Recently, we have seen bills passed in Georgia and Alabama that put severe restrictions on abortion. Ohio and Mississippi have also passed legislation similar to Georgia. In this post, I will discuss the details of the laws passed in Georgia and Alabama as well as make arguments against abortion. I will also make rebuttals to common arguments made in favor abortion.
Let us begin with Georgia. Current law in Georgia outlaws abortion after 20 weeks. The newly passed legislation would outlaw abortion after six weeks. It would also be illegal to perform an abortion if a heartbeat is detected. The law does include exceptions for rape and incest. The penalties for breaking current Georgia abortion law is imprisonment for not less than one and nor more than 10 years.
In Alabama, the new law would ban nearly all abortions at any stage except in the cases when the mother’s physical or mental health are in danger. The law also does not carry exceptions for rape or incest. A doctor who performs an abortion would be charged with a Class A felony, which can carry a punishment of life in prison or imprisonment for 10 to 99 years. Attempting to perform an abortion would be a Class C felony, which is punishable by one to 10 years in prison. The woman seeking the abortion would not be charged with anything. This law is meant to be a direct challenge to Roe v. Wade. I expect that there will be litigation on this law as well as the law passed in Georgia , which will most likely go to the Supreme Court.
With regards to the legality of abortion, the Constitution does not say anything about it. It is not even mentioned once. The tenth amendment of the Constitution says, “the powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.” Since the Constitution has given no authority to the federal government over abortion, the issue is left up to the states, or to the people. Therefore, Alabama and Georgia are within their rights as states to pass legislation on abortion. The new laws are a certainly a great step in the right direction, and I hope the challenge to Roe v. Wade is successful.
Now that we have covered the laws, let me make my arguments against abortion. I believe that abortion is immoral on the grounds that is is wrong to end an innocent human being’s life by force. Human life begins at conception. When the sperm meets the egg, the zygote immediately begins cell division and multiplies. It begins the process of developing into a human, through a steady process of cell division and differentiation into body parts and organs. Even if it does not resemble a child in the early stages, the fetus is still living and growing. If that process is ended by an abortion at any stage, it is in effect ending a child’s life. Since that child’s life is sacred, the method of conception is irrelevant. Even if a child is conceived through rape or incest, it does not justify ending the child’s life. Why should the child be punished for a crime that the parent committed?
Those who advocate for abortion have yet to come up with their own coherent definition of when life begins. The lack of a clear definition has paved the way to the passage of absurd laws that allow for abortion into the third trimester. If it is the case that they cannot define when life begins, why would they then take the risk of ending a human life by supporting abortion? Isn’t it possible that an abortion would end a child’s life? Some of those that I have spoken to have said that they would still support a woman’s right to choose, even if it means ending a child’s life. This is a violation of a child’s right to life and it is immoral.
A common phrase that is used by those who advocate for abortion is “my body, my choice.” This is blatantly false and must be refuted. The child that is within a pregnant woman’s uterus is not “her body.” The child has different DNA and often times a different blood type from the mother. The child also has its own brain and internal organs. The mother is only carrying the child, it is not a part of her body in the same way that her arm or her nose is. The child has his or her own body and therefore a right to life. With regards to choice, there are numerous laws on the books that prevent women from doing things that they want with their body, like laws against prostitution or taking illegal drugs. Regardless of whether the laws are sensible, the idea that the law cannot dictate what a woman does with her body goes against American legal precedent.
Speaking of the law, people who favor abortion also make the argument that if abortion is outlawed, women to will turn to unsafe methods such as using coat hangers or taking poisons to do away with a child. This same argument can be used against the government outlawing anything. If murder is against the law, wouldn’t crazy people resort to finding nefarious ways to kill someone? Why should there be laws against stealing if people are going to steal anyway? Just because people will break the law does not mean that the law should not exist. The goal of legislation should be creating a morally correct outcome. Preserving human life is what is morally correct and outlawing abortion will help us achieve that goal.
Another common argument made in favor of abortion is that if a woman has been raped or is in a difficult financial situation, having a child would lead to a great deal of discomfort and trauma. To this, I would say that the argument puts the mother’s horrible experience of having the child above the child’s right to life. While I have enormous sympathy for a woman in that situation, I don’t think a difficult situation for the mother is enough justification to end a child’s life. Even in a difficult situation, a woman still has the option of giving the child up for adoption. According to the CDC, 10% of women between the ages of 15-44 have difficulty getting and staying pregnant. There are many couples who do not have children and still yearn to have them. Adoption is a viable option for both the beleaguered mother and the childless couple.
I look forward to seeing the progress that America makes in ending the evil of abortion. I think the laws that have been passed are a good first step. We can continue our efforts in our home states and see that they pass similar laws. It is also important to have conversations with our friends and family on the issue, so that we may bring more people to our cause. I hope that my arguments in this post have supplied you with some confidence and ammunition to use when you begin your own efforts to put an end to abortion.