In this discussion I would like to talk about abortion. It is always something I have felt very strong about and would argue to the ends of the earth on. I have always been Pro-Life, always. Ever since I became an Atheist, this topic keeps popping up in my head. Since it is something I have not wanted to confront, I have been pushing it to the back burner. Now that I have given it some thought I would like to tell you where I used to stand and where I stand now. When I was a Christian my thought process was "Abortion is Never the right choice unless the mother and child will both die." So even if the child were to survive and the mother dies, abortion is still not the right choice. Some might even consider that murder, I guess. To answer this question I'm sure someone will ask, Yes I would have and still would give up my life for my child. Well, now I'm sort of seeing things a bit different. If a female gets raped and gets pregnant from it, abortion is ok, (sad all the way around - for everyone).  If a woman chooses to abort a baby due to the risk to the mothers life, Ok. If the baby will have a very very very difficult life and in turn make the parents have an equally difficult life, ok. To me abortion is a horrible thing, if someone wants to have an abortion just because oops I got preggo. That is horrible. If you don't want kids do everything in your power to NOT get pregnant. Simple as that. Life is a beautiful an precious thing, and yes I do believe it is special.  Any and All comments are welcome :)

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I'm staunchly pro-choice, so long as the abortion is carried out early in the pregnancy, before foetal development has progressed too far. I think that safe, early-term abortion should be legal for any reason. However, I don't like the idea of using abortion in place of a birth control method, and I don't think it's a wise decision to have an abortion without thinking it through fully (weighing the consequences before an accidental pregnancy occurs is even better, as it gives a solid basis for a decision to be made).

If a woman doesn't want to get pregnant, she should take every reasonable precaution to prevent pregnancy. I'm all for reducing the need and/or desire for abortions by making reliable birth control and emergency contraception more affordable and readily available to women of all ages. But I do think that sometimes an abortion is the most responsible decision when thinking about the well-being of both the mother and the potential child, and I think the welfare of the already-independently-existing woman always trumps the well-being of a foetus.
I agree with much of what you have said, especially "so long as the abortion is carried out early in the pregnancy" - early is much better than later. However, I don't think abortion should be legal for "any reason".

Thanks for responding wisp :)
Late term abortion IMO is absoultley wrong. It is wrong because the child could be saved via medical technology. I will never change my opinion on that, ever. third trimester abortions are murder. Somewhere in the united states someone wants that baby even if the mother doesn't.

The moral difference is the fact that the baby can survive. Not to mention at that stage we are sure of the fact that the baby can feel pain and so on. this is part of the subject where I could get shouting mad and so I will end here.

Thank You Jean for replying to this discussion :)
I would hope that the mother would think of the child in the way of her wanting the doctors to take every step they can to save the baby once it was born, not aborted.

I think the only true phrase here IS third trimester. Late tem can mean several different things to several different people. So the medical term here would be the best one to use.

I think it is tragic to lose life when it is not "natural". i do not condone what the extremist are doing.

I do not think what these third trimester abortion doctors are doing is by any means right. The child should always try to be born and saved, never aborted.
You seem to be under the impression that third trimester abortions are a result of the woman just postponing an elective (that is, non-medically necessary) abortion until the last minute.

In all reality, the vast majority of fetuses aborted in the third trimester are nonviable. They wouldn't survive any longer than a few days outside the womb (if they even made it to childbirth) and they may pose a serious threat to the woman. I'd imagine that many women who have third trimester abortions are incredibly distraught: they must have really wanted that baby to carry it for months, only to find out that either it wouldn't live or she wouldn't live (or neither would live). What a decision to have to go through.

Here are two links providing reasons for third trimester abortions:

The most common reason for postponing abortion to the third trimester was to make extra-sure that the abortion is necessary. So which would you rather see: unnecessary second trimester abortions or necessary third trimester abortions? Until better screenings for fetal abnormalities are developed, these are the choices (if you want to keep the woman alive, of course. if you don't, there's always more options).
Late term abortions are only legal in the U.S. for medical reasons. The 5% (from the study) that delayed their decision into the 3rd trimester also had medical reasons but couldn't or wouldn't decide earlier.

I, of course, have no problem with late term abortions for valid medical reasons.
I do not have a problem with abortions that are medically necessary.

Your story brought a tear to my eye, Jennifer. Thanks for relating it.

I don't know any person or group that is advocating on-demand 3rd trimester abortions for non-medical reasons. When it becomes a question of risking the mother's life that must be a decision made by the mother herself. An analogy that I saw once that really brought this home to me was that of an organ donation. Suppose your child needed a vital organ and the only donor who could be found in time to save their life was the child's mother. Would it be fair if the law said the mother has no choice in the matter and must give up her life in order to save the child?

I'm glad it didn't come to that for you but I think your decision was the right one.

Debates on late abortions are strictly a consequence of pro-lifers making a dent in abortion access... A first dent, leading to a second, a third, etc, until access to abortion is once again eroded. We are already on this path.

All abortions need to be at the request of the mother, no other being has any right deciding. A foetus is born when it is damn ready to be born, through various biochemical readiness signals, such as surfactant formation in the lungs.

No date before natural birth date, 9 months, give or take a week, is of any relevance. Premies are long term problems, their average health is lower than the rest of the population. Biologically viable and laboratory viable are two different ideas.

A woman's body does not suddenly not become her own to manage just because a foetus has become survivable by doctors. Anyone advocating against late term pregnancies should be forced to themselves rear those babies born under duress.

Thank you for that story Jennifer.  Sorry for your loss.  A note on the second to last paragraph, there are many people who would say you were or would have been selfish no matter which path you chose.  In the end, when it's your life or the life of your unborn child in the balance, that is your choice to make, and no one should be able to judge you on that.

"Somewhere in the united states someone wants that baby even if the mother doesn't."

A good friend of mine went the full term and gave her baby up for adoption. She got pregnant even with the use of contraception by the way. She has never spent a day since (it happened about 4 years ago) where she hasn't felt the mental anguish of losing her baby. As a result, she wishes every day she'd had an abortion. I have received hate mail for my views on abortion. The one that sticks in my mind is: "9 months of labour is nothing compared to giving someone a baby" (sic) from a person (woman) who had obviously never been pregnant.

Giving babies away is a very easy argument to use but a route that is strewn with problems - both mental and, in the case of the young, physical. You may have a point with late abortions with those who indulge in casual sex after maturity and use it as a routine method of contraception (something nobody agrees with, I think) but to use adoption as an argument is lazy and mis-informed.
Indeed, creating a human with the INTENT of removing it from it's mother should be a crime. The one right a newborn has is to its mother, all babies should be breastfead for as long as possible to ensure healthy children. So if one does not intent on mothering the baby, the baby should not be born.


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