Adverse Effects of Abortion
Abortion is a contentious issue with opposing opinions from different people. It is immoral because it eliminates the fetus’s life, destroys the body of the woman, and does more harm than good to the health and mental state of the woman. The act dispossesses the fetuses the right to life, which robs the world of its future generation. It creates a culture where life is disposable. The immoral act of termination of seeks to deny a fetus an opportunity to grow and become a member of society. It should be illegal because it is morally irresponsible and unethical. Most arguments about the morality of abortion are centred on whether the fetus has a moral right to life. The fetus grows to become a person, full of life, which makes abortion immoral; it is comparable to killing a person.
Moreover, the deliberate termination of a pregnancy has many disadvantages to the woman’s body and sanity while robbing the world of its future generation one by one. The assertion that all humans have the right to live regardless of culture, race, religion, age or gender is supportive enough to the immorality of abortion. The female body is faced with numerous risks brought by the procedure, from mental health problems to future childbearing issues. This essay will provide information on the advantages and disadvantages of abortion. Further, it will provide information on why the act is immoral and should be illegal. Debates on the morality of abortion is still ongoing in society. There are various claims in its favor, while different views are against it.
Claims in favor of abortion.
It is constitutionally allowed in the US, though its various states have restricted and limited its accessibility. Every state in the US has a minimum of one abortion clinic. The laws came to effect after the landmark case of Roe v. Wade in 1973. Due to its legality, the decision of abortion is left for the woman. The woman has the right to decide whether or not she will have an abortion since she carries the baby. It gives the woman the independence to have a choice over her reproduction and decide her future. It fronts a woman’s ability to contribute to economic and social life by determining her life’s path. The decision on whether to undergo an abortion thus rests with the woman.
It is argued that personhood starts after a fetus can survive outside the womb, not after conception. Since the fetus is dependable on the woman’s body, it can only be counted as a person after birth. The argument is that one’s age is considered after birth and not through pregnancy; hence abortion is seen as a termination of pregnancy and not the fetus. According to a report by Britain’s Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the fetus develops pain reception after 26 weeks. This is long after the abortion is done. The inability of the fetus to feel any pain is in support of abortion.
When abortions are performed legally and by professionals, it is safe. It reduces the risk of maternal injury and death, which are risks of illegal abortions. According to World Health Organization, 68,000 maternal deaths occur every year due to unsafe abortions. Legal and safe abortions mitigate health risks on the woman. Abortion decisions are inclined towards the educational or financial capacity of the woman or the family. The decisions are influenced by the women’s capacity to support the child. Some women undergo an abortion because they see it will interfere with their education or careers.
Claims against abortion
Abortions pose medical and health risks to the woman’s body—heavy and prolonged bleeding, followed by infection of the uterus Bento et al. (2020). Damage to the womb is another risk, which causes the weakening of the cervix. The weakening of the cervix puts the woman at another risk of upcoming pre-term deliveries and miscarriages. Incomplete abortions lead to complications and unwanted pregnancies. Abortions cause pain during intercourse and, in some worst cases, infertility. Abortion has psychological damage to the woman. Sullivan & de Faoite (2017) state that depression and anxiety are risks experienced in women who undergo an abortion. The two can lead to mental disorders or even suicide. The psychological damages push the women the woman to drug abuse and alcohol consumption. Another reason abortion is should not be legal is that it harbours a culture and belief where human life can be ended with another’s wish. The process devalues human life, rendering it disposable. Pope Francis spoke against the throwaway culture, where babies are disposed off like objects. Life is losing its meaning if the value of an unborn child is not considered life.
The fetus will develop and become a human being, and unborn babies are a human being. Life begins at conception, and the fetus’s growth is genetic and remains unaffected throughout its entire life. Henceforth, the fetus has a right to life and stopping the life of a human is immoral. It is also immoral to exterminate an unborn child as a method of contraception. In contrast to reports of the fetus not having any feelings, Kanwaljeet, a professor of Pediatrics at the University of Tennessee, says that fetus above 20 weeks feel pain. The abortion process is thus very painful and severe to the fetus. It is immoral to subject a living unborn baby to such pain. The choice of abortion brings stigmatization to the women—Society direct harsh criticism to members of the society who undergo an abortion states Hanschmidt et al (2016). Stigmatization from family and friends draws the woman towards depression, regret and drug abuse. The lack of support after abortion leaves women vulnerable to alienation and stress, which lowers self-esteem and participation in cultural activities. Various aspects are considered before an abortion; timing of the abortion which includes tracking the pregnancy, decision making and the arrangement of the abortion, are constraints that require accurate timing. Some women rush to do an abortion due to time constraints; such rush decisions may leave them with regret.
Another opposing reason to abortion is it ruins relationships in society; after abortion, things do not remain the same. Abortion also allows people to avoid their mistakes rather than face and solve them. It promotes irresponsibility in that it gives room for getting rid of the baby rather than stepping up and taking care of it—abortion has promoted sexual immorality. People sometimes engage in immoral sexual behaviours knowing there is abortion in case they mess up. The legality of abortion has led to the emergence of substandard abortion clinics, which do not offer professional assistance. Most of these clinics have led to the deaths of women seeking abortions.
Expert Opinion on abortion
Peter Marty (2019) writes that although there are debates on abortion, the better thing to do is formulate laws and regulations to ensure every child is born, fed, loved, secured and provided for. He states that regulators should work more towards enabling good public funding for health and schools. Life should be safeguarded and made easier through the effective infrastructure of public health and education, by these people will find a safe place to bear children. Good health and education infrastructure decrease cases of abortion by ensuring children are born into a secure, safe and productive environment. Peter Marty (2019) explains that during his interviews with women who had abortions, they did not wish the traumatic decision on abortion on anyone else. The pain management and side effects that come with abortion are immense and traumatic. Some women express regret and share they experienced depression and anxiety.
Bernstein & Manata (2019) state that a woman’s moral responsibility is to protect the fetus. Women have the right to choose abortion because it is their body, but it comes with the moral responsibility of enabling the fetus’s life. The authors believe every right has a responsibility. They argue that people should use contraceptives unless they are prepared to bring a child into the world. The authors explain that the fetus relies upon the woman’s body for its growth, and women have the right to decide whether to allow the growth. The fetus’s life depends on the mother, and she should offer assistance in making sure the life she carries sees the light of day. When women knowingly engage in activities that lead to conception, they are obligated to live with the risks it bears, the child. The authors argue against the killing of an innocent fetus, which came as an act by the women even after understanding their activities’ risks.
Abortion cannot be recommended based on disability or poverty, as Helen Alvaré (2016) dictates. She writes that poor women undertake fewer abortions than well-established counterparts. The notion of merciful abortion is false. Poverty-stricken areas receive huge amounts of dollar allocation for contraceptives. The government ensures that the areas receive education about contraceptives. Thus it is false to pin abortion on poverty. In cases of abortion coming from a foreseen disability of the child, the women have expressed regret. Therefore, there is no merciful abortion, whether it’s pushed by poverty or rendered to prevent giving birth to a child with a disability.
The morality of abortion is mostly based on the personhood of the fetus. Don Marquis (2007) argues that even though the fetus might not be considered a person, abortion is wrong since it denies the fetus a future to grow and develop to experience personhood. Perry Hendricks from Purdue University argues that exposing a fetus to fetal alcohol syndrome is immoral and unethical. Huge and excessive amounts of alcohol consumption pose cognitive and physical problems to the child. Henceforth, He acknowledges that after birth, the child will encounter problems like delayed educational progress. The delayed progress is a result of the huge and excessive alcohol intakes. Later in life, it may not be remembered as so; the disabilities may misinform other women into carrying out abortions when they learn of any sign of disability in the fetus. The argument that exposes the fetus to fetal alcohol syndrome is wrong and immoral, which may prompt abortion from other women.
Religious leaders like the Pope of the Catholic Church have spoken against abortion. The Pope encourages society to take the gift of life as a blessing from God. The aborted fetus is an innocent victims, whom we should be noble stewards of, but not masters to dictate their fate. Pope Francis observed that society could not protect helpless beings of nature but ignore the embryo’s protection, even when its presence is painful and brings problems. He regretted that there is a lack of respect for the right to life and to a natural death. During his address at the United States Congress, Pope Francis notes that life should be protected and defended in all its developmental stages. People should treat others how they would like to be treated. He called on activists and politicians protecting and fighting for environmental protection to avoid climate change to use the same stage to protect the life of the unborn. He expressed his regret of how life was disposable. One life should never be destroyed to save another, but all should be protected and defended.
Former President Donald Trump was against abortion. He vowed to overturn federal protections on abortion and enforce tough restrictions on abortion services. Trump suggested curtailing federal funds directed to promoting abortions. He was adamant of putting in place judges who would overturn the landmark ruling on the legality of abortion. Contrary, President Biden supports the right to choice by women choosing abortion. Biden vows to pass federal laws that protect women from having an abortion when they choose it. Politicians allied to the two share the same ideas as them.
The evidence and facts referenced in this article support that abortion is immoral and should be illegal. The risks and disadvantages brought by abortion are more than their benefits. A fetus has the right to life, and it is immoral and unethical to deny it a future. Abortion means killing life and terminating its development into the world. Life should be precious and not disposable like objects. It poses a lot of dangerous health hazards to the woman. Psychological and physical damage to the woman’s body that abortion brings is immense. Depression, anxiety and stigmatization are negative effects of abortion. Abortion goes against religious beliefs of being the stewards of life, but not masters who dictate when to terminate it. Ways of reducing abortions are not to formulate more aggressive rules but to provide necessary infrastructures that ensure children are born and bred in a safe and secure environment. Poverty eradication and education about contraceptives are better ways of encouraging good parenthood and society development. Life should be protected and defended against destruction, even that of the unborn. Society should seek for others what we seek for ourselves.