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Is abortion wrong?

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Featured Article: Philosophical Analysis of Abortion, The Right to Life, and Murder
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Fdesilva
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Re: Is abortion wrong?

Post by Fdesilva » January 9th, 2019, 2:36 am

LuckyR wrote:
January 8th, 2019, 4:36 am
Fdesilva wrote:
January 8th, 2019, 2:50 am


From the above would I be right in inferring that abortion in your opinion is wrong after a level of development? For example a nervous system has come into place?
If so then you do have love for the fetus and that is great and wonderful. However where I live abortion is now ok right upto 9 months.
https://www.theguardian.com/australia-n ... e-abortion


While I don't agree with abortion at any stage, I will hold my opinion on why that is the case until I know your take on the above.
Perhaps arithmetic is not your strong suit, but 22 weeks is not 9 months.

Just sayin'
Its allowed up to any stage as stated here https://www.childrenbychoice.org.au/fac ... bortionlaw
"Abortion is now removed from the criminal code and will be available on request as a health service up until 22 weeks gestation. Thereafter the involved medical practitioner must consult another medical practitioner who also considers that, in all the circumstances, the termination should be performed."

Steve3007
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Re: Is abortion wrong?

Post by Steve3007 » January 9th, 2019, 5:52 am

Fdesilva wrote:Its allowed up to any stage as stated here https://www.childrenbychoice.org.au/fac ... bortionlaw
"Abortion is now removed from the criminal code and will be available on request as a health service up until 22 weeks gestation. Thereafter the involved medical practitioner must consult another medical practitioner who also considers that, in all the circumstances, the termination should be performed."
I personally disagree with anyone who says that a newly fertilised single-celled embryo ought to be afforded the same rights as a fully formed human being, but I also disagree with anyone who says that a 7, 8 or 9 month old unborn baby should be afforded no rights and can be aborted. The exception to this rule would be if there was a clear cut dilemma between saving the life of the mother and the life of the baby.

It is my view that abortion should be legal up until a particular number of weeks of gestation and that the number of weeks should be before the stage where the baby could survive, in an incubator, outside the womb. If the baby can survive then I believe the method of removing it from the mother should be attempted delivery, not abortion.

The difficult question is deciding on that number of weeks. Advances in technology mean that survival at earlier and earlier stages becomes possible. In the limit, there is no obvious fundamental technical reason why future technology wouldn't allow the whole of gestation, from fertilisation to 9 months, to happen outside the womb. Brave New World style. Whether we want that to happen is a different matter. But if it did, I wonder what our attitudes towards the "abortion" of such a developing embryo/foetus might be then, when there would no longer be a process of birth by which an unborn baby becomes a born baby.

As I've said, I don't think there are any objectively true answers to these difficult questions of the rights of, and our obligations towards, developing humans at various stages. Many past societies, including the ancestors of our own societies, have not even regarded newborn babies, 9 months plus, as having full rights. I think the rapid reduction of infant mortality due to modern medicine and the reduction in family sizes has been a factor in changing this and in making almost everyone in modern societies like ours agree that, at least once born, a baby has the same rights to life and protection from harm as an adult. But it wasn't always so.

Steve3007
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Re: Is abortion wrong?

Post by Steve3007 » January 9th, 2019, 6:01 am

For similar reasons, I don't think there are any objectively true answers to the difficult questions of the rights of, and our obligations towards, various species of non-human animals.

Just as most people would instinctively want to protect an 8 month unborn baby more than a newly fertilised singled-celled human embryo, I think most people would instinctively want to offer more protection to a chimpanzee than to a bacterium. Or to a dog than to a spider. These extremes are easy to judge. It's when you move the two points on the continuum of living things closer and closer together that it gets difficult. It's also complicated by our cultural habits of eating some animals but not others. So most people, in our particular culture, are, I presume, more willing to protect a dog than a cow.

Fdesilva
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Re: Is abortion wrong?

Post by Fdesilva » January 9th, 2019, 9:47 pm

Steve3007 wrote:
January 8th, 2019, 7:49 am
There are 7+ billion human beings on this planet and the number increases every day by more than the total number of living individuals in the populations of all the other Great Apes combined. In the foreseeable future there is no possibility whatever of the next generation of humans failing to materialise. Birth control and management of the global human population is the most important factor in lessening the devastating impact that the human race is having on global biodiversity. We are well on the way to destroying almost all species that we do not regard as being directly useful to us, simply as a result of our vast numbers demanding the land on which they live for our own use. In my view, of all the massive problems facing the human race, the destruction of non-sentient single celled embryos is absolutely not one of them. Clearly you disagree. That is your right. Fortunately for the other species of life on this planet, I think you're in a minority.
As you know from evolutions species come and go. As such if humans overpopulate and destroy to many species just like the dinosaur humans would become extinct. Sure given is knowledge about biodiversity as rational creatures we must work towards preserving this diversity and our self, however allowing abortion with the hope that it will keep the population under control is a backhanded way of trying to achieve and end. If someone does not want to have a child because of the impact the child will have on the population, then they should get themselves sterilised. It is ridiculous to create foetus and keep aborting them. Most people if not all agree that no human has the right to destroy the life of another other than in self defence. The many like you who think it ok to abort a foetus do so in the firm “Belief” that a foetus is not a fully formed human. You look at the cells at a given time and infer that this lump of cells is no different to a lump of cancer cells and as such its ok to abort. However, I guess, you will agree that a human that is severely handicap should be given every assistance possible to go on living. The reason most people unlike the Natzi will not advocate killing the handicap is because they believe that what makes a human is not their individual ability but their consciousness. So going back to the foetus the reason for some to consider it ok to abort is not the fact that the foetus has no hand, legs brain etc but rather the “belief” that no brain implies no consciousness. Do you agree?
However if you have been studying the findings on consciousness to many scientist it still remains a mystery. Now given that we give the benefit of the doubt when it comes to putting some one in prison, should we not give the benefit of the doubt to the lump of cells as it may be consciousness just like some brain dead people who report they were locked in on waking up?

Secondly as you can see allowing abortion at a given stage has lead in Australia to allowing it at all stages. Compare this with say smoking. At one time we did not know that smoking led to cancer but now that we do, everybody is discouraged from smoking. In the same way it may have been ok to allow abortion for a few weeks thinking it will never be allowed beyond that. However given that this assumption is not valid, that allowing abortion for a few weeks eventually results in abortion at all stages should you not consider it wrong at any stage, as smoking one cigarette may not do you harm but if it is inevitable that smoking one will lead to making a person a chain smoker, its best not to smoke at all. On this note, it is a fact that in Australia there is even a Olympic athlete who had abortions from time to time that ended up killing her baby soon after it was born. This is what I mean.

Sorry if I am cherry picking what I respond to. Unfortunately time is not my best friend.

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Re: Is abortion wrong?

Post by Felix » January 10th, 2019, 12:07 am

Its allowed up to any stage as stated here https://www.childrenbychoice.org.au/fac ... bortionlaw
"Abortion is now removed from the criminal code and will be available on request as a health service up until 22 weeks gestation. Thereafter the involved medical practitioner must consult another medical practitioner who also considers that, in all the circumstances, the termination should be performed."
The word "thereafter" refers to the request for an abortion before 22 weeks, i.e., after the request has been submitted, a second professional opinion must be made. And 22 weeks is well short of the third trimester of pregnancy.

The rest of your post is a bit too incoherent to merit a reply.
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Fdesilva
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Re: Is abortion wrong?

Post by Fdesilva » January 10th, 2019, 4:26 pm

Felix wrote:
January 10th, 2019, 12:07 am
Its allowed up to any stage as stated here https://www.childrenbychoice.org.au/fac ... bortionlaw
"Abortion is now removed from the criminal code and will be available on request as a health service up until 22 weeks gestation. Thereafter the involved medical practitioner must consult another medical practitioner who also considers that, in all the circumstances, the termination should be performed."
The word "thereafter" refers to the request for an abortion before 22 weeks, i.e., after the request has been submitted, a second professional opinion must be made. And 22 weeks is well short of the third trimester of pregnancy.

The rest of your post is a bit too incoherent to merit a reply.
Here is the QLD goernment link
https://www.qld.gov.au/health/children/ ... -pregnancy

It states
"A termination of pregnancy is a medical procedure that is performed to end a pregnancy.
Deciding to end a pregnancy is a personal decision, which can be made for a range of reasons. Up to 22 weeks, a woman can request a termination of pregnancy for any reason. After 22 weeks, 2 doctors must agree the termination is appropriate in the circumstances."

Here is the checklist for the doctor
https://clinicalexcellence.qld.gov.au/s ... cklist.pdf
It states

A medical practitioner (Treating Medical Practitioner) may perform a termination on a woman who is more than 22 weeks pregnant if –

This is the case in nearly all sustralian states except one. I live here.

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Re: Is abortion wrong?

Post by Socrates_2 » January 14th, 2019, 12:16 am

Abortion is wrong, morally. There is no real question about that. You wouldn't recommend getting an abortion to a family member. Some will say that it is just a clump of cells in the early weeks of the first trimester, but this is a clump of cells with an unimaginable amount of potential. I could cut off my finger and say, 'this is just a clump of cells' and I would be right. But there is an astronomical difference between my severed finger and a fertilized egg cell in the womb of a woman. My poor appendage will never, ever become anything more than the clump of cells that it is. The finger has become a useless piece of living and soon to be dead matter that will never again grow or serve any real concious purpose. To call a human embryo a simple clump of cells is an oversimplification that has abhorrent implications, and I hope for the sake of the millions of unborn that may be aborted we are not about to overlook it. Babies in the womb of a pregnant woman, during whatever stage of growth, are part of the most essential process to mankind, reproduction. Whether they are a mass of brainless cells or a baby to be birthed the next day, they have unimaginable potential to be fulfilled in their lives. When you murder a five year old, you completely eradicate his chances of living an independent adult life and playing his part in societal development. When you abort a cellular mass inside a womb, the only place a human child can be conceived, you are extinguishing the small flame of human life that might one day ignite their family, country or even the world with a burning fire of human passion. That small clump of cells is unlike any other, in that it will be, given the chance, a human life. A human life that might cure cancer. A human life that might unite a country and end a civil war. A human that might eradicate poverty as we did polio, many years ago. But wait, you say. This human life could also grow up to be a dictator, and possibly kill thousands of people in cold blood. This life could kill another, and ruin their chances of realizing their potential. Even if Hitler, Stalin, and Lee Harvey Oswald were once unborn children, no righteous human mind would kill an embryo by the chances of it becoming tyrannical, pathological or murderous, because that is an action with no justifiable basis, making it murder. The temperament and moral compass of the child will be determined by it's post birth growth and education.
The title 'a clump of cells' can be compared to a name. Let's say a newborn was given the name Lucas. It could easily have also been named Jonah, an equally valid title because the baby has not yet done anything of significance to make its name unique. But let's say Lucas is reading the newspaper by his 18th month out of the hospital. Now you can't call this child Jonah, because only Lucas himself has accomplished this feat. Skip ahead 15 years, and Lucas breaks the world record for the most Pi digits memorized. These things are now contingent to Lucas' identity. It is the same thing with a clump of cells. When the egg is fertilized, it begins the journey to birth. So then at what point does that clump of cells become human? The real answer is the moment the egg is fertilized, and the human DNA begins to grow and change and shape the baby. Abortion is, in fact, worse than murdering a five year old because regardless of whether they feel it or not the chance to fulfill their purpose in life is gone, and they will never experience human existence. Perhaps unwanted babies can feel to be burdensome or annoying to the parents, and perhaps the feeling of being a child who was a mistake is a saddening and deeply painful. But unwanted children should take pride in their parents, whoever they might be. And to those who fathered and mothered babies they wished had not been conceived, I have this to say. It is difficult enough to give birth to and raise a baby you wanted when it was concieved. So I commend those who persevered against their convenience and their will to not abort a child. They are some of the noblest people in our society.

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Re: Is abortion wrong?

Post by LuckyR » January 14th, 2019, 1:28 am

Socrates_2 wrote:
January 14th, 2019, 12:16 am
Abortion is wrong, morally. There is no real question about that. You wouldn't recommend getting an abortion to a family member. Some will say that it is just a clump of cells in the early weeks of the first trimester, but this is a clump of cells with an unimaginable amount of potential. I could cut off my finger and say, 'this is just a clump of cells' and I would be right. But there is an astronomical difference between my severed finger and a fertilized egg cell in the womb of a woman. My poor appendage will never, ever become anything more than the clump of cells that it is. The finger has become a useless piece of living and soon to be dead matter that will never again grow or serve any real concious purpose. To call a human embryo a simple clump of cells is an oversimplification that has abhorrent implications, and I hope for the sake of the millions of unborn that may be aborted we are not about to overlook it. Babies in the womb of a pregnant woman, during whatever stage of growth, are part of the most essential process to mankind, reproduction. Whether they are a mass of brainless cells or a baby to be birthed the next day, they have unimaginable potential to be fulfilled in their lives. When you murder a five year old, you completely eradicate his chances of living an independent adult life and playing his part in societal development. When you abort a cellular mass inside a womb, the only place a human child can be conceived, you are extinguishing the small flame of human life that might one day ignite their family, country or even the world with a burning fire of human passion. That small clump of cells is unlike any other, in that it will be, given the chance, a human life. A human life that might cure cancer. A human life that might unite a country and end a civil war. A human that might eradicate poverty as we did polio, many years ago. But wait, you say. This human life could also grow up to be a dictator, and possibly kill thousands of people in cold blood. This life could kill another, and ruin their chances of realizing their potential. Even if Hitler, Stalin, and Lee Harvey Oswald were once unborn children, no righteous human mind would kill an embryo by the chances of it becoming tyrannical, pathological or murderous, because that is an action with no justifiable basis, making it murder. The temperament and moral compass of the child will be determined by it's post birth growth and education.
The title 'a clump of cells' can be compared to a name. Let's say a newborn was given the name Lucas. It could easily have also been named Jonah, an equally valid title because the baby has not yet done anything of significance to make its name unique. But let's say Lucas is reading the newspaper by his 18th month out of the hospital. Now you can't call this child Jonah, because only Lucas himself has accomplished this feat. Skip ahead 15 years, and Lucas breaks the world record for the most Pi digits memorized. These things are now contingent to Lucas' identity. It is the same thing with a clump of cells. When the egg is fertilized, it begins the journey to birth. So then at what point does that clump of cells become human? The real answer is the moment the egg is fertilized, and the human DNA begins to grow and change and shape the baby. Abortion is, in fact, worse than murdering a five year old because regardless of whether they feel it or not the chance to fulfill their purpose in life is gone, and they will never experience human existence. Perhaps unwanted babies can feel to be burdensome or annoying to the parents, and perhaps the feeling of being a child who was a mistake is a saddening and deeply painful. But unwanted children should take pride in their parents, whoever they might be. And to those who fathered and mothered babies they wished had not been conceived, I have this to say. It is difficult enough to give birth to and raise a baby you wanted when it was concieved. So I commend those who persevered against their convenience and their will to not abort a child. They are some of the noblest people in our society.
A completely reasonable, though less popular opinion (in the west). This reasoning makes a great case for an individual to choose not to terminate a pregnancy, though is utterly unconvincing to the majority to make public policy.
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Re: Is abortion wrong?

Post by Steve3007 » January 14th, 2019, 6:09 am

Socrates_2 wrote:...Some will say that it is just a clump of cells in the early weeks of the first trimester, but this is a clump of cells with an unimaginable amount of potential...
Your position appears to be that it is the potential that makes the act morally wrong. Why? Do you consider it to be a moral axiom that the destruction of anything that has the potential to become something good is morally wrong? If so, this seems odd to me. If I had to think of a moral axiom then the one that springs most naturally to mind is the prevention of the suffering and promotion of the contentment and fulfilment of sentient beings. Killing a child, and thereby removing their potential to become an adult and experience a full life, is wrong because the removal of that potential causes suffering.

A newly fertilised embryo has the potential to become a sentient being with hopes and dreams; a human. But that's only if kept under certain carefully controlled conditions (in the womb). Likewise, a sperm cell and an ovum have the potential to become a sentient being with hopes and dreams, but only if kept under certain conditions. Is it just as wrong to destroy the latter potential as to destroy the former? If not, why not? Neither a sperm cell, an ovum nor a newly fertilised human embryo have the ability to experience joy and suffering. They all have the potential to grow into something that can experience joy and suffering, do they not?

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Re: Is abortion wrong?

Post by Socrates_2 » January 14th, 2019, 11:41 pm

Point being, those who give a zygote the title 'clump of cells' are drastically oversimplifying that cellular mass. There is an indisputable reality separating embryos and any old clump of cells. In 9 months, a baby will be birthed from the womb of the mother, a living, breathing human being. They are both cells, and yet one of them has the chance to live a meaningful existence. You can say they won't feel an abortion, but is it really any different compared to poisoning someone in their sleep? You take enough precautions, make enough excuses, so that people will believe what you did was right, and your victim will die painlessly in the night. They will fall asleep and never experience the morning, never see another sunrise. Is aborting a baby really that different?
I postulate the answer is no.
Because although it is painless, that person who you poisoned is now dead, murdered, gone. Is that not a monstrous tragedy? Is that not something to mourn?
I postulate the answer is yes.
And a baby who is aborted, is their fate not even worse? Is it not a much more tragedic situation? Because that embryo, zygote, baby, whatever will never experience a sunset, sunrise, or anything beautiful or meaningful in its life.
One more thing. The reason I value a fertilized embryo over the individual sperm, ovum etcetera is because the genetic material for the individual has now been gathered and amalgamated to create the human who will develop. Only one sperm, of 300 million, makes it to the egg first, and after crossing over has occured, the zygote is now a unique human being in development. Particularly after intercourse has been performed, the reproductive act of the human race. The parents must now recognize that, whether they are willing or not, they have a responsibility to nourish and grow a healthy baby and human being, because they participated in the act that brings them forth into the world.

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Re: Is abortion wrong?

Post by LuckyR » January 15th, 2019, 4:56 am

Socrates_2 wrote:
January 14th, 2019, 11:41 pm
Point being, those who give a zygote the title 'clump of cells' are drastically oversimplifying that cellular mass. There is an indisputable reality separating embryos and any old clump of cells. In 9 months, a baby will be birthed from the womb of the mother, a living, breathing human being. They are both cells, and yet one of them has the chance to live a meaningful existence. You can say they won't feel an abortion, but is it really any different compared to poisoning someone in their sleep? You take enough precautions, make enough excuses, so that people will believe what you did was right, and your victim will die painlessly in the night. They will fall asleep and never experience the morning, never see another sunrise. Is aborting a baby really that different?
I postulate the answer is no.
Because although it is painless, that person who you poisoned is now dead, murdered, gone. Is that not a monstrous tragedy? Is that not something to mourn?
I postulate the answer is yes.
And a baby who is aborted, is their fate not even worse? Is it not a much more tragedic situation? Because that embryo, zygote, baby, whatever will never experience a sunset, sunrise, or anything beautiful or meaningful in its life.
One more thing. The reason I value a fertilized embryo over the individual sperm, ovum etcetera is because the genetic material for the individual has now been gathered and amalgamated to create the human who will develop. Only one sperm, of 300 million, makes it to the egg first, and after crossing over has occured, the zygote is now a unique human being in development. Particularly after intercourse has been performed, the reproductive act of the human race. The parents must now recognize that, whether they are willing or not, they have a responsibility to nourish and grow a healthy baby and human being, because they participated in the act that brings them forth into the world.
In your personal opinion, what (if anything) should decide the fate of unused frozen embryos (left over from infertility work)?
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Re: Is abortion wrong?

Post by Steve3007 » January 15th, 2019, 11:50 am

LuckyR to Socrates_2:
In your personal opinion, what (if anything) should decide the fate of unused frozen embryos (left over from infertility work)?
Yes, that's an interesting one. My own two children were conceived using IVF. As I recall, a total of eight fertilised embryos were created. Two of those were re-implanted in the womb for the first round. We nicknamed them Ren and Stimpy. Ren didn't survive. Stimpy went on to become our first child. (We didn't call him Stimpy after he was born). The other fertilised embryos were frozen and then, a couple of years later, two more were defrosted and re-implanted. Again, only one survived to become our second child. The remaining fertilised embryos were destroyed.

According to Socrates_2's moral code, we and the doctors who helped us are morally equivalent to multiple murderers. The curious thing is that we don't feel like multiple murderers. Although I can't be sure of that because I don't know for sure what actual multiple murderers feel like. I can only guess. We felt no loss or regret whatsoever at the destruction of those embryos or at the loss of those (such as Ren) that failed to re-implant successfully.

It seems to me that how one chooses to interpret that fact depends on one's attitude towards morality in general. A person who is a moral absolutist might perhaps regard our actions as morally abhorrent in an absolute sense and our lack of remorse as due to the fact that we've been conditioned by society to turn a blind eye to various kinds of absolute evils. A similar thing could be said by, for example, moral absolutist vegetarians who believe that "meat is murder" but that people are conditioned by society to accept it as morally acceptable.

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Re: Is abortion wrong?

Post by Steve3007 » January 15th, 2019, 12:10 pm

Socrates_2 wrote:The reason I value a fertilized embryo over the individual sperm, ovum etcetera is because the genetic material for the individual has now been gathered and amalgamated to create the human who will develop. Only one sperm, of 300 million, makes it to the egg first, and after crossing over has occured, the zygote is now a unique human being in development.
I take your point. Yet the curious fact remains that even though me and my partner knew that this process of combining our genetic material had already occured in all eight of our fertilised embryos, there really was not the slightest sense in which we yet saw them as human beings. That sense of humanity grew gradually as the two surviving embryos developed into what are now our two children. It didn't happen suddenly. It happened by degrees. Obviously it eventually reached the point where death of or harm to either of our children would be utterly devastating to us. I suspect this is generally the way of things. For example, I have observed and experienced that when a miscarriage occurs the would-be mother feels a greater sense of loss and trauma the later the stage of embryonic/foetal development. In general, very early stage miscarriages don't often cause lasting emotional distress.

This brings me to the question of how we approach a discussion about a moral issue like this and how we decide what is morally right and what is morally wrong. It seems to me that there are two distinct types of discussion about moral rules. We can attempt to describe or we can attempt to prescribe. Above, I have been attempting to describe. Socrates_2 has proposed what looks approximately like a moral axiom. I have tried to see whether the conclusions that flow from this axiom appear to match the actual moral behaviours of real people. I don't think that they generally do.

If we were moral absolutists and we proposed that there is an objectively existing moral principle that the destruction of a newly fertilised embryo is morally equivalent to the killing of a child, we would be faced with the problem of explaining why it doesn't intuitively feel that way to the vast majority of people. Are the vast majority of people simply wrong on this issue? Ought we to conclude that the vast majority of people are cold, psychopathic monsters, as we would of a person who killed a child without emotion?

That would surely be an odd conclusion.

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Re: Is abortion wrong?

Post by Socrates_2 » January 15th, 2019, 7:35 pm

Yet the curious fact remains that even though me and my partner knew that this process of combining our genetic material had already occured in all eight of our fertilised embryos, there really was not the slightest sense in which we yet saw them as human beings. That sense of humanity grew gradually as the two surviving embryos developed into what are now our two children. It didn't happen suddenly. It happened by degrees. Obviously it eventually reached the point where death of or harm to either of our children would be utterly devastating to us. I suspect this is generally the way of things. For example, I have observed and experienced that when a miscarriage occurs the would-be mother feels a greater sense of loss and trauma the later the stage of embryonic/foetal development. In general, very early stage miscarriages don't often cause lasting emotional distress.
I would expect that, as a pregnant woman spends more and more time with the baby in her womb, it gains more value and meaning as it comes to resemble a human baby. Spending every hour of every day with its presence would likely make a woman care more and feel more attached to her child. In an earlier post I mentioned how the name of a person becomes central part of their identity after they have accomplished and done things that become unique to their name (relative to the people around them and those who matter to them). It is a similar situation in the case of fertilized genetic material. You stated that, when your genetic material was amalgamated, you did not feel in the slightest sense a human connection to the embryo. Although this makes sense, given it resembles nothing remotely similar to a human being, the same reasoning applies. While in its present state it is only a miniscule egg cell with both parents genetic material, it is, at the same time so much more. It will become, in only 9 months, a baby human being. You could say what is valued is not the fertilized cell itself, but the process it plays a contingent part in, the process that grows it to the baby valued so greatly by the parents.
Had you aborted the child you have today years ago, they would never have existed. Never have been a real, important part of your lives. That is what is killed during an abortion. Although you do not feel a strong, deep connection with the early embryo, given all goes well in 9 months you will have a living, breathing, cared for baby in your hands.
Yes, the connection you may feel early on will be minute, but that doesn't mean that what is lost in an abortion is any less human. Just delayed 9 months.
I have tried to see whether the conclusions that flow from this axiom appear to match the actual moral behaviours of real people. I don't think that they generally do.
I would agree that people don't generally go around condemning abortion to be murder. I think that, more often than we might think, some people's moral axioms come from a basis of personal convenience or interest. This is purely conjecture, but I would say that, more often than not, an abortion will happen because of a problem of convenience as opposed to life or death or for the greater good. Perhaps a condom fails, and neither parent wants the extreme complication of a baby in their lives. Naturally, most people would feel the same. So it is easier for them to get an abortion than see the pregnancy through, and because as humans we need to understand each other, many will sympathize with and support them. So yes, I would agree that it is not a popular opinion.
the problem of explaining why it doesn't intuitively feel that way to the vast majority of people. Are the vast majority of people simply wrong on this issue? Ought we to conclude that the vast majority of people are cold, psychopathic monsters, as we would of a person who killed a child without emotion?

That would surely be an odd conclusion.
In a way, my conjecture above answers this quote. It is a very good question indeed. If abortion is akin to killing, than why are so many okay with it? Well, I would begin by saying that as humans, we typically prefer to take the easier course of action as opposed to the more difficult and yet more proper route. This is why procrastination is so relatable and universal, because so many people and such a majority of the population (at least in the west) can sympathize with the urge to avoid trial, tribulation, work and effort. When an unwanted pregnancy occurs, like a condom fails, for example, the parents will typically rather this extreme complication (a baby) not be a part of their lives. Abortion is the easiest way to escape this, and naturally most people would feel the same in their position. So we sympathize, and as they say "put yourself in his/her shoes" we imagine how difficult it would be to take care of a unexpected baby and manage all your other aspects of life.
From this, we can extrapolate that we are not cold blooded killers, nor psychopathic monsters who murder babies, because it is not out of malice that we perform and support abortions. It is out of kindness, and sympathy for our fellow man. Perhaps, we simply fail to look at the bigger picture, in the face of sadness and difficulty for friends and loved ones.

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LuckyR
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Re: Is abortion wrong?

Post by LuckyR » January 16th, 2019, 1:54 am

Steve3007 wrote:
January 15th, 2019, 11:50 am
LuckyR to Socrates_2:
In your personal opinion, what (if anything) should decide the fate of unused frozen embryos (left over from infertility work)?
Yes, that's an interesting one. My own two children were conceived using IVF. As I recall, a total of eight fertilised embryos were created. Two of those were re-implanted in the womb for the first round. We nicknamed them Ren and Stimpy. Ren didn't survive. Stimpy went on to become our first child. (We didn't call him Stimpy after he was born). The other fertilised embryos were frozen and then, a couple of years later, two more were defrosted and re-implanted. Again, only one survived to become our second child. The remaining fertilised embryos were destroyed.

According to Socrates_2's moral code, we and the doctors who helped us are morally equivalent to multiple murderers. The curious thing is that we don't feel like multiple murderers. Although I can't be sure of that because I don't know for sure what actual multiple murderers feel like. I can only guess. We felt no loss or regret whatsoever at the destruction of those embryos or at the loss of those (such as Ren) that failed to re-implant successfully.

It seems to me that how one chooses to interpret that fact depends on one's attitude towards morality in general. A person who is a moral absolutist might perhaps regard our actions as morally abhorrent in an absolute sense and our lack of remorse as due to the fact that we've been conditioned by society to turn a blind eye to various kinds of absolute evils. A similar thing could be said by, for example, moral absolutist vegetarians who believe that "meat is murder" but that people are conditioned by society to accept it as morally acceptable.
The number of folks who condemn your decision making in real life is a much smaller group than those who spout off online on what the issues are theoretically.
"As usual... it depends."

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