Since the U.S. Supreme Court’s overturning of Roe v Wade it has become clear that we are now wading into another row – over abortion. And as usual, those on the Left are reacting irrationally and violently, while those on the Right are wrestling with their own consciences over the moral implications of abortion.
The inconvenient reality concerning the unborn is that during pregnancy, two human lives occupy the same space at the same time. If one assumes that the unborn have rights, this creates an unavoidable contradiction given that such rights would conflict with those of the mother – in whose body the unborn child exists.
But this contradiction is illusionary because another inconvenient reality is that the unborn are not capable of having “rights” – nor, for that matter, are children. To confer “rights” upon either group is a meaningless gesture given that actual rights are attached both to responsibilities and to the freedom of action necessary to exercise them.
In this context, a more appropriate and accurate term to apply to children and the unborn is “status.” This is no mere exercise in semantics. The “status” of children and other individuals incapable of exercising rights (such as the mentally ill or severely physically disabled) is subordinate to those assigned with the rights and responsibilities for their care – and under whose rights they are protected.
Though children do not have rights as such, they do have a conferred status. Under the rule of law, this status has been established such that even those under whose charge the status exists are not legally permitted to violate their lives, health, or safety. There is a strong case to be made that could effectively extend such status to the unborn in the late stages of pregnancy, but it could not be applied to the earliest stages of a pregnancy.
However, before any such case can be made, it must first be established that, like a child, an unborn baby is indeed a human being, which happens to be an undeniable fact. In listening to those on the Left it is clear that they do not even acknowledge the existence of the unborn as human beings. This allows them to conveniently dismiss the fact that having an abortion might affect “another” human being.
This is beyond ironic and hypocritical, given that when it comes to forced injections, the left justifies the violation of its sacred “my body my choice” philosophy on the grounds that those who refuse to get an injection are affecting the “lives of others.” Of course, the fact is that this is not so.
The overturning of Roe v Wade should be viewed as an opportunity to re-ignite a necessary discussion and debate that not only acknowledges the fact of human life in the womb, but which also ensures informed consent on the part of those choosing to have abortions.
Before we wade into another row on abortion, let’s be sure that we have our facts and definitions Just Right, because lives depend on it.
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