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  1. #1
    StephTheStuden
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    Abortion - How to Solve the Controversy?

    Hello everyone, this is for a college project that I have to write on online deliberation - so please participate and help me out!

    As everyone knows abortion is a very controversial issue in the United States, and it does not appear to be going away any time soon. Many people tend to be rather polarized on this issue, but there are also the gray areas where it becomes confusing - maybe abortion is acceptable in these circumstances, maybe it should be regulated like this, etc.


    • Should abortion be completely legal, or completely illegal?
    • Or what are certain regulations or circumstances in which possible laws could/should have exceptions? Age restrictions, health reasons, rape cases, insurance policies, cost, etc?
    • Is making abortions illegal a violation of the woman's rights? Or is maybe allowing abortions a violation of the unborn child's life?
    • How could this debate be solved?

  2. #2
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    Re: Abortion - How to Solve the Controversy?

    Quote Originally Posted by StephTheStuden View Post
    Hello everyone, this is for a college project that I have to write on online deliberation - so please participate and help me out!

    As everyone knows abortion is a very controversial issue in the United States, and it does not appear to be going away any time soon. Many people tend to be rather polarized on this issue, but there are also the gray areas where it becomes confusing - maybe abortion is acceptable in these circumstances, maybe it should be regulated like this, etc.


    • Should abortion be completely legal, or completely illegal?
    • Or what are certain regulations or circumstances in which possible laws could/should have exceptions? Age restrictions, health reasons, rape cases, insurance policies, cost, etc?
    • Is making abortions illegal a violation of the woman's rights? Or is maybe allowing abortions a violation of the unborn child's life?
    • How could this debate be solved?

    Yes
    OK
    Yes
    Maybe.

    Hope that helps.
    The U.S. is currently enduring a zombie apocalypse. However, in a strange twist, the zombie's are starving.

  3. #3
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    Re: Abortion - How to Solve the Controversy?

    Debate topics must state a position and offer support. I've moved this to a discussions forum.
    Feed me some debate pellets!

  4. #4
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    Re: Abortion - How to Solve the Controversy?

    How to solve the controversy? How about people mind their own business. For those against a woman choosing to abort a fetus, which has NO EMOTIONS AND CANNOT YET FEEL PAIN, no one is forcing you to abort. Let people choose for themselves what to do with their own lives, including those not even living yet.

  5. #5
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    Re: Abortion - How to Solve the Controversy?

    Quote Originally Posted by metalhuman67 View Post
    Let people choose for themselves what to do with their own lives, including those not even living yet.
    I agree with you 100%. We must outlaw abortion so those who are now in their mother's wombs will have the chance to choose how they will live their lives.
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  6. #6
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    Re: Abortion - How to Solve the Controversy?

    Quote Originally Posted by metalhuman67 View Post
    How to solve the controversy? How about people mind their own business. For those against a woman choosing to abort a fetus, which has NO EMOTIONS AND CANNOT YET FEEL PAIN, no one is forcing you to abort. Let people choose for themselves what to do with their own lives, including those not even living yet.
    So... you are saying it is ok to rape a mentally retarded, autistic girl provided you do not physically harm her???

    As we transition from sperm to zygote to embryo to fetus to infant there must be some point where abortion is no longer acceptable, right? Is a embryo a non-living thing? How about a fetus? Is a fetus at 8 weeks the same as a fetus at 12 weeks? How about at 36 weeks?

    What I am pointing out here is that your argument is simplistic at best and a lie if we are being cynical. I believe both sides of this debate tends towards extremism and this is one of the few times where I am in the middle and sympathize with both. There is no definitive, objective truth where we can say where life starts. For some it is at conception. For some it is not until birth. Then there are all sorts of places in between. So, if we recognize that for those who view abortion as murder, that there is no valid argument to compel them to let people choose for themselves and if we recognize that women who are the carriers will often believe they are justified in choosing, then we must find a middle ground which satisfies most people. Not all people. But most. And I think most people would be satisfied if abortion had a cut-off date. Some number of weeks after gestation. I think most people would be satisfied if the federal government offered no subsidies going towards this practice. So, abortion would be a protected right up until some cut-off point unless there was a medically urgent reason (i.e. mother's life at risk) to extend the cut-off. I think doctors should be absolutely protected in providing abortions prior to the cut-off date.

    Now.... will we ever get to this pragmatic type of policy? Hell no. Democrats and Republicans need this third rail to galvanize the troops and the crazies on both sides will never accept compromise from their own party. The whores will be whores and they'll quickly shame any would-be whore who refuses to open his/her legs. So, I am going to prognosticate that we will be fighting over abortions for the next 100 years... until some smart guy develops a home abortion kit using a non-surgical procedure involving nano-technology and Martian space eggs.
    The U.S. is currently enduring a zombie apocalypse. However, in a strange twist, the zombie's are starving.

  7. #7
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    Re: Abortion - How to Solve the Controversy?

    Quote Originally Posted by StephTheStuden View Post
    Hello everyone, this is for a college project that I have to write on online deliberation - so please participate and help me out!

    How could this debate be solved?
    Concerted, focused, ongoing, objective, factual (scientific), non-biased, education using modern day media tools regarding the development of human life at all stages of development.

    I think if people knew better, most people will do better, i.e. the right thing with regards to abortion. Ignorance and convenience can be an easy choice. But ignorance is never bliss. It's just a temporary convenient excuse.

    A concerted, well funded, sustained, objective educational campaign for all young adults about the development of human life, will not make the controversy go away, but after a few years it would probably take it down to a low roar. Just like anything else in our so called enlightened society, when we're objectively educated and informed with the facts, common sense often sets in; reason sets in and a new thinking begins to develop.
    Last edited by eye4magic; March 13th, 2013 at 09:26 AM.
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  8. #8
    Katforichon
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    Re: Abortion - How to Solve the Controversy?

    Quote Originally Posted by eye4magic View Post
    Concerted, focused, ongoing, objective, factual (scientific), non-biased, education using modern day media tools regarding the development of human life at all stages of development.

    I think if people knew better, most people will do better, i.e. the right thing with regards to abortion. Ignorance and convenience can be an easy choice. But ignorance is never bliss. It's just a temporary convenient excuse.

    A concerted, well funded, sustained, objective educational campaign for all young adults about the development of human life, will not make the controversy go away, but after a few years it would probably take it down to a low roar. Just like anything else in our so called enlightened society, when we're objectively educated and informed with the facts, common sense often sets in; reason sets in and a new thinking begins to develop.
    I completely agree. I've often run into people who have formed their opinions on this issue based solely off of what other people have told them, but seem to know little about unbiased facts otherwise. Instead, they tend to just believe whatever people tell them.

  9. #9
    Katforichon
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    Re: Abortion - How to Solve the Controversy?

    I do not think that abortion should be completely illegal, as there is a possibility that it could simply sweep the issue under the rug instead of fully addressing it. I have heard vaguely of other countries (don't quote me on this, this is simply from memory) where abortion is illegal, and women instead undergo back alley-type abortions illegally, which are extremely unsafe. I think that it would do well to instead educate people better on the issue, and for those who are against abortion, maybe offer help once they have the child.

  10. #10
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    Re: Abortion - How to Solve the Controversy?

    No debate is more futile than the abortion debate. No one will ever be convinced to move their own personal definition of where life begins; be it from conception, to a day before birth. There's no objective criteria for declaring the point where an embryo suddenly becomes a human being, with human rights.

  11. #11
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    Re: Abortion - How to Solve the Controversy?

    Quote Originally Posted by Landrew View Post
    No debate is more futile than the abortion debate. No one will ever be convinced to move their own personal definition of where life begins; be it from conception, to a day before birth. There's no objective criteria for declaring the point where an embryo suddenly becomes a human being, with human rights.
    Many people have changed their minds on the issue over the years and society has shifted back and forth as to what is allowed and what is not. Thus, not so futile. I think its true that it will never be solved for all time but the day to day engagement will go on so long as new humans are born and have to confront the issue for themselves.
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  12. #12
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    Re: Abortion - How to Solve the Controversy?

    As with all of our previous abortion debates, the elephant in the room is a lack of an agreed upon definition of human life (as odd as that may seem). We lack a definite answer as to when a person becomes a person. The standard pro-choice answer of "independence" seems inadequate because that opens a large box of possible options such as aborting 2 year olds or the mentally handicapped.
    "Suffering lies not with inequality, but with dependence." -Voltaire
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  13. #13
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    Re: Abortion - How to Solve the Controversy?

    Quote Originally Posted by Squatch347 View Post
    As with all of our previous abortion debates, the elephant in the room is a lack of an agreed upon definition of human life (as odd as that may seem).
    No, I don't think there's much debate that at the moment of conception there's a "human life". It's a question of when does that life attain human rights. And it's not strange that as the fetus develops, the thought of aborting it because less palatable for everyone, pro-choice and pro-life alike.

    Quote Originally Posted by Squatch347 View Post
    We lack a definite answer as to when a person becomes a person. The standard pro-choice answer of "independence" seems inadequate because that opens a large box of possible options such as aborting 2 year olds or the mentally handicapped.
    No, the standard pro-choice answer is "viability" which means the life can exist outside of the womb which definitely covers any born person.

  14. #14
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    Re: Abortion - How to Solve the Controversy?

    Quote Originally Posted by mican333 View Post
    No, I don't think there's much debate that at the moment of conception there's a "human life". It's a question of when does that life attain human rights. And it's not strange that as the fetus develops, the thought of aborting it because less palatable for everyone, pro-choice and pro-life alike.
    I disagree, I think there is a necessary bit of mental gymnastics involved in saying that human beings don't have human rights. Usually this is achieved by saying that the mother too has rights, but this is somewhat unsatisfactory due to the disparate outcomes of the rights being weighed (significant time and financial impact vs death).


    Quote Originally Posted by Mican
    No, the standard pro-choice answer is "viability" which means the life can exist outside of the womb which definitely covers any born person.
    This doesn't really absolve the objection though. Viability is not tied to the explanation used by pro-choice advocates. They attempt to invoke that a fetus is dependent on the mother and that the mother has the right not to be "parasitically" fed off of. The same is true for a newborn or a mentally handicapped person. The resulting change towards viability is more a sophistry change than an actual change in rationale.
    "Suffering lies not with inequality, but with dependence." -Voltaire
    "Fallacies do not cease to be fallacies because they become fashions. -G.K. Chesterton
    Also, if you think I've overlooked your post please shoot me a PM, I'm not intentionally ignoring you.


  15. #15
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    Re: Abortion - How to Solve the Controversy?

    Quote Originally Posted by Squatch347 View Post
    I disagree, I think there is a necessary bit of mental gymnastics involved in saying that human beings don't have human rights.
    But who says that pro-choicers consider fetuses to be "human beings"? In your previous statement you used the term "human life", not "human beings".


    Quote Originally Posted by Squatch347 View Post
    This doesn't really absolve the objection though. Viability is not tied to the explanation used by pro-choice advocates.
    I disagree. In debates I consistently use the criteria of viability. If you want to say that others use a different criteria, perhaps they do. But you cannot make a blanket statement that pro-choice beliefs do not factor in viability at all.

    I AM a pro-choicer so MY beliefs are indicative of pro-choice philosophy even if other pro-choicers disagree with me.

  16. #16
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    Re: Abortion - How to Solve the Controversy?

    Quote Originally Posted by mican333 View Post
    But who says that pro-choicers consider fetuses to be "human beings"? In your previous statement you used the term "human life", not "human beings".
    Perhaps you could detail the difference for me? I'm not sure I understand how those two are fundamentally different.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mican
    I disagree. In debates I consistently use the criteria of viability. If you want to say that others use a different criteria, perhaps they do. But you cannot make a blanket statement that pro-choice beliefs do not factor in viability at all.

    I AM a pro-choicer so MY beliefs are indicative of pro-choice philosophy even if other pro-choicers disagree with me.
    That isn't exactly my argument. My argument is that the difference between viability and independence are ephemeral, especially when we discuss the moral reasons underlying the pro-choice position. Viability also tends to be somewhat of a medically nebulus term. Do we mean viable given an incubator? A breathing machine? Or viable giving nothing more than food and water?
    "Suffering lies not with inequality, but with dependence." -Voltaire
    "Fallacies do not cease to be fallacies because they become fashions. -G.K. Chesterton
    Also, if you think I've overlooked your post please shoot me a PM, I'm not intentionally ignoring you.


  17. #17
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    Re: Abortion - How to Solve the Controversy?

    Quote Originally Posted by Squatch347 View Post
    Perhaps you could detail the difference for me? I'm not sure I understand how those two are fundamentally different.
    A human being has all of the rights that we associate with born humans.

    Quote Originally Posted by Squatch347 View Post
    That isn't exactly my argument. My argument is that the difference between viability and independence are ephemeral, especially when we discuss the moral reasons underlying the pro-choice position. Viability also tends to be somewhat of a medically nebulus term. Do we mean viable given an incubator? A breathing machine? Or viable giving nothing more than food and water?
    All of the above. If an unborn can be removed from the womb and kept alive, then it should be afforded legal protections that are denied to fetuses that cannot be kept alive once removed from the womb.

    And I should not that I am not speaking for all pro-choicers (for none of us can speak for every single one of us) but if there is an inherent contradiction in pro-choice belief then that must apply to me as well so my position of "viability" is as valid a criteria for pro-choice belief as any other criteria one can hold and still be considered pro-choice.

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    Re: Abortion - How to Solve the Controversy?

    Quote Originally Posted by mican333 View Post
    A human being has all of the rights that we associate with born humans.
    That is begging the question.

    You are self defining a difference that presupposes the conclusion, that human beings have rights, but living humans might not have rights. I don't think that gives us much of a fundamental difference to base rights assignment on.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mican
    All of the above. If an unborn can be removed from the womb and kept alive, then it should be afforded legal protections that are denied to fetuses that cannot be kept alive once removed from the womb.
    So if we were to invent an artificial womb would women lose the ability to have an abortion? So the fetus gains rights if it moves from being reliant on the mother to being reliant on someone else?

    You make a point about you only being able to speak for yourself, so can I ask, under what moral authority does the woman exercises her ability to have an abortion?
    "Suffering lies not with inequality, but with dependence." -Voltaire
    "Fallacies do not cease to be fallacies because they become fashions. -G.K. Chesterton
    Also, if you think I've overlooked your post please shoot me a PM, I'm not intentionally ignoring you.


  19. #19
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    Re: Abortion - How to Solve the Controversy?

    Quote Originally Posted by Squatch347 View Post
    You are self defining a difference that presupposes the conclusion, that human beings have rights, but living humans might not have rights. I don't think that gives us much of a fundamental difference to base rights assignment on.
    It just depends on when one feels that the human life has progresses far enough to qualify as having rights and therefore be considered "human beings". Pro-lifers generally say "conception" and pro-choicers either say "viability" or "at birth".

    Quote Originally Posted by Squatch347 View Post
    So if we were to invent an artificial womb would women lose the ability to have an abortion?
    I'd say technically she's still having an abortion if the fetus is removed from her body and moved to another location but still survives. And if you want to define abortion as necessarily involve the death of the fetus then I would say that women could no longer have abortions (or at least the legal justification for having them would be greatly diminished).


    Quote Originally Posted by Squatch347 View Post
    So the fetus gains rights if it moves from being reliant on the mother to being reliant on someone else?
    It gains rights once it is capable of surviving outside of the womb.


    Quote Originally Posted by Squatch347 View Post
    You make a point about you only being able to speak for yourself, so can I ask, under what moral authority does the woman exercises her ability to have an abortion?
    If you mean the legal right, I would say it comes under the right to medical privacy which falls under the fourth amendment.

  20. #20
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    Re: Abortion - How to Solve the Controversy?

    Quote Originally Posted by Squatch347 View Post
    This doesn't really absolve the objection though. Viability is not tied to the explanation used by pro-choice advocates. They attempt to invoke that a fetus is dependent on the mother and that the mother has the right not to be "parasitically" fed off of. The same is true for a newborn or a mentally handicapped person. The resulting change towards viability is more a sophistry change than an actual change in rationale.
    Do you feel we are morally and legally obligated to care for those in society unable to fully care for themselves? AKA we should have state welfare for anyone disabled to a degree they cannot earn a set standard of living?

    I couch the answer of viability differently. It is not a question of our willingness it is a question of our ability. If we cannot care fore the life of the child then we cannot take responsibility for that life and it remains the responsibility of the only individual who has the power to care for it. In other words, for all practical purposes mother and child are one individual until such time as the society could care for the child without the mother. This for me is a legal answer to the question one where we are examining the scope of the societies authority to dictate to individuals how they act. If a society is utterly powerless to sustain a life, can that life said to be part of the society?

    ---------- Post added at 01:18 PM ---------- Previous post was at 01:04 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by eye4magic View Post
    I think public opinion will probably continue to shape the answer to this question as it has for the past 40 years. Personally, I'm pro-life. It's interesting to note, however, that the national mood about abortion is changing in America and it looks like "abortions are becoming illegal in more states at a rapid clip."
    I think there are a number of factors at work.

    1. There may well be an element of pro/against abortion.
    2. It may be that without the extremes of full abortion bans being the objective, a wider audience is willing to support more limited legislation. (I think this is the winner)
    3. I may be greater regional polarization on the issue.
    4. It could be the inevitable progress of the insurgent side of the issue making ground against the defending position.



    This is interesting
    http://www.gallup.com/poll/126581/ge...on-narrow.aspx

    It shows generational opinions over time. I'm not sure it supports many of these possibilities in public opinion. It shows that support for abortion grew from Roe vs Wade through the 1990s and then has declined back to levels around the time of the 1970's though the variation is not especially big (about 10% or so).

    The overall views show that the strongest support is for legal abortion with restrictions. The weakest support is for a complete ban, followed a bit by legal with no restrictions.
    That means the concensus point is for some restricttions on abortions but not to have it be illegal.

    Given that, I think the strongest case to be made is that legislative efforts have shifted from creating full bans on abortions to creating reasonable restrictions on them instead, and as that shift has occurred those laws have found greater support and less opposition.

    But if the opinions hold true, that trend will not continue to efforts to outright ban abortion, at that point the coalition against would be far larger than the coalition for.
    Feed me some debate pellets!

 

 
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