Abortion Essay

2143 words - 9 pages

Abortion, one of the most controversial issues in the United States today, should remain legal because it helps to regulate population levels, keep unwanted children from being born, neglected, beaten or abandoned and in some cases it can also reduce divorce rates. Abortions can be practical for potential parents who do not have the money, time or experience to raise a child at this point in time in their life (especially teenagers). Women who have been raped also may have an abortion because she can not bear to a child that she did not willing conceive. Abortions are further more used to save the life of the mother. Abortion is defined as, the induced termination of a pregnancy followed by the death of the embryo or fetus.

It was officially made legal throughout the United States on January 22, 1973 with the Supreme Court ruling of Roe v. Wade. "Jane Roe" was single, pregnant woman wanted to get an abortion by a "competent, licensed physician, under safe, clinical conditions" (The Ethics of Abortion 13). This was not an option for her because the only way a woman could have an abortion in Texas at that time was if giving birth to the child might in some way endanger her life. Many woman would have traveled to a state where abortions were legal but this was not an option for Roe because she did not have the finances to do so. "She claimed that the Texas statutes were unconstitutionally vague and that they abridged her right of personal privacy, protected by the First, Fourth, Fifth, Ninth, and Fourteenth Amendment." She also said that "she would sue on half of herself and all other women"(The Ethics of Abortion 14). Mr. Justice Blackmum understood that abortion was not a problem that could be answered over night, but instead it was an issue that would take over a year to finally come to decision. He also realized that he would have to base his decision solely on what the Constitution stated. After going through the Constitution and reading it many times he finally came to the conclusion that in the Fourteenth amendment under "due process" clause, the right to privacy was guaranteed to the people. Justice Blackmum concluded that "the right of personal privacy included the abortion decision, but that this right is not unqualified and much be considered against important state interests in regulations" (Abortion and American Politics 27). These regulations are the trimesters used to determine if the mother was able to have an abortion. During the first trimester, or months 1-3, the decision is left up to the mother and her physician. In the second and third trimesters the state has the right to intervene; this is usually done only to save the life of the mother.

Ever since then there has been a clash between the beliefs of the Pro-choice and the Pro-life advocates. Pro-choice supporters feel that the woman has the right to choose what she does with her body (right to privacy or 14th amendment). On the other hand...

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