There is no doubt about the fact that abortion is one of the most sensitive topics under debate in recent decades because it involves discussion of such issues as public morality and personal responsibility. It would be fair to say that pro-life and pro-choice sides have their own supporters, so their power is approximately equal, which makes it even harder for society to reach consensus. The current paper focuses on the idea that abortions should be legally banned, as well as that they should be considered to be morally unacceptable. There are several reasons to justify this point of view, encompassing a wide scope of aspects from religion to health. Firstly, abortion is a violation of a human right for life, secondly, it is morally wrong from the standpoint of practically any religion, and thirdly, it damages health and psychological wellness of a woman.
First of all, when discussing abortion, it should be noted that today’s society often resorts to euphemisms in order to make immoral things sound more acceptable. This is part of social influence to shape women’s mind in the way that she should treat abortion just as a common medical operation like, say, taking out a tooth. This point of view has become popular for many decades despite oppression based on religious and moral argumentation. It is well planted in society, as it allows women to treat fetuses as part of their body, which do not yet have rights or feelings. However, despite the fact that it is convenient and soothing to think in such a way, it is important to understand that one becomes a person after conception, not after birth. This perspective changes the appearance of things completely and makes it impossible to ignore the rights of human beings waiting to be born.
The most crucial right of an individual is the right for life, which is taken away in case of abortion. So, if in other cases deprivation of life is considered to be a murder, it is not the case with abortion according to a typical code of ethics that secular societies have. The argument, which is usually used in order to defend the position, is that fetus is not a person, because it is not conscious in the way that a normal human is. This means that he or she cannot talk or reason in order to prove their right to live. However, if this argument is taken for granted, this would mean that new-born babies would have no more guaranteed chances to survive because neither of them is proved to reason and naturally neither of them can speak.
The point of view that life begins at the point of conception has been proved with research, so renowned scientists do not hesitate to state their opinions on the matter. Thus, there are clear physiological signs that allow to state that a fetus is a human at a very early stage. So, even gender can be established between just the fifth and the ninth day after conception. Then, more evident attributes of human life appear:
This is an account of just the first month of a fetus’s development after conception. It is not a secret that abortions are often carried out at later stages when even more human traits develop. It is also a proven fact that pain is felt by the unborn during the abortion if it is more than twenty weeks after conception. Yet, this might be also true when earlier stages are discussed. These arguments are enough to state that a fetus is a human being from its conception and hence abortion is human rights violation.
The second significant argument is related to religion, whatever influential religion is taken. Though in most states church is separated from state, it is still a matter of personal choice for individuals, as most people claim to be believers. This allows to state that spirituality is an important argument against abortion, as it violates foundations of humanity. Thus, if Christianity is taken, the sixth commandment should be born in mind (which is also relevant for Judaism), that states “Thou shalt not kill” (Exodus 20:30). As it has been discussed above, physiologically conception is a point where human life begins, so it would be fair to recognize that killing a human being at any stage of his or her life is an offence against God.
It is also remarkable that there is consensus among world religions on abortion, so it is not purely Christian invention. Thus, for instance, it is also a sin in Hinduism: “Classical Hindu texts demonstrate strong opposition to abortion. One text compares abortion to the killing of a priest, while another considers abortion a worse sin than killing one’s own parents”( Hilton). In the same way, Buddhists reject violence whatever it relates too, and surely a deliberate taking of human life can be treated as break of this non-violent attitude. Islam is even more radical about abortions, so it is quite obvious that religions most typically believe that abortion is immoral. Because of such moral weight and scope of religions included on the list, their argument should not be ignored.
Finally, when speaking of abortion, it is impossible to ignore the fact that it deals not only with a baby but also with a potential mother. Even though many women consciously or unconsciously agree to undergo abortion, not many of them are aware of numerous bodily and mental consequences. It appears that even if a woman believes to be ready to cope with emotional aftermath, it is not so in practice. Even if psychological trauma is put aside, purely physiological risks are enough to at least inform a woman about them. Based on these data, many of those women who resort to such an extreme measure would think twice before taking risks. However, because abortion is a profitable business ranging in average from three hundred to a thousand dollars for each operation, it looks clear why medicals avoid warning women.
In 2004 the following information was presented to the Senate based on medical research:
It is true that efforts are made to ensure that abortion is not used as a means of contraception, and figures are not as frightening as they used to be decades ago. However, it is also true that social factors have tremendous influence on abortion rates even now. Thus, for instance, it is reported that an African American woman is several times more likely to undergo abortion than her white counterpart. This fact makes it clear that abortion is an issue that lies in multiple dimensions simultaneously. So, in this respect, it is not enough to speak about only religious, moral or physiological contexts.
Of course, educational programs have effect because negative aspects of abortion should be known to the public. Pro-choice activists often speak about liberty as an argument in favor of abortion, yet it should be born in mind that the extent of freedom is measured by the level of responsibility that a person is ready to take. Otherwise, when a woman has no other choice except abortion, it is obvious that she is not free but just helpless because she finds it impossible to manage her life in more productive ways.
Besides, the social element of the problem, which was mentioned above, should not be excluded from discussion. Abortion is often about social conditions, not freedom or morality. This is why it should be of governmental concern to ensure better conditions for wider layers of population in order to make abortion an exception rather than a rule in the life of women who want to take active position in their lives.
In conclusion, it should be noted that abortion is still a controversial issue with no uniform public opinion on the matter. However, there are significant arguments against abortion such as human rights’ violation, break of religious code, as well as health and mental issues caused to women who undergo this operation. This is why it would be fair to state that abortions should be banned at all levels.