The issue of abortion is one of the most controversial and polarizing topics today. While some view it as an essential human right, others consider it an ethical transgression. The 1973 Roe v. Wade Supreme Court case established women’s constitutional liberty to have an abortion without excessive government interference (Sanger 5). However, the topic continues to be the subject of political protests, partisan party platforms, and media debate. Over forty states still require pregnant girls to justify their decision to have an abortion before a judge (Sanger XV). Abortion presents numerous pros and cons that must be carefully evaluated.
Firstly, pro-choice arguments mainly center around women’s right to control their reproductive system. Abortion is viewed as the termination of a pregnancy rather than a baby. Proponents of this position claim that personhood begins at birth, not conception, so fetuses are considered a cluster of cells whose right to life is superseded by the mother’s right to autonomy and self-determination. Furthermore, they argue that banning the procedure is ineffective and harmful because it deprives women of access to safe medical conditions (Ahmed). The pros of legalizing abortion include protecting women’s rights to self-determination and decreasing the risk of pregnancy-related deaths.
In contrast, pro-life advocates view unborn fetuses as human beings with a sanctified right to life. They believe that personhood begins at conception, and thus abortion is immoral and equivalent to murder. Moreover, the procedure is physically painful for the baby and causes lasting psychological damage to the mother. Abortion should not be used as a form of contraception, and if a woman becomes pregnant, she should accept responsibility for her actions by having the baby. The cons of legalizing abortion involve ethical concerns around the fetus’ right to life and women avoiding the consequences of their behavior.
In conclusion, abortion is a delicate and controversial topic that requires careful consideration. The advantages of legalizing abortion include respecting women’s right to autonomy over their reproductive system and providing them access to safe and standardized procedures. However, pro-life advocates argue that abortion undermines the fetuses’ right to life and encourages women to engage in promiscuous behavior by offering them a way to avoid the consequences of their actions. The greatest point of difference seems to be whether personhood begins at conception or birth.
Ahmed, Zara. “Abortion rates don’t drop when the procedure is outlawed. But it does make it more dangerous.” NBC News. Web.
Sanger, Carol. About Abortion. Harvard University Press, 2018.