Abortion Essay

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  • Created by: 09grayn
  • Created on: 15-05-16 15:08
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  • Abortion
    • What is it?
      • Deliberate act of terminating a pregnancy (before 24 weeks)
      • Types: abortion pill, surgical dilation, suction method,    late abortion
      • The subject of abortion is very emotional and many people have conflicting views about it
      • Becoming more accepted in modern day society due to appearances in popular culture
        • Stacy had an Abortion in Eastenders in 2006
    • Laws
      • Current law allows abortions up to the 24th week of pregnancy, based on the Abortion Act of 1967
      • Must take place before viability; when a baby is able to live on its own outside the womb
        • Many Christians believe it should be reduced to 20 weeks as babies have been able to survive at this age
      • Abortions may be carried out if great risk is held  to the physical or mental health of the woman
      • Must be agreed by 2 doctos
      • Carried out by a doctor in a Government approved hospital
      • Currently illegal in the Republic of Ireland- hold Catholic Christian views
    • Backstreet Abortions
      • Those which are not carried out in a hospital or clinic
      • Can result in the death of women
      • The legislation of abortions is supported by many people- majority of abortions are carried out safely
      • Some argue abortions should not be legalized as it doesn't prevent dangerous backstreet abortions
    • When life begins
      • People believe in different stages of development and person-hood= difficult to determine when life begins
      • Some believe life begins at viabilty
        • Causes problems as medical knowledge advances- time of viability varies
      • Some believe life begins at time of quickening= when the foetus moves for the first time(16/17 weeks)
        • Causes issues as they occur at different times in each case
          • Some believe life begins when heartbeat can be detected
      • Some believe life begins when heartbeat can be detected
    • Aristotle's theory of life
      • Believed a male foetus became a life at 40 days of pregnancy
      • Female foetus becomes a life at  90 days
      • His suggestions though are purely random and illogical
      • No reason for males or females to obtain the rights to life at different times of development
    • Religious Views- life
      • Catholic View- life begins at the moment of conception
        • Catholic- from moment of conception= become a human being with potential rather than a potential human being
        • Catholics believe foetus is a living being- "You saw me before I was born."     -Bible
      • Some Christians believe life begins when the heart beats.
        • Christians interpret from the Bible. "For it is blood which maketh an atonement for the soul"
      • Islamic View-proposes that personhood is deemed appropriate at the stage of ensoulment (120days)
    • Sanctity of Life
      • THE PRINCIPLE that every person is a sacred child of God, created in his image by him                                          Therefore, only God himself may decide when a persons life may end
      • Many Catholics against abortions as it is against the will of God to take a life
        • "You shall not murder"
      • Many Christians regards humans to have likeliness of God and to bet set apart apart other creatures as stewards
        • "So God created man in his own image"
      • Some Muslims follow similar teaching that only Allah decides when life ends
        • Qur'an- "It is He who gives life and causes death"
      • Others believe the principle to be wrong as it cannot be applied to all situations
    • Quality of Life
      • Abortion may be accepted if it may result in an unacceptable quality of life for the child               E.g.             physical handicaps, genetic problems, mental defects
      • Some Christians believe the quality of life should not be assessed on the persons health but their relationship with God
      • Qur'an does not specifically refer to abortion  but offers guidance to related matters
        • Qur'an- "Kill not your offspring in fear of poverty"
    • Utlitarianism
      • Generally supportive of pro-choice views as these can be justified by Jeremy Bentham's Hedonic Calculus
      • Basing actions on those which produce the most happiness
      • John Calvin proposes that abortion is unethical
        • "the foetus is already a human being"
        • Would seem more horrible to kill a man in his own home than in a field because his home is his own secure refuge
          • Aborting a foetus inside the womb is more damaging than outside the womb
    • Peter Singer
      • "the life of a new-born is less value than the life of a pig" because human babies are not born self aware- so cant be classed as a person
      • Until a baby is capable of self-awareness, there is no reason not to kill it
        • He states no difference between abortion and infanticide
    • Salvation Army
      • Consider a person to be of infinite value and a sacred gift from God, therefore believing in the sanctity of life from the moment of conception
      • Aim o protect the rights of both the moth and the foetus therefore accpeting abortion in limited cirmumstance
      • Prefer to avoid abrtions
      • Advise counselling if there is an unwanted pregnancy to accept the situation
      • If a mother doe decide to have an abortion, they will offer pastoral care
    • Doctors Views
      • Many are starting to become unacceoting of abortions
      • Late-term abortions make doctors feel angry
        • Many doctors show symptons of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
          • Such as:                  Obsessive thinking about the abortion, depression, fatigue, anger, lower self esteem
      • USA-rising shortage of younger doctors willing to do abortions
    • Negative Effects
      • Can have damaging long term effects on the people involved
      • Can result in an infection in the womb and if left untreated can cause problems such as infertility and ectopic pregnancies
      • Can damage women's mental state causing issues such as:  anxiety, depression,, suicidal behavior post abortion an d issues with relationships and family
    • Michelle's Story
      • Woman living in USA shares her story of abortion and the effects it had on her life
      • Was 17 when she found out she was pregnant- questioned whether to have it and decided to abort
      • "I was never told how I would feel afterwards, the tremendous guilt and shame would stay with me for decades"
      • Found herself imaging the stages of pregnancy up to the time of birth
      • Became depressed and tormeneted by her choice
      • After 20 years, she decided to turn to religion where she found forgiveness and was set free from her guilt
    • Pro-Life
      • VIEW  which is opposing of abortion
      • Rights of an unborn child should be equal to the rights of the mother
      • Should not be aborted because of physical or mental defects- can still live a full and rewarding life
      • Unwanted babies could be adopted for families who are desparate for kids
      • Pro life campaigns such as 'Life' offer counselling and support for unplanned pregnancies, suffering the loss of a baby or coping after abortion
      • Educate people of their values and principles in a non-religious manner
      • "Every human individual is equally valuable from fertilisation"
    • Pro-Choice
      • IDEA of encouraging the legal right of a woman to chose whether or not she will have an abortion
      • In special circumstances such as rape, a woman should not be forced to have a baby as she did not chose to get pregnant- so should be allowed one
      • Every baby has the right to care and love- if this cannot be achieved then abortion should be accepted
      • NAF(National Abortion Federation) promoted women making own choices about reproductive health
        • They give information about abortion and alternative options
      • Dont intend to persuade- enforce freedom of choice
    • The Church
      • The CofE are against abortion due to the human duty of care for all life
      • However, there is an understanding that "the right choice is sometimes the acceptance of lesser evils"
        • Abortion may be accepted in particular circumstances where the consequences are deemed more evil than the act of abortion itself
      • Roman Catholic Church have stricter beliefs- abortion is always wrong as unborn baby is a sacred life- a sin to abort
      • Roman Catholic Church appear to have Rule Utilitarian way of deciding
      • CofE takes an Act Utilitarian approach where the consequences are taken into consideration
      • Early Methodist Church beliefs- abortion is always evil
        • Due to advances in medical science and social welfare, the Methodist Church can accept abortion like the CofE- when in the lesser evils

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