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Abortion in the United States Essay

Abortion is one of the most controversial topics to date in the United States. Because of the complexity and issues involved, there are those individuals who are for abortion, and those who are against. There is neutrality that extends between the two, with those who are one the fence depending on circumstantial situations. In this paper our group of four peers debate the topic, and base a conclusion on weather women in the United States should have the right to abortion, based on the arguments themselves. Today, the reference of for and against, is better known as pro-choice and pro-life. Pro choice (abortions) refer to the political and ethical view that a woman should have complete right over her fertility, and that she should have the freedom to decide whether she wants to continue or terminate her pregnancy (Bose, 2012). According to pro-life advocates, women who demand complete control of their body should also shoulder the responsibility of preventing unwanted pregnancy, and that the result of an unplanned pregnancy, rape or incest, aborting the embryo is equivalent to punishing the unborn child (Bose, 2012).

The position that Valora has in this debate, is that it is the woman’s choice to decide whether or not to have an abortion, but also to understand that it is their responsibility to protect against unwanted pregnancies by using every available means of contraceptive, not including using abortion as if it were a contraceptive, as some pro-life advocates would claim. When evaluating risk, one should take in account of women’s feelings after an abortion. Feelings of depression and anxiety is something woman feel prior, and of course afterwards. Women sometimes choose abortions because of medical issues with the babies, or horrifying circumstances leading to the unwanted pregnancy. Henry P. David, PhD stated after conclusive research “severe psychological reactions after an abortion are infrequent”. The best indicator of your mental feelings after an abortion is to realize your feelings and mental health prior to the abortion. (ProChoice.org). Usual feelings after an abortion is relief, loss, sadness, and grief.

It is okay to grieve and you should give yourself time to grieve. Women who have had abortion may have feelings of sadness because they had to make the decision on their own without help from family and friends. Some woman may live in a home life where they are made to feel worthless because of the decision they will make. Some believe women who decide to have abortions will come down with “Post-Abortion Stress Syndrome”, which is psychological trauma or deep depression, and the American Psychological Association has found no scientific evidence that abortion leads to this type of trauma. Furthermore, experts stated after a study with the National Cancer Institute studied abortions and breast cancer, trying to see if there is any link between an abortion and breast cancer. In the end they settled that there was no link between the chances of breast cancer if you had received an abortion. In the United States, technology has made abortion safer in the last few years.

Abortions are performed with in the first 9 weeks of pregnancy. Early termination the better is for the woman, less complications. Most woman receiving their abortion within the first 9 weeks report no complications afterwards. Less than 0.5% of women have serious complication that may bring them back to be seen or hospitalized. Complication rates to rise if the abortion is decided with the pregnancy weeks of 13 and 24. The position of Tracy in this paper is that abortion should be the right of the woman. I do not believe the government or any religious authority should make this type of decision for any woman. Deciding to have an abortion is an important decision in itself and having others dictate you can or cannot choose makes the situation even more confusing.

As with most any conflicts, there are usually laws which govern the actions those directly involved, and with abortion comes some of the most well-known pieces of legislature in history. Today in the United States abortion is legal in every state due to the decision of Roe v. Wade. In this case the appellant (Roe) sued the state of Teas on the basis that personal privacy was violated unconstitutionally when the state proscribes that it is unlawful to abort a fetus, other than to save the life of a mother, advised by a licensed medical physician. The ruling decided on January 22, 1973 by the United States Supreme Court was a major milestone in the still controversial topic of abortion. According to the court “the abortion statutes void as vague and over-broadly infringing those plaintiff’s Ninth and Fourteenth Amendment right” (Roe v. Wade). On the same day of the Roe decision, another case in the state3 of Georgia was also decided on, in the case of Doe v Bolton we the state in question also was found to be in violation of the appellants constitutional rights.

The Ninth Amendment: The enumeration in the constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people. The Fourteenth Amendment: Section 1. All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside. No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or poverty, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws (Legal Information Institute). The position that Timothy has on this subject, is that a woman’s right to abortion should be that of her own decision based on the legislation’s that have been passed. A woman should be able to do with her own body as she chooses, not including using abortion as a method of birth-control.

Abortion is not all together without some medical complications. The side effects of abortion are sometimes critical. Some of them involve spotting and bleeding. You could be bleeding for past 30 to 60 days, bleeding which could be very dangerous if care was not sought from a physician. Another side affect is headaches and dizziness, fever and chills, nausea and vomiting, cramping, and diarrhea. Sometimes abortion can even lead rare instances of death. During the surgery the doctors may leave some parts of the fetus inside the body. That is what may cause the affections that may cause damage to the body and or death. The symptoms are high fever, diarrhea, cramping, foul smelling in your discharge and more. Your cervix may get injured and damaged by the surgical tools that are being used during the abortion procedure which will lead to not being able to conceive again. Women who have gone through abortion are at a greater risk of ovarian and cervical cancer. Abortion is a very short procedure but it impacts your life forever, and the after affects of abortion varies from physical and psychological effects.

Women may develop an eating disorders, or drugs on alcohol abuse, or they may have flash backs about the procedures themselves. Abortions may cause problems in relationships, and it may affect the woman’s sex life which leads to sexual dysfunction. The position that Veronica has on the subject of abortion is that she does not agree with the procedure, and the word abortion can be discussed in two different ways. Therapeutic abortion is one, where the abortion is unplanned due to medical problems with the patient’s health also unknown as miscarriage. Another way is elective abortion when it is planned. In many states planned abortions are illegal and have resulted in up to 70,000 deaths across the world every year. Many arguments support the issue on abortion. One reason why I am against abortion is that you are killing an innocent child that has nothing to do with the mistakes that one makes by having unprotected sex. You should not kill an unborn child because you are ashamed and afraid of what people might say about you. Another reason why she is against abortion is it’s against her religion.

“If I make a mistake and got pregnant, then I would have to step up to the plate and take care and raise my child. It is against my religion to have abortions, because children are a gift from God”. In conclusion of this paper, there are two sides to this debate on whether women should have the right to have abortions in the United States. The research shows that the peer group has more emphases on the pro-choice side of the debate, because the laws of abortion are designed to protect the welfare of the mother and in some cases the fetus, if there is evidence of potential danger, and the fetus may be born with severe disorders, or mother having serious complications that could threaten the mother’s life. In the past, abortions were not as safe as they are today due to advanced technologies, making abortion safer than they’ve ever been before.

Abortion is sometimes the best course because of medical issues, and sometimes due to other horrifying circumstances in which some women may become pregnant, such as rape, incest, and or other circumstances that may be legitimately valid reasons, and may lessen the quality of life for the child or mother. In 1973 it was decided by the highest court in the United States (The Supreme Court), that prior statutes infringed on the rights of women in such cases as Doe v Bolton, and Roe v Wade, making abortion legal, and the right of women to choose.

Opposing arguments have raised health related issues of having abortions such as “Post-Abortion Syndrome”, breast cancer, and depression, but upon studies conducted by the National Cancer Institute, and The American Psychological Association, there has been no scientific evidence to prove the accusations. Abortion will probably remain one of the most controversial topics known to man, but the pros, and the laws which protect, are essential in preserving individual rights of freedom in the United States.

References

Bose, D. (2012). Arguments for Pro Choice. Retrieved from Buzzle.com website: http://www.buzzle.com/articles/arguments-for-pro-choice-abortions.html. Doe v. Bolton. (n.d.). In Legal Information Institute. Retrieved from http://www.law.cornell.edu/supct/html/historics/USSC_CR_0410_0179_ZS.html. Dudley, S., Ph.D., Kruse, MS, CNM, ARNP. (2006). Evaluating the risk of complications. (n.d.). Retrieved from National Abortion Federation. Revised December 2006. http://prochoice.org/about_abortion/facts/safety_of_abortion.html. Fourteenth Amendment. (n.d.). In Legal Information Institute. Retrieved from http://www.law.cornell.edu/constitution/amendmentxiv

Heath, S. (2012, April 14). No One Called Me a Slut. Retrieved from http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/15/opinion/Sunday/having-an-abortion-when-no-one-called-me-a-slut.html. Ninth Amendment. (n.d.). In Legal Information Institute. Retrieved from http://www.law.cornell.edu/constitution/ninth_amendment/

Roe v. Wade . (n.d.). In Legal Information Institute. Retrieved from http://www.law.cornell.edu/supct/html/historics/USSC_CR_0410_0113_ZS.html. Sengupta, S. (2010, June 30). Should Abortion Be Legal. Retrieved from http://www.buzzle.com/articles/should-abortion-be-legal.html.


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