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Debate: 3-month limit on abortions

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Should abortions be limited to 3 months within conception?

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Presuming that some or most abortions should be discouraged, is 3 months a good cut-off?

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Pro

  • If there is to be common ground or compromise, it may be in fixing the point during pregnancy which there is consensus that abortions should be limited. For this one, let's temporarily put aside the two extremes of "unlimited abortion on demand" and "all abortions must be illegal".
  • Any cut-off certainly shouldn't be any later than 3 months: While one might better give the benefit of the doubt to important question of "when does life begin" to conception, by 12 weeks we have sufficient development in the fetus/baby to have a very developed and recognizable human baby form with movement, and we have heart beat and brain waves. These two, pulse and brain activity are measurements for whether one is "alive" even as an adult. So while abortion might remain legal prior to 3 months, after 12 weeks abortion should definitely be strongly discouraged or unlawful (with some minor, legitimate exceptions perhaps). There should be no exceptions for states, or vagueness about "medical necessity."
  • A woman should certainly should be aware of their pregnancy and can a perform an abortion prior to 3 months. To hold to a right much beyond that date is extreme, unnecessary and irresponsible.
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Could laws curtailing abortion have effective incentives or penalties and what would they be?

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Pro

  • Laws might offer effective financial incentives, training and penalty provisions. Presuming there was consensus on when most abortions would be discouraged, e.g. 12 weeks, law could provide a variety of incentives and penalties to discourage abortions after that point, particularly later-term abortion. For example, adoption agencies provide financial support to women who might otherwise be seeking an abortion. Financial penalties would be focused on the medical professionals that conduct the abortion. Depending on how late the abortion, the "penalty" for an individual might range from requiring attendance in classes on issues like birth control, somewhat like going to driver's training for a speeding ticket, or community service which might include counseling others in groups at risk for unwanted pregnancy. Financial penalties and jail time are reserved for participants of later term and/or repeat abortions.


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