Is abortion murder or not?

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Kerrie

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Hurkyl said:
Let me give you an example of why I'm apparently confused about your posts:

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according to the U.S. laws, a fetus is not considered a U.S. citizen

american law has clearly defined that the woman has control of her body while pregant

remember hurkyl, you are assuming that life begins at conception and many hold a different opinion of this, especially the U.S. laws.

i never stated that the U.S. laws had the opinion [that life does not begin at conception]

the eyes of the law don't see the fetus as a human being
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a. The U.S. laws have not defined the fetus as an independent human being capable of sustaining independent life, and not a citizen granted the same equal rights men and women receive.
b. Thus, we can assume that the U.S. laws do not consider that human life begins at conception and voluntary abortion by the woman carrying the fetus is not considered murder by this definition.
c. The woman has been granted legal authority over the decisions to bear a child and will not suffer any prosecution of the law because the ruling of Roe vs. Wade has deemed her immediate privacy and safety above that of the termination of the fetus.
d. Should the woman's fetus be killed at the hands of another against her will, that other person could very well be tried for murder, depending on the circumstances. This is relatively new I believe.

Hopefully that doesn't confuse you. I know you are intelligent enough to interpret that for exactly what it means. When it comes to morals/values/beliefs, it becomes more of a challenge to clearly define what is and isn't like you can in with a subject like mathematics. I apologize for confusing you.

For the same reason I'm not arguing for my beliefs here: I don't have what I would consider a strong argument to back them up.
Perhaps my previous assumption that you are out to attack my beliefs was valid after all. You spent so much energy attacking mine, but then admit to this. What was your original intention then? Obviously you have strong feelings on the subject, so please do share them as freely as I have.
 

Hurkyl

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What was your original intention then?
I would consider the discussion a success if one of these things happen:

. I gain insight into some particular issue.
. I cause someone to become critical of their beliefs
. I cause someone to realize that they're preaching to the choir -- that their arguments are only valid to people who already share their beliefs.

And worthwhile if:

. I learn something. (done)
. I cause someone to admit that they don't have a strong, rational reason for one of their beliefs.

(These lists not exhaustive)
(Admittedly, I sometimes get carried away with arguing for its own sake and lose sight of my goals)


I think that I mainly aim for the "preaching to the choir" bullet on abortion topics -- it irritates me to no end to see pro-choicers say "Because it's not a life, ..." and then see pro-lifers say "Because it is a life, ...", and watch both sides repeatedly butt heads on whatever topic over which they're arguing, rather than acknowledge the fundamental difference in their positions.

As an example, the argument "Abortion should be okay/legal/moral/whatever because it improves the safety of mothers" isn't very helpful to someone isn't already convinced that the baby does not have a right to life.


However, you seem to have a fairly nontrivial stance that I think would be worth probing, if I could get straight answers to my questions. If someone held a gun to my head and asked me for my best guess as to your position, I would say:

You don't believe the baby is a human being until birth.
You believe the baby has right to life, because it's not a human being.
You have little to no problem with abortion anytime before the baby starts moving.
You are iffy, but tolerant, once the baby has started moving, up until the time it would be viable outside the womb.
*You are against the termination of the pregnancy once the baby would be viable outside the womb.
You believe that the slaughter of the baby counts as murder, at least once it's started moving.


There are several apparent contradictions here -- any of them could cause the discussion to be a success.

I'm still unsure about the starred item -- if it's true, I was actually looking forward to drilling you about how you would justify your position, since it would be something new for me, and sounds fruitful.
 
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Kerrie

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Hurkyl said:
You are iffy, but tolerant, once the baby has started moving, up until the time it would be viable outside the womb.
*You are against the termination of the pregnancy once the baby would be viable outside the womb.
You believe that the slaughter of the baby counts as murder, at least once it's started moving.
I will address these three points you made.
1. You are right, I personally am iffy of women who decide to abort after the 1st trimester (12 weeks) because, even if she found out a little later then normal, there is enough time to make the choice within that 1st trimester. During that 1st trimester, there maybe symptoms of nausea, fatigue, and other little changes, but certainly not movement that can be felt. Once she has passed that 1st trimester, that fetus has developed most of their organs, bones, and is beginning to take real shape. She is well aware she is pregnant (in most cases), and in my personal opinion has plenty of opportunity to excercise her choice.

Note: Many pregnancies end in miscarriage on their own. Here is a blurb from the March of Dimes website:

A miscarriage can be an intensely sad and frightening experience. A pregnancy that had seemed normal suddenly ends, leaving expectant parents devastated. About 15 percent of recognized pregnancies end this way. Miscarriage is pregnancy loss that occurs before 20 weeks, before the fetus is able to survive outside the womb. Most miscarriages occur in the first trimester or 12 weeks of pregnancy. As many as 50 percent of all pregnancies may end in miscarriage, because many losses occur before a woman realizes she is pregnant.
You can visit this link for more information about the first trimester miscarriages, they are very common.

2. I am against the termination of the pregnancy once the baby is able to survive adequately outside the womb, and that is typically around 6 months gestation. Earlier then that, the baby will have some severe health problems. At this point, plenty of tests and labwork has been done to determine for disease and deformities or if the fetus would be a threat to the mother's own life, thus a woman deciding to terminate at this point is just plain horrible in my opinion. I really doubt however that this scenario is all that common. Most women abort before the 12 weeks, some just a little bit later.

3. I am assuming you mean "slaughter" as in if another person commits a crime against the mother and her fetus? Yes, I believe this is totally wrong because it ultimately interferes with her choice of bearing that child.
 
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Hurkyl

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I am assuming you mean "slaughter" as in if another person commits a crime against the mother and her fetus? Yes, I believe this is totally wrong because it ultimately interferes with her choice of bearing that child.
I'm still trying to decide upon a good verb. :frown: Mainly, I'm trying not to use anything that would imply the baby has a life (such as a "killing"). I would also like to intend that the crime have as little impact on the mother as possible: it just terminates the baby. (I guess "to terminate" is probably the word I want)


I would certainly agree that the act is wrong. Arguing from the position that the baby is still part of the mother, I think it would at least be described as an assault or a mutilation. However, at the moment, from this position I cannot devise an argument that would allow me to call it murder. (which is why I find this particular combination of stances interesting)



I am against the termination of the pregnancy once the baby is able to survive adequately outside the womb
Similarly for this particular position. The only premise from which I am able to devise an argument that would support your position is one where the baby ceases to be considered a part of the mother at this point. I guess that's slightly different than considering the baby a human being at this point -- I would have used the phrases interchangably.


Basically, I am unable to devise a logical argument against abortion, except in the case where the baby is considered to have its own life.
 

selfAdjoint

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How about aggravated maiming?
 

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