Topics: Abortion, Pregnancy, Birth control Pages: 6 (1465 words) Published: September 28, 2013
PRO Legal Abortion

A woman's right to choose abortion is a "fundamental right" recognized by the US Supreme Court. The landmark abortion case Roe v. Wade was decided on Jan. 22, 1973, and remains the law of the land. [49]

Personhood begins at birth, not at conception. Abortion is the termination of a pregnancy, not a baby. Personhood at conception is not a proven biological fact.

Fetuses are incapable of feeling pain when an abortion is performed. According to Stuart W. G. Derbyshire, PhD, Senior Lecturer at the University of Birmingham (England), "[n]ot only has the biological development not yet occurred to support pain experience, but the environment after birth, so necessary to the development of pain experience, is also yet to occur." [10]

Access to legal, professionally-performed abortions reduces injury and death caused by unsafe, illegal abortions. The World Health Organization estimated in 2006 that "back-alley" abortions cause 68,000 maternal deaths each year in countries where abortion is not legal. [11]

The anti-abortion position is usually based on religious beliefs and threatens the vital separation of church and state. Religious ideology should not be a foundation for law in the United States.

Modern abortion procedures are safe. The risk of a woman’s death from abortion is less than one in 100,000, [12] whereas the risk of a woman dying from giving birth is 13.3 deaths per 100,000 pregnancies. [13] Furthermore, a 1993 fertility investigation of 10,767 women by the Joint Royal College of General Practitioners and Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists found that women who had at least two abortions experienced the same future fertility as those who had at least two natural pregnancies. [14]

Access to abortion is necessary because contraceptives are not always readily available. Women need a doctor's prescription to obtain many birth control methods, such as the pill, the patch, the shot, and the diaphragm. About half of all large group insurance plans do not cover any form of prescription contraception, and only a third cover the birth control pill. A July/Aug. 2001 Guttmacher Institute study of health care insurers found that 75% of insured women lacked coverage for contraceptive services. [15] As of 2009, 17 million US women were completely uninsured. [16]

The American Medical Association (AMA) recognizes abortion as a medical procedure if performed by a licensed physician in compliance with good medical practice standards. There are about 1,800 licensed physicians who provide abortions in the United States. These doctors, not politicians, should have the authority to make medical decisions regarding abortion. [17]

Abortion gives couples the option to choose not to bring babies with severe and life-threatening medical conditions to full term. Fragile X syndrome, the most common genetic form of mental retardation, affects about 1 in 4,000 males and 1 in 8,000 females. One in 800 babies have Down Syndrome, and one in 3,500 babies are born with Cystic Fibrosis. [18] It is wrong to sentence a child to life with an acute handicap.

Many women who choose abortion don't have the financial resources to support a child. A Sep. 2005 survey in the peer-reviewed journal Perspectives on Sexual and Reproductive Health asking women why they had an abortion found that 73% of respondents said they could not afford to have a baby, and 38% said giving birth would interfere with their education and career goals. Reproductive choice protects women from financial disadvantage. [19]

Motherhood must never be a punishment for having sexual intercourse. President Barack Obama said during a Mar. 29, 2008 campaign speech in Johnston, Pennsylvania, "I have two daughters... I'm going to teach them first about values and morals, but if they make a mistake, I don't want them punished with a baby."

A baby should not come into the world unwanted. 49% of all pregnancies...
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