Abortion And Don Marquis Essay

1901 words - 8 pages

The issue of abortion is one that has some of societies most noted thinkers bewildered. The two sides of the argument are that of anti-abortionists and pro-choice. Those who agree with the pro-choice argument believe that a woman has the right to choose whether or not she has a baby or not, its her body. Anti-abortionists argue that the fetus has the right to life. Some debate whether or not the fetus is human and if it has the right to life as any, and every other human does. Don Marquis is one of those noted thinkers who argued that abortion is, with rare exceptions, seriously immoral.In his article, he ranks abortion in the same category as the killing of an innocent human being. He argues, "The effect of the loss of my biological life is the loss to me of all those activities, projects, experiences, and enjoyments which would otherwise have constituted my future personal life ... some parts of my future are not valued by me now, but will come to be valued be me as I grow older and as my values and capacities change." Of course, there are some instances where he believes abortions are morally permissible.Marquis states that there are certain issues that he will not address. He does agree that in the case of rape or when the life of the mother is at stake, that abortion is morally permissible. "Some anti-abortionists will allow that certain abortions, such as abortion before implantation or abortion when the life of the mother is threatened by a pregnancy or abortion after rape, may be morally permissible. This essay will not explore the casuistry of these hard cases." He agrees that abortion is a controversial issue.He agrees that there are certain issues in abortion that will simply lead to a standoff. He says that a typical anti-abortionist will argue that a fetus looks like a baby or that fetuses poses characteristics like other humans, such as a genetic code, which both make it both necessary and sufficient for the fetus to be considered a human being. The common answer to this (from the pro-choice view-point) is, "that fetuses are not persons or that fetuses are not rational agents or that fetuses are not social beings ... establishing any of theses claims is sufficient to show that an abortion is not a wrongful killing." There too are questions that will lead to standoffs.The question of the status of a fetus has always been put into question. This argument will simply lead to another standoff. Some contend that a fetus is a human being others disagree. Another issue of abortion that tends to lead to a standoff is the issues of what is a human begin. The anti-abortionist will keep their classification of killing a human being very general and claim that the taking of any human life is wrong. The pro-choice crowd will not be as general in their definition: "Being a person is what gives an individual intrinsic moral worth". To be sure that a fetus is not classified as a human being they will argue that, "it is only seriously prima facie...

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