a) Arguments Against Abortion
Summarise arguments against abortion with reference to both ethical and religious teachings.
The vast majority of the arguments against abortion base themselves on the following three questions:
1. What makes a human valuable?
2. When does life start?
3. What is the societal implication of abortion?
Most Catholics and Protestants would agree that abortion is unacceptable on the grounds that humans are made in God's image and therefore it is a grave sin to kill anything human (Christians therefore believe all humans are equal in value). They provide evidence for the idea that life starts at conception with biblical quotes like "the days ordained to me were written in your book before one even came to be" and "your eyes saw my unformed body" suggesting that our personhood in God's view starts at as soon as the egg is fertilised. With that in mind, one of the ten commandments: "thou shalt not kill" would apply strongly to foetuses, and this is why many Catholics believe abortion is wrong under all circumstances. As for the societal implication, Christians could argue that allowing abortion could lead to a lesser respect for human life in general, which is disrespectful to God who gave us the divine gift of life.
From the perspective of Joseph Fletcher's situation ethics, abortion can be seen as unacceptable in many cases where the amount of agape love is not maximised. This could mean in cases where the mother could look after the child comfortably with love and care but chooses not to out of selfishness instead (one of the four functioning principles: pragmatism, would need to be applied to decide). This could result in a disappointed family and/or a depressed husband or boyfriend who wanted to father a child. Allowing abortion societally might not be the most loving thing to do because there is a great need for adoption (2 million americans each year) and so by selfishly not going through with the pregnancy, love is not maximised...