Ethical Issue: Abortion


One of the most ethical dilemmas the society is facing for decades is the issue on abortion. There are many strong arguments about the issue for those who are in favor and against it. Abortion is defined as pregnancy termination. It could be done intentionally (by choice) or accidentally as in miscarriage. Abortions caused by rape, incest and possible health concerns to mother or baby constitute just 7%. Social and personal issues are the cause for rest of the abortions.

Facts on Abortion

  • Approximately 60% of abortions are performed on single women.
  • Deciding whether to abort or keep the baby or give it up for adoption is a hard decision to make and may lead to post-abortion trauma.
  • When a woman decides to go for an abortion, the decision is NOT done impulsively. However, the preceding act might be impetuous.
  • Half the percentage of women getting an abortion done is below 25 years of age.

Issue on Abortion

The issue on abortion is impossible to solve. What an individual can do is to understand the different aspects of the argument so that when that person is faced with the ethical dilemma he or she would be able to make rational, educated and thoughtful decisions in dealing with the situation. Debates are usually focused on politics and the law. However, behind the debates are more fundamental ethical questions which are not always given specific attention they deserve.

Arguments AGAINST abortion

  • A growing embryo is considered a human being with heart beats initiating as early as the 21st day age of gestation.
  • Unplanned pregnancies may be proved to be wanted later.
  • Terminating a pregnancy is being unmerciful to the unborn child.
  • If the mother has financial difficulty raising the child after giving birth choosing adoption is an alternative that would honor the baby’s right to live.
  • Abortion presents life-threatening complications and death. These complications include infection, sepsis and recurrent miscarriages.
  • The woman may suffer from serious psychological impairment (depression and guilt) after abortion.

Arguments IN FAVOR of abortion

  • The life of the baby depends on the mother’s health and it would be best for the mother to choose for herself either she wants the baby or not.
  • The mother is the one who will be going through the actual labor, continuing pregnancy and giving birth to the baby. In addition to that she will be the one to parent the child together with her daily life obligations and responsibilities. Thus, she can decide on what she wants.
  • Restricting abortions would cause an elevation of the illegal and unsafe abortion percentage. Once made legal abortion complications will most likely be prevented as people can receive the care they need during an abortion.

Daisy Jane Antipuesto RN MN

Currently a Nursing Local Board Examination Reviewer. Subjects handled are Pediatric, Obstetric and Psychiatric Nursing. Previous work experiences include: Clinical instructor/lecturer, clinical coordinator (Level II), caregiver instructor/lecturer, NC2 examination reviewer and staff/clinic nurse. Areas of specialization: Emergency room, Orthopedic Ward and Delivery Room. Also an IELTS passer.

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