Abortion - an Ethical Controversy

Topics: Pregnancy, Abortion, Fetus Pages: 6 (1990 words) Published: May 18, 2006

An Ethical Controversy

One of the western world's most controversial ethical issues in today's society is the act of abortion and its legislation. Abortion is the process in which a baby is killed whilst still in the mother's womb. This is performed for a variety of reasons. Due to the severity of the consequences of an abortion and the moral and religious elements involved, this is an ethical controversy and has divided people for decades.

Abortion is the act of killing the foetus or baby while it is still in the mother's womb. In the US and many other countries this is legal for the first four months of the pregnancy as aborting after four months is said to be terminating the life of not so much a foetus but a baby. There are a few different methods of abortion. One is to have the baby surgically removed through which the baby's feet are pulled by the abortionist and the living baby is pulled out of the womb except for the head. The abortionist then creates a wound in the base of the baby's skull with scissors or a metal tube and removes the baby's brain with a sucking vacuum-like machine before completely delivering a dead baby. Another way is to medically abort which involves taking medication in the form of a tablet to make impossible conditions in the womb for the baby to live and then delivering the dead foetus.

Abortion is an ethical controversy due to the consequences of the decisions made by the individuals involved. Whether it's called a foetus or a baby, a form of life is destroyed which deepens the importance of the issue and its ethics.

Since 1977, USA has 43 million recorded abortions and thousands more suspected ‘back alley' abortions. A new readily available abortion drug, RU-486, has prevented recent abortion statistics from being accurately recorded as this option of pregnancy termination doesn't involve registering the pregnancy or abortion. RU-486 involves interfering with the hormone that keeps the baby implanted in the wall of the uterus, progesterone, killing her baby.

One in every three pregnancies in Australia are aborted however movements towards introducing the drug RU-486 have been strongly pushed through parliament in recent months with success so this statistic is expected to rise dramatically.

The two ‘sides' or arguments that support and reject abortion are often referred to as pro-choice (for) and pro-life (against). Surprisingly, the majority of women are against abortions and the majority of men are for the procedure however both have justifiable arguments and are strongly supported by many different organisations, groups and cultures. The arguments that pro-choice presents are often related to the feelings, choices and lifestyles of the mother. The arguments are as follows:

It is the woman's body to do with as she chooses.
Making abortion illegal gives government control over a women's body. Personal freedom is being taken away.

Back alley abortions would increase if abortion was illegal. Young women will always be seeking abortion whether it is legal or not. For this reason, if abortion was illegal it would just make young women have to resort to dangerous and risky procedures. These methods often lead to sterility or other harm, even death.

One brief mistake can take away a woman's childhood and trap her for life. We all make mistakes, especially when we are young. Even a good responsible woman can make one mistake that will take away her life plans and trap her in the life of a young mother.

It is better to have the baby aborted than have it bought up in a poor and neglected environment. Raising a child is a full-time laborious job with huge financial burdens. If a child is not wanted it will lead to neglect and abuse of the child who will then be at more risk of growing up to be a criminal, drug addict and burden to society.

Abortion is not murder because it is not yet a human person. The foetus doesn't...
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