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Secular reasons for and against legalising abortion
#1
Secular reasons for and against legalising abortion
This thread is similar to my previous thread on same sex marriage.

What are the secular (as in, non-religious) reasons for and against legalising abortion? I outlined some for both sides below to kick start the thread. I put it in the following format: first, I outline the reasons for a particular side, then I follow it with objections to each reason given. Obviously, this is not exhaustive and I tried to keep it brief, so that it serves more as a springboard for further discussion as opposed to a complete case or argument for each of the points. Of course, if you have any other secular reason or argument for or against legalising abortion, then please present it for discussion.


Reasons against legalising abortion

1. Human life begins at conception, so ending this life by means of abortion is akin to murder.
2. Adoption is a viable alternative to abortion.
3. Abortion can result in medical complications later in life for the woman involved.
4. Legalising abortion will inevitably lead to selective abortion based on genetic abnormalities.

Objections
Obj 1. The concept of personhood is different from the concept of human life, personhood does not applies to the fetus as it cannot be regarded as a fully separate entity from the mother.
Obj 2. This assumes that the only reason a woman would want to get an abortion is to avoid raising a child. But this isn’t the case, the full nine month pregnancy process is itself full of complications and costs and it requires a commitment that some women are simply not prepared to make at the point in life when they decide to have an abortion.
Obj 3. Abortion is a safe medical procedure with a very low risk of complications and no real effect on the health of the woman in the future.
Obj 4. This is a slippery slope argument; both are different issues and it doesn’t necessary follow from legalising abortion that full blown selective abortion will be implemented.



Reasons for legalising abortion

1. A fetus is not a person, it is also incapable of feeling pain until about the 26th week, well after the time when most abortions are performed.
2. A woman’s ability to have control of her own body, which includes her ability to decide wether or not to have an abortion, is a fundamental right.
3. A woman who is denied abortion is put both at a financial disadvantage and under a heavy emotional and physiological burden.
4. Legalising abortion reduces the dangers and injury caused by unsafe and illegal abortion procedures by giving women access to modern and safe abortion procedures.

Objections
Obj 1. Some studies show that the fetus can actually feel pain during the later part of the first trimester, when most abortions take place.
Obj 2. A woman’s right to have control over her own body should also include taking the necessary measures to prevent unwanted pregnancies by the responsible use of contraception or, if contraceptive methods are not available, abstinence.
Obj 3. Abortions themselves often cause psychological pain and stress and women who have them tend to regret it later in life.
Obj 4. There is no need to opt for such an unsafe and illegal procedure when the safer and more viable alternatives of adoption is a possibility.
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#2
RE: Secular reasons for and against legalising abortion
Well....yep. What are we supposed to talk about now?
'The more I learn about people the more I like my dog'- Mark Twain

'You can have all the faith you want in spirits, and the afterlife, and heaven and hell, but when it comes to this world, don't be an idiot. Cause you can tell me you put your faith in God to put you through the day, but when it comes time to cross the road, I know you look both ways.' - Dr House

“Young earth creationism is essentially the position that all of modern science, 90% of living scientists and 98% of living biologists, all major university biology departments, every major science journal, the American Academy of Sciences, and every major science organization in the world, are all wrong regarding the origins and development of life….but one particular tribe of uneducated, bronze aged, goat herders got it exactly right.” - Chuck Easttom

"If my good friend Doctor Gasparri speaks badly of my mother, he can expect to get punched.....You cannot provoke. You cannot insult the faith of others. You cannot make fun of the faith of others. There is a limit." - Pope Francis on freedom of speech
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#3
RE: Secular reasons for and against legalising abortion
Quote:4. Legalising abortion will inevitably lead to selective abortion based on genetic abnormalities.


Actually, not a bad idea as long as it is voluntary.
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#4
RE: Secular reasons for and against legalising abortion
(October 14, 2014 at 11:42 am)Bad Wolf Wrote: Well....yep. What are we supposed to talk about now?

Well, do you disagree with the reasons and objections raised against either side or know of any other arguments which are not in the OP?
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#5
RE: Secular reasons for and against legalising abortion
Sorry, it's such a good summary that it's hard to think of anything substantial to add. You've really boiled it down.
I'm not anti-Christian. I'm anti-stupid.
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#6
RE: Secular reasons for and against legalising abortion
(October 14, 2014 at 11:42 am)Bad Wolf Wrote: Well....yep. What are we supposed to talk about now?

I have several objections however I don't have much time to spent debating in the forum since I'm gonna be busy for the next week and just starting a conversation that I won't continue it's pointless so I'm gonna keep my objections for myself.

(October 14, 2014 at 11:48 am)Minimalist Wrote:
Quote:4. Legalising abortion will inevitably lead to selective abortion based on genetic abnormalities.


Actually, not a bad idea as long as it is voluntary.
Sounds logic. If a future child of mine it's gonna have a abnormality, generate or hereditary disease I would certainly want to know.
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#7
RE: Secular reasons for and against legalising abortion
Going backward from birth, at what point was the entity in question not a human being?
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#8
RE: Secular reasons for and against legalising abortion
(October 14, 2014 at 11:48 am)Minimalist Wrote:
Quote:4. Legalising abortion will inevitably lead to selective abortion based on genetic abnormalities.


Actually, not a bad idea as long as it is voluntary.

Now if we can only develop a prenatal test for the christards gene.
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#9
RE: Secular reasons for and against legalising abortion
(October 14, 2014 at 10:37 am)Dolorian Wrote: Obj 2. A woman’s right to have control over her own body should also include taking the necessary measures to prevent unwanted pregnancies by the responsible use of contraception or, if contraceptive methods are not available, abstinence.

this assumes that the woman seeking the abortion wasn't taking the necessary measures to prevent unplanned pregancies. No method of birth control is 100% effective and even the best laid plans can go wrong (see what I did there? Cool Shades). Even if I took every precaution to reduce my chances of becoming pregnant short of abstinence or celibacy, no one has the right to take away from me the ability to make choices about what happens to my body if I become pregnant if I don't want to remain so. Only I get to make that choice, and the only person for whom I can make that choice is myself. I don't get to choose what others do to their bodies just like they don't get to make that choice for me.

With regards to abstinence, that's simply unrealistic. Humans are incredibly social and one aspect of our sociality is our sexuality. We don't just have sex to produce offspring, we do it to increase pair bonding and intimacy and to feel connected to each other. Wide spread abstinence is a moronic thing to expect.
Teenaged X-Files obsession + Bermuda Triangle episode + Self-led school research project = Atheist.
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#10
RE: Secular reasons for and against legalising abortion
I don't think #1 is really an reason for abortion. It's a reason why it is ok, but not a reason to have one, if you know what I mean. Instead, I'd say that legalizing abortions helps the entire public sector by reducing crime rates, as well as reducing reliance on welfare.

I'll try and address the objections to the reasons for legalizing, just for fun.

Obj 2. A woman’s right to have control over her own body should also include taking the necessary measures to prevent unwanted pregnancies by the responsible use of contraception or, if contraceptive methods are not available, abstinence.

- Studies show that young people who are taught abstinence are actually at a HIGHER risk of unwanted pregnancy than those who are taught about contraception. Also, contraceptives can and do fail.
This objection also does nothing to address rape in all its forms.

Obj 3. Abortions themselves often cause psychological pain and stress and women who have them tend to regret it later in life.

A study from UC San Francisco shows that women denied abortions feel even more negative emotions as time passes than those who have abortions. Also, almost 90% of women who had abortions, even if they used the term "regret" to describe their emotions, also said they would do it again. This means they do not wish they could undo it type of regret, but instead regret that such action was necessary, but never-the-less feel it WAS necessary. So the vast majority, though they may feel some mild emotional distress near the event, do not in fact regret it.

Even more recent studies show that women, post abortion, suffer the same or LESS PTSD and depression that women in the general population. The evidence for the regret argument is thin.

Obj 4. There is no need to opt for such an unsafe and illegal procedure when the safer and more viable alternatives of adoption is a possibility.
The risk of serious medical complications during pregnancy and childbirth are much, much higher than the risks associated with abortion.
The risk of death associated with a full-term pregnancy and delivery is 8.8 deaths per 100,000, while the risk of death linked to legal abortion is 0.6 deaths per 100,000 women in the US.
Claiming that abortion is unsafe and that adoption (which presumes childbirth) is somehow safer is not just misleading, it is downright lying.

That's it for now. Devil
“Eternity is a terrible thought. I mean, where's it going to end?” 
― Tom StoppardRosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead
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