To begin with, I don’t think abortion is a question of religion, but of civilization. I am pro-life myself. Having said so, I like to keep fixed on this side with no exceptions. There are those who consider certain cases as exceptions for abortion, such as rape, or when the mother’s life is at risk, or if the child will have significant birth defects that would be an excessive burden.
In my opinion, being pro-life and having exceptions in favor of abortion is hypocritical. Chastising others for trivializing the life-and-death nature of abortion and for ignoring the rights of the fetus, yet thinking it is fine to terminate an innocent life just to remove emotional/financial burdens on others (aka convenience), as if the product of rape denies you the same rights as a regular fetus. I’ll come back to this later on.
I understand there is an argument, which I do not agree with, that a fetus is not considered to be human until the later stages of development. I find this argument to have no option in subjectivity. However, whether or not we agree or disagree on the stages at which a fetus becomes a human, one thing that we can be sure of is that a fetus will eventually become an individual human being. Is denying another human being’s right to live prior to their development any different from killing them later on?
Imagine for a second someone has the winning lottery ticket yet he doesn’t know he has. I, who does know this someone has the winning lottery ticket, decide to take it from him and collect it. I don’t think it’s even an option to say that, since the original owner had no awareness and conscience of having won the money, and won’t ever have, the ticket and the money were not stolen. I took the ticket from him and I am a thief for having taken both, the ticket and the money. No palliatives.
I also am aware of the “It’s my body and I’ll do what I want with it” argument. In today’s society we generally try to afford individuals as many freedoms as possible provided they aren’t infringing upon the rights of another human (current or future). Hence I think this argument does not adequately recognize that your needs for personal freedom do in fact infringe upon the freedom of another. We tend to forget this because the other party currently lacks a voice to defend themselves.
See the European map, see the old USSR. To think that there are places where 87.5% of pregnancies are aborted is scary. Have in mind this is only showing legally obtained abortions. I imagine it’s a combination of poverty and por affective/sexual education. According to this other study 22% of American pregnancies end in abortion. This is sad. Those figures are high no matter how you look at them. Way too high, A priori, I imagined it would be on the area of 1-5% in all developed western European countries.
In today’s society it is preferred for abortion to be referred to as a voluntary interruption of pregnancy. It raises more sympathy since abortion refers to a child who is prevented from life, and the concept a voluntary interruption refers to the mother and her exercise of her so called “freedom”.
As aforementioned, there are those who accept counted cases so to commit abortion. For example when rape, or when it is performed to save the life of the pregnant woman, medically called therapeutic abortion. Those who are inclined to sacrifice the life of the fetus in order to protect the life of the mother are basing such a choice on the assumption that the mother’s life is worth more than that of the child, which is arbitrary and false. All human beings have the same dignity and the same value. The first right of a person is the right to live, which is the foundation and condition of the possibility to exercise all other human rights. The right to live is not competent to society or the public authority. It is neither in society’s hand nor in the Government’s hand to grant life for some and take it from others. To deny this basic right constitutes an injustice.
Another more dramatic and exceptional case of therapeutic abortion is that in which the continuation of the pregnancy involves the certain death of both mother and child. It clearly depends on the intentions. The doctor who intends to save both, mother and child, does not interrupt the process of pregnancy to save at least the life of the mother, his intention is always to save the lives of the two. His action is a legitimate therapy, and cannot be considered as a voluntary interruption of pregnancy.
In contradiction and hypocritizing myself to what I have aforementioned said and exposed, while I certainly and definitely do not agree with abortion for convenience, there are certain circumstances I can think of where I can sympathize and appreciate the complexity and delicateness of the situation. My personal clear example would be by saving a life. It is still murder, and I would have no option but to learn to live with such a burden for the rest of my days. I just hope I never have to consider it in real life. In theory, I definitely say give the unborn child a chance. In practice, it could very well be a very different story.