Judith Thomson in her article ‘A Defense of Abortion’ the scholar discusses philosophical and psychological issues, outlining the biases of common perception of abortion as a murder. Her primary argument relates to developmental issues, which either directly or implicitly suggest that human ontogenesis begins after the birth, so “the fetus is not a person from the moment of conception. A newly fertilized ovum, a newly implanted clump of cells, is no more a person than an acorn is an oak tree” (Thomson, 1971, p. 7).
In addition, the author positions human right for choice, more precisely, to control physical processes as a redline of the paper. Interestingly, the scholar defends women’s position in the following way: supporting the interests of the prospective child, the members of anti-abortion movement often forget that the mother is also a person, who might feel discomfort or fear when ‘housing’ her child, moreover – might be at health risk, as the lives of pregnant woman are not actually safe.
The female therefore is entitled to protect herself from such threats or eliminate them. On the one hand, the unborn individual definitely has the right to live. On the other hand, the woman unquestionably can decide whether to allow the unborn individual to use her organs, as no-one can be forced to allow physical intrusion. The right for life, she continues, relates precisely to the right not to be killed unjustly, but abortion is in reality a murder, providing the eradication of the health threat (pain, at least).
The independence of fetus, as Thomson argues, is extremely doubtful, because such prospective children need the women’s physical resources, a house, in Thomson’s words. Finally, the scholar denies the permissibility of abortion and restricts the right for killing the unborn to the presence of health threats, rape or fetus pathology, as Minimally Decent Samaritanism requires of mother safe, sound and healthy reproduction, so the fact of reluctance to bear a child is not enough for abortion, as this phenomenon is viewed as indecent and immoral in the cases behind the three aforementioned conditions.
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