Morality of Abortion: An Analysis

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  • Topic: Human, Infant, Fetus
  • Pages : 2 (582 words )
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  • Published : April 24, 2013
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Phil 230
Assignment 2

Morality of Abortion Analysis

According to Tooley’s argument, unlike animals and other subjects, human beings have both consciousness and self-consciousness. Therefore killing people is morally wrong. He also argues that the fetus doesn’t have self-consciousness, thus abortion is morally permissible. First, Michael Tooley says that we have the obligation to secure for individual things that we desire. For example, private properties should be protected because they are desired by the owners. Therefore, depriving one’s life is not permissible if one desires life. Second, Michael Tooley clearly makes a definition of what subjects are capable of having desires. He says that only the subject of experiences and other mental states has desire. In other words, desire is not merely the need for something. Cars don't work without gasoline. They need us to filled gas into their fuel tanks. However, according to the second premiss in Michael Tooley’s argument, cars don't really desire the gasoline because they are not experiencing subjects. Third, Michael Tooleys argues that if we desire something, we must know the concepts of those things. For example, we totally know what the meaning of being alive is, and almost all of us try to pursue a happy life. At the end of Tooley’s argument, he concludes that since fetus and infants don't have self-consciousness, so they are not capable of having desires. Therefore, abortion is morally permissible, and infanticide is morally permissible when nobody wants to raise the infant. Advocates of prohibition of abortion believe that states should ban abortion because of two primary reasons. One is that abortion is a kind of murder, and we have to protect potential human life. The other is that abortion is inconvenient and harmful for women’s health. Fetus and infants have the potential to become a normal human being with the self-consciousness. Although fetus and new born infants don't have...
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