Life, Death, and the Political
issues surrounding Abortion
Few issues have embodied such controversy as abortion has. The various people involved in the abortion debate not only have strong beliefs, but each group has a self appeal that clearly reflects what they believe to be the essential issues. The abortion supporters see individual choice as central to the debate: If a woman cannot choose to terminate an unwanted pregnancy, a condition which affects her body and possibly her entire life, then she has lost one of her most basic human rights. These issues of abortion believe that while a fetus is a potential life, its life cannot be placed on the same level with that of a woman. On the other side, the anti-abortionist argue that the fetus is human and therefore given the same human rights as the mother. They believe that when a society legalizes abortion, it is sanctioning murder.
It is my personal opinion that abortion must remain legal if we are to uphold the Constitution and respect women as equal individuals. A great number of people agree that the single most important effect of legalization has been the substitution of safe, legal procedures for abortions that formerly were obtained illegally. This substitution quickly led to a dramatic decline in the number of women who died or suffered serious, sometimes permanent, injury. Another equally important result of legalization concerns is equity; before abortion was legal, it was poor women, minority women, and very young women who suffered most. Life, Death and the Political issues surrounding Abortion are what they had to deal with.
In today's advanced societies, technology has simplified the abortion procedure to a few basic safe methods. However, technology, has also enhanced one's knowledge of the fetus. Through ultrasound, fetal therapy, and amniocentesis the complex life before birth is revealed. It is this potential human life that is at the heart of debate.
Scientists identify the first moment of human life to begin the instant a sperm cell unites with an egg cell. The billions of cells that collectively make up a human being are body cells. Unless manipulated, these body cells are and remain what they appear to be: skin, hair, bone, muscle, and so. Each has some type of function in life and performs that function until it dies. Other rare cells, know as germ cells, have the power to transform themselves into every other kind of human cell. It is only in combination that the male and female sex cells create a fetus. The uniting is complete within twelve hours, at which time the egg is fertilized and becomes known as a "zygote," containing the full set of 46 chromosomes required to create a new human life. It is at that point that life begins and should be respected with the same laws that apply to us all. Whether we are dependent on a womb or not conception creates life and makes that life one of a kind.
Abortion supporters say to be a person, there must be evidence of a personality for life to begin. Animals contain biological characteristics, but that does not qualify them as a person. It takes more than ten day after the fertilization for the fetus to become anything more than a hollow ball of cells. During the first week, the hollow ball just floats and is not even attached to the uterine wall. Not until the beginning of the fourth wee does a heart begin to beat, and by the end of the fifth week evidence of the cerebral hemispheres form. The possession of 46 chromosomes does not make a cell a person, because most of the cells of your body contain these chromosomes. If possession of these cells make some thing a person, then it would seem that possession of a different number would make something else. A personality is formed when a baby has entered the world. It acts and reacts to situation and forms its opinions in that manner. It is only then that we can consider it a unique person with a unique...
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