, the masses are yet to have gotten a complex understanding of morality. Given the technologies and the resources available today, a woman giving birth to an unwanted child has numerous opportunities to help the respective child develop into a healthy and successful person. Mothers have the ability to give their children to individuals who are unable to have children and to thus contribute to society…… [read more]

Ethics LC1: Contribution Margin Essay

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Further, it strengthens the Biblical perspective that man and woman were created to supplement each other, and not for one to serve the other

The key advantage of this thought is that it reinforces the principles of justice, fairness, and equity. There are two fundamental disadvantages associated with his thought. First, it fails to achieve true equality for the female gender and portrays women as continually competing to catch up with them. Moreover, this perspective does not recognize that women have different likes and interests.

6 LC2: Moral Worth Criterion

The abortion debate has been in existence for centuries -- whether it is moral to end the life of fetus, regardless of the circumstances and the stage of pregnancy. The moral question behind the whole debate is whether or not a fetus has the same rights and privileges as any other human being (Siegel & Siegel, 2014). New concerns have arisen, one of which seeks to determine whether a fetus' right to life becomes more significant as the pregnancy progresses. The potentiality clause view expresses that the right to life is given based on one's potential to act like a person (Siegel & Siegel, 2014). Proponents of this view posit that the question of abortion ought not to be seen as a moral issue, simply because a fetus has no moral rights. The assumption is that since a fetus has no upper brain, it lacks the potential to develop the abilities characteristic of human nature, and hence, it cannot be accorded the moral rights that are naturally accorded to humans, including the right to life.

The evolving value clause partly supports the potentiality view. It holds that whether or not a fetus has moral rights is based on the stage of pregnancy (Siegel & Siegel, 2014). Towards this end, only late-term fetuses ought to be accorded the moral right to life. Towards this end, abortion is only immoral if it is done in the late stages of pregnancy.


Anne, L. (2013). On Equity Feminism and Gender Feminism. Patheos. Retrieved 23 October 2014 from http://www.patheos.com/blogs/lovejoyfeminism/2013/01/on-feminism-gender-roles-social-constructs-and-biology.html

Peavler, R. (2014). What is the Contribution Margin? About Money. Retrieved 24 October 2014 from http://bizfinance.about.com/od/pricingyourproduct/f/contribution-margin.htm

Siegel, N.S. & Siegel, R.B. (2014). Equality Arguments for Abortion Rights. UCLA Law Review. Retrieved 23 October 2014 http://www.uclalawreview.org/?p=4186… [read more]

Persuasive Speech Prolife Essay

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¶ … Prolife Arguments

In the past, prolife and prochoice groups have been locked in a vicious debate on whether or not abortion should be permitted. Both groups offer compelling and convincing reasons to back up their positions and for this reason, abortion remains a one of the most debated if not controversial issues today. Is abortion permissible on any grounds? What are the various arguments that have been advanced against abortion? Are these arguments compelling enough? In an attempt to provide answers to the questions above, I review some of the prolife arguments that have been presented in the past.

Abortion: Prolife Arguments

Biblical Position

To begin with, it is important to note that although the Bible does not make direct references to abortion, it does underscore the value of life in no uncertain terms. In that regard, it would be prudent to submit that the Bible does indeed abhor abortion.

Some of the biblical positions that seek to restate the value of life and hence reservations against abortions can be found in the Old Testament. Psalms 139 is one of the biblical verses that speaks against abortion (albeit implicitly). In this particular verse, David acknowledges the role God plays in the formation of a baby in its mother's womb. He says: "For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well…" (Psalms 139:13-16). From this particular verse, it is indeed clear that the Creator is actively involved in the formation of an individual right from conception. Aborting a fetus at any stage would not only be belittling the work of God, but also interfering with the same. Thus from a biblical perspective, a developing fetus must never be viewed as just mere biochemistry -- it is God's work in progress. Next, Genesis 1 explicitly points out that man was created in not only the image but also the likeliness of God (Genesis 1:26-27). In that regard, even the unborn child already bears God's image. For this reason, abortion is inherently wrong in the eyes of God as all human beings (whether born or unborn) are equal and fully human before him.

The New Testament also presents some arguments and instances that could be taken to mean that from a biblical perspective, abortion cannot be permissible. For instance, it should be noted that in the New Testament, Jesus was recognized by John the Baptist before he was even born -- i.e. while he was still in the womb of his mother (Luke 1:35-36). This is one of the clearest indicators that from a biblical perspective, no clear distinction exists between a fully grown individual and a baby that has not yet been born. If it is wrong to take the life of a fully grown human being, it cannot be regarded right to kill an unborn baby. In Matthew, it is written, "do unto others as… [read more]

CVS Available? Passing Judgment Case Study

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What if the boy Lisa B. has does not satisfy her and her husband's fantasy of what it is like to rear a boy child? In all instances, sex selective abortion does not seem to be morally defensible -- but that does not mean it is the center's job to pass judgment.

Q2. Would the center be well advised to develop a different policy regarding the availability of prenatal diagnosis for purposes of sex selection?

Passing judgment on the reasons that parents might seek CVS seems morally and legally troubling. The notion that healthcare providers can 'opt out' of giving abortions to certain women, prescribing birth control, or deny care based upon the provider's moral belief is hotly contested within the medical profession. The center should not have a stated policy of what is 'moral.' It can merely state when CVS is medically advisable, such as noting the link between gender and certain illnesses.

However, the fact that Lisa states that she is unwilling to have another girl and is determined to have a boy may indicate that she has unrealistic expectations about her parenting experience with a boy, and it is within a counselor's right to explore these reasons and discuss why she wants CVS. The central dilemma of the case is the degree to which the center should and can set personal and social policy. However, the center's policies cannot be determined by the personal, moral beliefs of the persons working at the center, and particularly given the history of the need to honor women's choices regarding autonomy over their own body, the center should not have an official position on…… [read more]

Stem Cell Research -- Ethical Issues Term Paper

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Stem Cell Research -- Ethical Issues

The positive, progressive view of stem cell research raises the promise of one day helping to heal individuals with diseases like Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, spinal injuries, cancer, among other health issues and serious medical disorders. One of the controversial aspects of stem cell research relates to whether or not human embryos should be destroyed in… [read more]

Rules of Law Term Paper

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As long as the female's life isn't endangered and she decides to terminate a pregnancy, it's a decision that should be respected. Furthermore, I think it's important for the state to step in when the mother to be wants to undergo abortion at say eight months, which is unhealthy and life risking.

Throughout time until today, various cases attempted to undermine the ruling and permitting abortion, and one of such a case was in 1992, Planned Parenthood v. Casey. In the case, Pennsylvania law was challenged in regards to the restrictions placed on pregnancy termination. In the end, the ruling of Roe v. Wade was still upheld in that it is a constitutional right for women to choose whether she or not wants an abortion before the second trimester, and/or if her life is at risk. However, it was also ruled in the case and remains a fact that a woman must visit the physician, the person who will conduct the abortion, several times prior to the procedure. The limitation here is the time frame during which the termination can be done. I disagree with this limitation because abortion isn't something people think cavalierly about. A lot of thought goes into make the decision; the choice to terminate or not. No matter whether the woman thinks her fetus is a baby or living thing, it is an invasive procedure that literally tugs at her insides. Nobody thinks or treads lightly knowing what she must undergo. Again, as I've stated, what a woman chooses to do with her body is her business, so why play the waiting game and all the red tape if she knows what she wants is an abortion. The restraint in certain facilities can, has, and will continue to purposely delay the termination process because of the employee's own personal agenda, thus women are then forced to have the baby.

The similarities between the two cases are that they determined and upheld the legality and constitutional right for women nationwide to decide whether she wants an abortion or not. However, the stark difference between the two is the latter aforementioned case expanded the limitations of the former. Not only can a woman undergo termination as long as the baby is not viable outside the womb, and if her health is in danger, but Planned Parenthood v. Casey broadened those set points. In the second case, it was ruled and clearly stated the female must make several trips to the abortion facility before her operation. Furthermore, there will be plenty of continued controversy regarding abortion and the various boundaries surrounding the choice to terminate or not. However, ultimately, it should be up to the woman, for it is she that shares her body and womb with the unborn life.


Planned Parenthood v. Casey . (n.d.). Wikipedia. Retrieved March 18, 2011, from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Planned_Parenthood_v._Casey#The_Court.27s_opinions

Roe v. Wade. (n.d.). Wikipedia. Retrieved March 18, 2011, from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roe_v._Wade#Justiciability

Roe v. Wade: Its History and Impact . (n.d.). Planned Parenthood. Retrieved March 18,… [read more]

Roe v. Wade &amp Texas: From District Thesis

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Roe v. Wade & Texas: From District Court to the U.S. Supreme Court & Aftermath

This work traces the history of Roe v. Wade in an attempt to discuss the evolution of the case, its significance and lastly how it changed politics and law in its aftermath. The work will briefly trace the case, from inception to the Supreme Court… [read more]

Roe v. Wade: Ethical Position Argument Term Paper

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Roe v. Wade: Ethical Position Argument

The Decision:

In 1973, the United States Supreme Court heard the case of "Jane Roe" filed in 1970 on behalf of an unidentified woman against District Attorney Henry Wade, then representing the state of Texas. By the time the appeal from district court was entertained by the Supreme Court, the case was actually moot,… [read more]

Foucault and Abortion Law Term Paper

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Foucault and Abortion Law (continued)

'Foucault-inflected' Analysis of Abortion Law as Human language Discourse Text

French 20th century philosopher-cultural theorist Michel Foucault's theories focus on relationships of human power to knowledge and discourses, and on manifestations of these in real life based on various (and varied) power dynamics - between and/or among individuals; institutions; and other entities. In fact, Foucault considers "the question at the center of everything" to be "what is power?" ("Strategies of Power: Michel Foucault" 41). According to Foucault, the concept of power within human language discourses represents:

mode of action not directly or immediately acting upon others... It acts on others' actions instead: an action upon an action, on existing actions or on actions that may occur now or in the future...[power] incites, and seduces, and it either simplifies or makes more difficult; in an extreme sense it constrains or absolutely forbids [translation mine] (Surveiller et punir 220)

Thus the kind of particular discursive power, as opposed to, say, "power over an object" ("Strategies of Power: Michel Foucault" 44) characteristically analyzed in Foucault's explorations of power/knowledge/discourse, most famously within his best-known work that focuses on power relationships in prisons and other institutions, Discipline and Punish [Surveiller et punir] (1977; [1975]), concerns power relationships as determined by our and/or others actions, in succession and combination. I will suggest here that, in terms of a particular given human language discourse text, in this case abortion law(s), nationally and/or internationally (or comparatively); using Foucault's theory of language/knowledge/power relationships, in order to analyze abortion law as a discursive text, may help us to understand abortion law-as-discursive text better, especially in terms of multi-level; multi-layered; inherently hierarchical imbedded language/knowledge/power relationships inevitably imbedded within such a text.

According to Foucault the text…… [read more]

Justice Harry Blackmun and Roe v. Wade Term Paper

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Style: Chicago  |  Bibliography Sources: 1


Justice Harry Blackmun

How did Justice Blackmun arrive at his conclusions regarding the opinion rendered on Roe v Wade?

On page 76 of her book, Becoming Justice Blackmun, author Greenhouse explains that Justice Blackmun - during the consideration of whether the Supreme Court actually had jurisdiction in the cases before it, and also considering the issues surrounding abortion - was intrigued by the "right to privacy" concept that had been used in a Court case six years prior to Roe v. Wade. It was a case called Griswold v. Connecticut and in that case a person named Griswold challenged Connecticut's law banning birth control pills. Griswold won that case and part of the reason was Griswold's lawyers argued the case based on the right of privacy of a woman to decide whether or not to use birth control medications. It is her decision to make, not the government's, the ruling stated.

Still, Blackmun did not have to get too deep into the right to privacy concept because his colleague Hugo Black was taking a leadership position regarding the abortion case, and was giving the concept of "health" the "broadest possible meaning"; that meant, abortion could protect a woman's physical health as well as her mental health.

On page 78, Greenhouse follows Blackmun's decision-making leading up to the big issue he was challenged with in 1970 about abortion; two cases came before the court about abortion early in that year. One was Doe v. Bolton, a Georgia case, which held that an abortion was all right if and when a doctor and two other doctors agree that the fetus would "...very likely be born with a grave, permanent, and irremediable mental or physical defect." In other words, if the doctors knew in advance that the baby may be a down syndrome child, or be ill physically, the abortion would be justified. Ten years in prison was the penalty for a doctor who performed an abortion in Georgia in a situation not described by the law.

Meantime, when Roe v. Wade came before the court in 1970, it was a lawsuit challenging a Texas law that meant if a doctor performed an abortion it was a crime, except in one case; that was if the abortion was performed "for the purpose of saving the life of the mother" (78) Otherwise it was illegal. And so both of these cases came before the court because "abortion-rights" individuals wanted to have the nation's highest court change the law to make abortion not a crime for doctors.

The two cases had reached the High Court because of the Ninth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which offered "support for a right to marital privacy" (79), Greenhouse explains. Also, the lawyers that handled those two cases all the way through district and federal courts found supportive language in the Bill of Rights; the Bill of Rights, Blackmun found, served to protect a "zone of privacy" within its language. And the district court had ruled that, "For whichever… [read more]

Stem Cell Research Term Paper

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Style: MLA  |  Bibliography Sources: 5


Stem Cell Research has been the topic of passionate debate within the public and political arena. Due to its potential for treatment of various diseases and injuries, stem cell research has received much support however it has also created controversy and presented examinations of ethical issues. Stem cell research is one of the most exciting fields of biology today, yet… [read more]

Abortion Societal Concerns About Essay

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Societal concerns about abortion since the Roe vs. Wade decision have changed dramatically, and in doing so are affecting the way some women prioritize their lives and the inconvenience of accepting the responsibility of motherhood. Societal rules have changed so much since that time that many women experience no remorse at all after having an abortion, and in fact some recent studies have shown that many women who justify such an event in their lives do so with a sense of a relief or even by telling themselves that they are accepting responsibility in a mature way by murdering an innocent human.

Those without any emotional distress post-abortion stated clearly before the abortion that they did not want to give birth since they prioritized work, studies and/or existing children." (Kero 2559).

This study seems to show that society has changed so dramatically that if a woman can set her priorities before even having an abortion, that same woman can continue her life with no psychological affects at all.

What is even more interesting about the study is that it purports that "women generally are able to make the complex decision to have an abortion without suffering regret or negative effects, as ascertained at the 1-year follow-up." There are two reasons why this is interesting, first; that we as a society are now at a point where some individuals no longer feel any compunction at all over the killing of a child, and secondly; that the study believes that long-term is one year. Long-term to most entities would be presumed at more than one-year and would probably be closer to ten or twenty years.

It would have been nice to have data reflecting studies from a lot longer time frame than one year…… [read more]

Criminal Law Both New Jersey Term Paper

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Criminal Law

Both New Jersey and New York have criminal codes in place that, separate of their common law counterparts, provide coherent outlines for the treatment of homicidal offenses in their state, from the negligent to the egregious. Like all states, both laws are subject to Federal Title 18 - Crimes and Criminal Procedure, and cover homicide, murder, and manslaughter,… [read more]

Unborn Victims of Violence Term Paper

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" They fear that the law could be interpreted to include otherwise legal abortions. They view the passage of this law as the first movement down a slippery slope that will lead to the redefinition of all unborn children from the moment of conception as equal to those who have been born, and see it as leading toward an end to legal abortions. As the head of Planned Parenthood, Gloria Feldt said, "If they are able to make fetuses people in law with the same standing as women and men, then Roe will be moot." (Rosenberg, 2003)

Lawmakers in favor of abortion rights have also seen this law as a precedent threatening the right to abortion (AP, 2004). Some events that took place as the law was being passed suggest their concerns may be valid. An amendment that would have increased penalties when the crime victim was a woman without making any definition about when life began was voted down (AP, 2004), suggesting that part of the intent was to make inroads against abortion rights.

By 2003, 28 states had written fetal-homicide laws. In half of the states, the law only takes effect if the fetus could have lived had it been born then -- around 24 weeks. However, the other 14 states protect the unborn child from the moment the embryo implants itself -- the onset of pregnancy, placing the impact of the law well within time frames for legal abortions (Rosenberg, 2003).

The sum effect of these laws is to make those in favor of choice in abortion wary. Perhaps, if tested, the Supreme Court will once again rule that the rights of an unborn, nonviable fetus are not equal to those of the mother carrying it, but only time will tell.


Associated Press (AP). 2004. "Fetus-rights bill passes Senate." Newsday, March 26.

Rosenberg, Debra. 2003. "The War Over Fetal Rights." Newsweek, June 9.

Scully, Sean. 1998. "Cloning debate in Congress focuses…… [read more]

Judith Thomson's Views on the Moral Rights Term Paper

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¶ … Judith Thomson's views on the moral rights of the fetus. What is the conservative argument that she is questioning? What is the violinist analogy, and what exactly is the point of this analogy? Discuss two objections to her analogy (no straw man objections). Consider how she might best reply to those objections. Explain whether you think those replies to the objections are successful. (Defend your answer.)

Abortion has always been a divisive topic and some of history's most important thinkers have gotten actively engaged in discussing it. Judith Thomson attempted to raise public awareness concerning the fact that abortion can actually be justified as long as the circumstances make it possible for her to do so. By attacking the principal anti-abortion Thomson wants to demonstrate that murder can be acceptable and that an abortion has nothing to do with morality. The philosopher considered that one of the principal methods of defending abortion would be for her to discuss directly in regard to the strongest anti-abortion principles, as this would provide debaters with the opportunity to observe that their thinking is flawed and unjust.

While anti-abortionists typically relate to the morality of the process with the purpose of emphasizing that it is wrong, Thomson directly refutes this idea by speaking about abortions that are meant to save a mother's life or that occur as a consequence of the fact that the pregnancy results from a rape. From Thompson's perspective, abortion an also be considered morally permissible in a situation when the mother tried to use contraception and was unable to stop a pregnancy by doing so.

Thompson uses a situation in which a person wakes up near an unconscious violinist with the purpose of demonstrating…… [read more]

Stem Cell Research Term Paper

Term Paper  |  8 pages (2,617 words)
Bibliography Sources: 6


Stem Cell Research

Since the stem cell was first isolated in the 1980s, is when the controversy began about its role in modern medicine. The main reason is there are deep seeded divisions between the different sides in the debate. At the heart of the issue, was if aborted fetuses should be used in the process to create clones of… [read more]

Ethics of Reproduction Essay

Essay  |  3 pages (870 words)
Bibliography Sources: 3


Ethics of Reproduction

Of the six million women who become pregnant in the United States each year, half of the pregnancies are unintended. Each year, about 1.3 million American women end the pregnancy with abortion. What would the consequences be if these women were allowed abortion only in the case where the pregnancy was a threat to their lives?

The unintended pregnancies in married women can result from lack of precaution. If these women are not allowed to resort to abortion, the result may be only economic -- being saddled with costs of a baby. However in the case of a rape, a woman is subjected to the trauma of rape and a pregnancy that she has not even thought about. In that case if she were to be forced to deliver the baby, it is imposing the trauma on her all her life, and this is patently unjust. In the case of rape with a minor, the 'mother' is still a child and not up to the task of being a parent and secondly economic and other burdens is likely to be cast on her.

Dionne (2009) argues that in the case of teenage pregnancy, moral and social institutional control has to be initiated with abstinence and contraception devices and education has to be provided to prevent unwanted pregnancies. Still the issue of unwanted pregnancies in teens cannot be ignored and they are a social problem for which abortion could be the solution. As long as the society cannot ensure that there will be no rape and teen age pregnancies, prohibiting abortion for these victims will lead to hardships for a lot of people. Therefore such a move is unwise. It is also a flaw that people will be forced to make huge sacrifices for what they did not cause or desire in the first place. (Munson; Munson, 2000)

Q2. Do people have the right to do anything they want with their bodies?

Theoretically a person must be able to do anything they want or can with their bodies, but by a fiction of law the state can prohibit that freedom and that is why in most cases suicide is punishable. Individuals in the state are obliged to look after their lives and the state is obliged to preserve their life from other dangers. However while there is a claim that there is a right to life, therefore the individual must do things necessary to do whatever is possible to maintain life -- including forcing the individual to keep his life. That argument is pertaining to an individual and his or her life. (Beauchamp;…… [read more]

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