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CHAPTER 11 â ABORTION Chapter Summary Value of life principle versus principle of individual freedom. When does life begin and when should it be protected? Extreme positions on each side both support absolute rights. Abortion in American history In 1800 abortion was tolerated. In 1900 abortion was banned in every state. In 1973 Roe v. Wade overturned laws against abortion. The legal status of abortion in the United States Legality of abortion based on âtrimesterâ approach: 1st trimester â permitted without exception 2nd trimester â permitted with restrictions 3rd trimester â prohibited except threat to life or health of woman When does human life begin? 1. Life is present from conception but there may be different point at which such a life can be considered human. 2. The concept passes through various stages of development. The closer to âviabilityâ the more âhumanâ it becomes. 3. Difficult to state that, in earliest stages, the life is fully human. Equally difficult to state that after the twelfth week this is not an actual human life. Arguments against abortion 1. Genetic view of the beginning of human life 2. Sanctity or value of life argument 3. The Domino argument 4. The dangers of abortion to the motherâs life a. Medical b. Psychological 5. The relative safety of pregnancy 6. The existence of viable alternatives 7. The irrelevance of economic considerations 8. Responsibility for sexual activities 9. Rape and incest Arguments for abortion 1. Rights of women over their bodies 2. Birth as the beginning of human life 3. Problem of unwanted or deformed children a. Adoption as poor solution b. Lack of human institutions 75 Copyright Â© 2009 Pearson Education, Inc., Upper Saddle River, NJ 07458. All rights reserved.