Abortion is the ‘miscarriage of an unborn child, whether naturally (a ‘spontaneous abortion’ normally just called a ‘miscarriage’) or artificially caused (an ‘induced abortion’).*
Induced abortion can be either chemically induced, by a morning after pill, RU486, or as is commonly the case in Australia, physician assisted surgical abortion, whereby the child is directly killed and removed by surgical equipment. Other methods include saline abortion, and partial birth abortion.
The commonly prescribed contraceptive pill is also known to at times act as an abortifacient, making the implantation of a healthy embryo on the womb lining less likely, resulting in a miscarriage (that is, a chemically induced abortion).
* Fisher, Anthony and Buckinngham Jane, Abortion in Australia: Answers and Alternatives. Dove Communications, Blackburn, Victoria, 1985, p.5
Abortion has and continues to be a highly controversial topic. It is too commonly viewed simplistically as a fight between the forces of Judeo-Christian reaction on the one hand and feminist progressivism on the other. It is truly an issue of human rights and the unborn deserves protection. A just and civilised society demands it.
Why abortion is not the answer
All the arguments favouring abortion are essentially humanist and whose principles redefine established terms such as person, rights, and “common good” along humanist lines. The great danger in applying these principles to society is that the terms and hence laws, are open to constant reinterpretation based on no certain principle which can successfully safeguard the human rights of all members of society. That all human persons are equal in nature and hence in legal and moral rights, is surely the only secure foundation on which to build a safe and just society. Adding exceptions to the basic right of all to life has proven dangerous in many societies: the Nazi’s exempted numerous groups from their list of persons, and these persons lost all legal standing. Other acknowledged tyrannies have done the same. One of the exemptions in our society currently is the pre-born, whose rights are now conditional. Gulags and concentration camps are and were full of people who have been declared by the state to be ‘non-persons’.
The denial of true rights to even one member of society threatens the right of all persons in that society, as there are no inviolable rights for anyone. Abortion, for no matter what the reason, is always a violation of the most basic of human rights – that is, the right to life. If a mother has difficulties, a civilised society must offer assistance which respects the rights of all concerned. Providing stronger deterrents and punishments for rape would be one thing worth considering.
Not one of the arguments favouring abortion, no matter how reasonable they may sound, affirms the existence of the basic and universal right to life for all based on a common human nature. Hence, we cannot proceed from their principles to create just law. The so-called ‘hard’ cases, where the mother’s life may be endangered by the continued pregnancy, are also no true argument for granting an exception, as both lives must be protected, not only the mothers: “Hard cases make bad laws.”
Watch Lila Rose debate abortion on CNN Crossfire
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