Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Why Should We Limit Abortions? [Serge]

As I was preparing for the debate last week, I realized that virtually all of the sources that I was using to support my argument came from either neutral or pro-abortion choice sources. One of the most powerful arguments that I presented that was not answered by Dr. Jonas did not come directly from me, but from Catholics for Free Choice President Francis Kissling. Francis asks this important question in Salon Magazine:

If abortion is a morally neutral act and does not endanger women's health, why bother to prevent the need for it? After all, the cost of a first-trimester abortion is comparable to the cost of a year's supply of birth control pills -- and abortion has fewer complications and less medical risk for women than some of the most effective methods of contraception.
I asked this question right after Dr. Jonas claimed that women's reproductive rights were being threatened because there were less and less physicians willing to perform abortions. If women's rights can be strengthened by having more physicians performing abortions, then why attempt to make them rare? Is it a problem if a woman simply chooses to forgo contraception and chooses to have an abortion every year? If it is a positive expression of her rights, why not? How about women who have abortion for sex selection? How about abortion to increase one's athletic prowess, as East German women were reported to do?

If abortion is a morally neutral act, why are these situations not celebrated? If the right of abortion is an absolute right, and one that women's rights are intrinsically hinged upon (as we continually hear after Gonzalez v Carhart), why question these situations?

Maybe one day I'll hear a coherent answer to this question.

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