On one side,
“Why do you like to kill babies?”
On the other,
“Why are you trying to control my body?”
Yes, the abortion debate is filled with white-hot rhetoric by all sides.
Endless red herring questions are thrown out, along with other logical fallacies including the slippery slope and ad hominem (the shift of subject to the character of the person). From print media to social media, the topic boils over till all that is left is anger, spite, and sometimes hatred.
Given that this issue has now become the center of most political debate makes it much worse. For is there anything more divisive in America and the west than politics?
But, there really is only one question that needs to be asked in the abortion debate.
While some will tell you that it is complex and nuanced, I would suggest those are distractions. Yes, there are big issues that need addressed concerning human behavior, but abortion itself is only complex if you ignore this question. The answer to this question settles the matter to one side or the other.
And that question is:
If the unborn is not a human being, then there are no arguments needed against the idea of abortion. It should be legal and be left to the autonomous decision making of the woman involved based on the advice she receives from her chosen healthcare providers.
But if the unborn is a human being, then there are zero reasons for abortion to be legal or morally acceptable, because it is the ending of a human being’s life without input from that human being.
Before we ask the question,
I want you to objectively consider these questions concerning human beings.
Is there ever a time where it is morally correct for:
For one human being to take the life of another human being based on race, ethnicity, gender, or age?
For a doctor to violate his oath and do nothing to save a human being’s life?
For one human being to decide that another human being’s life may be terminated without the consent of that human being (prior or otherwise), when that human being has a life to live?
For a human being in need of care to be abandoned by another human being because the task is going to cause hardship?
For the life of a human being to be terminated based on their location?
For the life of a human being to be terminated because of any lack in physical or mental ability?
For one human being to own another human being, and have complete control over their life or death?
While we could go on, it should be easy to see that none of these scenarios are morally acceptable. The right to life and liberty for all human beings are God-given and inalienable; no one has the authority to take them from you (unless you have willingly relinquished your individual right by violating another human beings right to life or liberty- that is by taking the life of or liberty from another human being).
So, if the unborn is not a human being, then NONE of these questions or scenarios apply. But, if the unborn is a human being, then it should be illegal and considered a violation of all rights to perform an abortion on the unborn. Thus, this one question defines the actual debate.
Is the unborn a human being?
There is overwhelming support for affirming the fact that the unborn is a human being. Consider the following 3 examples of the multiple lines of evidence affirming the humanity of the unborn:
All human beings since the dawn of time have given birth to human beings. Thus, if at birth ‘the born’ are human beings, it is certain that prior to birth ‘the unborn’ are human beings too.
Embryologists confirm the fact that the unborn are human beings: “Human development begins at fertilization, the process during which a male gamete or sperm … unites with a female gamete or oocyte … to form a single cell called a zygote. This highly specialized, totipotent cell marks the beginning of each of us as a unique individual.”- The Developing Human: Clinically Oriented Embryology, Keith Moore and T.V.N. Persaud
Even human interest pieces in the mass media recognize that the unborn are human beings. Consider this recent article from the Washington Post (a media outlet that isn’t known for a pro-life position): “A pregnant woman with Covid-19 was dying. With one decision, her doctor saved three lives”- Now, it is important to note that the article’s headline implies that the unborn in the scenario are human beings whose lives are worth saving.
There are many other lines of evidence that suggest that the unborn are human beings, but these three cover the realms of common sense, the scientific, and the existential.
Now, it is possible that one may argue for abortion based on size, level of development, viability, physical capability, or other reasons which are arbitrarily assigned. But none of these are morally appropriate for taking the life of a born human being, therefore, they are just as inappropriate for an unborn human being.
Given the evidence that the unborn are human, and the unholy amount of abortions that occur every day, then abortion is the greatest human rights violation in the history of mankind! Once again, the question you have to ask yourself is: are the unborn human beings? The only reasonable and logical answer is, yes. Now we need to do something about it!