I Was Once a Fetus: That is Why Abortion is Wrong

Abstract
          I am going to give an argument showing that abortion is wrong in exactly the same circumstances in which it is wrong to kill an adult. To argue further that abortion is always wrong would require showing that it is always wrong to kill an adult or that the circumstances in which it is not wrong--say, capital punishment--never befall a fetus. Such an argument will be beyond the scope of this paper, but since it is uncontroversial that it is wrong to kill an adult human being for the sorts of reasons for which most abortions are performed, it follows that most abortions are wrong.           The argument has three parts, of decreasing difficulty. The most difficult will be the first part where I will argue that I was once a fetus and before that I was an embryo. This argument will rest on simple considerations of the metaphysics of identity. The next part of the argument will be to show that it would have been at least as wrong to have killed me before I was born as it would be to kill me now. I will argue for this in more than one way, but the guiding intuition is clear: if you kill me earlier, the victim is the same but the harm is greater since I am deprived of more the earlier I die. Finally, the easiest part of the argument will be that I am not relevantly different from anybody else and the fetus which I was was not relevantly different from any other human fetus, and so the argument applies equally well to all fetuses.           The advantage of this argument over others is that it avoids talking of personhood, except in one of the independent arguments in part 2.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index Translate to english
 
Download options
PhilPapers Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 11,371
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Citations of this work BETA
Similar books and articles
Ezio Di Nucci (2014). Fathers and Abortion. Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 39 (4):444-458.
Ingmar Persson (2004). Two Act-Omission Paradoxes. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 104 (2):147–162.
Andrew J. Peach (2005). A Natural Response to Boonin. International Philosophical Quarterly 45 (3):357-376.
Analytics

Monthly downloads

Added to index

2010-12-22

Total downloads

73 ( #19,485 of 1,102,819 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

1 ( #296,987 of 1,102,819 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature


Discussion
Start a new thread
Order:
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.