In the past when asked if I was Pro-life or Pro-choice I never really gave a thought or an answer to the question. But since moving to Virginia and knowing someone who had to choose, and witnessing all the people protesting in front of Planned Parenthood I gave it some thought. For the last couple of weeks I have done some soul searching and some research. It seems that every website and news article all have the same arguments, and pretty much the answers. I will try to make sense of all this and give my point of view on this very controversial and very confusing matter. To jump right into this and say Pro-choice is ethical or not let’s start with some basics.
Abortion noun- the deliberate termination of a human pregnancy, most often performed during the first 28 weeks of pregnancy.i The first thing that comes to mind when I read this definition is a sense of wrong doing. The words “the deliberate termination of a human pregnancy” sets off alarms within me as if I am doing something wrong. According to The American Heritage Medical Dictionary
Abortion noun- induced termination of a pregnancy with destruction of the embryo or fetus.ii
Fetus noun- in humans, the unborn young from the end of the eighth week after conception to the moment of birth.iii Interesting how they use young and not child for this definition, but let’s continue.
Young adjective- having lived or existed for only a short time.iv
Human adjective- of, relating to, or characteristic of people or human beings.v
As a Roman Catholic I’ve always been taught that God is the only person who can take a life. “Human life is sacred because from its beginning it involves the creative action of God and it remains forever in a special relationship with the Creator, who is its sole end. God alone is the Lord of life from its beginning until its end. No one can under any circumstance claim for himself the right directly to destroy an innocent human being.”vi It is safe to say that the fetus at just 28 weeks old is very much human and you are in fact killing a human. In the eyes of the Roman Catholic Church you are committing a great sin and will be excommunicated from the church. Ethically if I apply the Divine Command Theory it is wrong to have an abortion because God condemns it and it’s the same as if I was taking a life, in turn being a great sin.
From a medical point of view, abortion has lots of side effects on your physical being and on your mental health. When your body goes thru the trauma of an abortion possible risks arise. Some of the side effects on the body are an allergic reaction, blood clots in the uterus, incomplete abortion- part of the pregnancy is left inside the uterus, failure to end the pregnancy, infection, injury to the cervix or other organs, undetected ectopic pregnancy, and very heavy bleeding.vii The other side effects and I think the most important are the psychological and emotional side effects. Emotional and psychological side effects may take years to overcome, depending on their intensity and the person. Many who have had abortions and gone to counseling have reported that they have depression, sleep disorders, memory loss, anxiety attacks, self-destructive behavior, and loss of self-esteem, sexual dysfunction, chronic problems with relationships, and the list go on. “The worst of these reactions after abortion is the suicidal and destructive tendencies. In a survey more than 100 of woman who had abortions suffered some sort of post-abortion trauma, fully 80% felt hatred toward themselves. In that same study, 49% report using drugs and 39% began to drink alcohol while 14% became an addict or an alcoholic after the abortion. 60% reported suicidal thoughts, with 28% percent actually attempting suicide.”viii If was in the position right now to have an abortion and the doctor was to tell me all these things that can go wrong with my body, I