Abortion debate: Wikis


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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The abortion debate refers to discussion and controversy surrounding the moral and legal status of abortion. The two main groups involved in the abortion debate are the pro-choice movement, and the pro-life movement. Each movement has, with varying results, sought to influence public opinion and to attain legal support for its position. In Canada, for example, abortion is available on demand,[1] while in Nicaragua abortions are illegal.[2] In some cases, the abortion debate has led to the use of violence.



Many of the terms used in the debate are seen as political framing: terms used to validate one's own stance while invalidating the opposition's. For example, the labels "pro-choice" and "pro-life" imply endorsement of widely held values such as liberty and freedom, while suggesting that the opposition must be "anti-choice" or "anti-life" (alternatively "pro-coercion" or "pro-death").[3] Such terms gloss over the underlying issue of which choice or life is being considered and whose choice or what kind of life is deemed most important.[4]

Appeals are often made in the abortion debate to the rights of the fetus, pregnant woman, or other parties. Such appeals can generate confusion if the type of rights is not specified (whether civil, natural, or otherwise) or if it is simply assumed that the right appealed to takes precedence over all other competing rights (an example of begging the question, defined as, "when a proposition which requires proof is assumed without proof").[5]

The appropriate terms with which to designate the human organism prior to birth are also debated. The medical terms "embryo" and "fetus" are seen by pro-life advocates as dehumanizing[6][7]. The terms "baby" and "unborn child" are seen by pro-choice advocates as emotionalized. Similarly, there is debate between use of the terms "woman" and "mother".

Political debate

Politics refers to the processes, defined and limited through legal documents, by which decisions (laws) are made in governments. In politics, rights are the protections and privileges legally granted to citizens by the government. Regarding abortion law, the political debate usually surrounds a right to privacy, and when or how a government may regulate abortion. For example, there is abundant debate regarding the extent of abortion regulation. Some pro-choice advocates argue that it should be illegal for governments to regulate abortion any more than other medical practices.[8] Some pro-life advocates argue that governments should be permitted to regulate abortions after the 20th week,[9] viability,[10] or the second trimester.[11] Some want to regulate all abortions, starting from implantation.[12]


Time has stated that the issue of bodily privacy is "the core" of the abortion debate.[13] In political terms, privacy can be understood as a condition in which one is not observed or disturbed by government.[14] Privacy, in relation to abortion, is defined as the ability of a woman to "decide what happens to her own body".[13]

While governments are allowed to invade the privacy of their citizens in some cases, they are expected to protect privacy in all cases lacking a compelling state interest . Abortions are recognized as being private, but are criticized for involving the loss of human life. The pro-life position argues that abortion regulation is valid because the state interest in protecting prenatal life is compelling. The pro-choice position argues either that there is no state interest in regulating abortion, or that the woman's privacy is a more compelling interest.

Albert Wynn and Gloria Feldt at the U.S. Supreme Court to rally in support of Roe v. Wade.

U.S. judicial involvement

Roe v. Wade struck down state laws banning abortion in 1973. Over 20 cases have addressed abortion law in the United States, all of which upheld Roe v. Wade. Since Roe, abortion has been legal throughout the country, but states have placed varying regulations on it, from requiring parental involvement in a minor's abortion to restricting late-term abortions.

Legal criticisms of the Roe decision address many points, among them are several suggesting that it is an overreach of judicial powers,[15] or that it was not properly based on the Constitution,[16] or that it is an example of judicial activism and that it should be overturned so that abortion law can be decided by legislatures.[17] Justice Potter Stewart, who joined with the majority, viewed the Roe opinion as "legislative" and asked that more consideration be paid to state legislatures.[18]

Candidates competing for the Democratic nomination for the 2008 Presidential election cited Gonzales v. Carhart as judicial activism.[19] In upholding the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act, Carhart is the first judicial opinion upholding a legal barrier to a specific abortion procedure.

"Where, in the performance of its judicial duties, the Court decides a case in such a way as to resolve the sort of intensely divisive controversy reflected in Roe and those rare, comparable cases, its [505 U.S. 833, 867] decision has a dimension that the resolution of the normal case does not carry. It is the dimension present whenever the Court's interpretation of the Constitution calls the contending sides of a national controversy to end their national division by accepting a common mandate rooted in the Constitution [...W]hatever the premises of opposition may be, only the most convincing justification under accepted standards of precedent could suffice to demonstrate that a later decision overruling the first was anything but a surrender to political pressure and an unjustified repudiation of the principle on which the Court staked its authority in the first instance." -Majority opinion of Planned Parenthood v. Casey[20][21],

Quite to the contrary, by foreclosing all democratic outlet for the deep passions this issue arouses, by banishing the issue from the political forum that gives all participants, even the losers, the satisfaction of a fair hearing and an honest fight, by continuing the imposition of a rigid national rule instead of allowing for regional differences, the Court merely prolongs and intensifies the anguish [over abortion]. - Justice Antonin Scalia, "concurring in the judgment in part and dissenting in part"[21]

"No to abortion" at a 2007 meeting with Pope Benedict XVI in São Paulo, Brazil. The crowd have both arms raised in a prayer gesture.

Ethical debate

Ethics refers to "moral philosophy", or the study of values and the analysis of right and wrong. The ethical debate over abortion usually surrounds the issues of whether a fetus has rights, in particular a right to life, and whether the pregnant woman's rights over her own body justify abortion even if the fetus has a right to life. For many, there is a strong correlation between religion and abortion ethics.


Pro-life supporters argue that abortion is morally wrong on the basis that a fetus is an innocent human being.[22] Others reject this position by drawing a distinction between human being and human person, arguing that while the fetus is innocent and biologically human, it is not a person with a right to life.[23] In support of this distinction, some propose a list of criteria as markers of personhood. For example, Mary Ann Warren suggests consciousness (at least the capacity to feel pain), reasoning, self motivation, the ability to communicate, and self-awareness.[24] According to Warren, a being need not exhibit all of these criteria to qualify as a person with a right to life, but if a being exhibits none of them (or perhaps only one), then it is certainly not a person. Warren concludes that as the fetus satisfies only one criterion, consciousness (and this only after it becomes susceptible to pain),[25] the fetus is not a person and abortion is therefore morally permissible. Other philosophers apply similar criteria, concluding that a fetus lacks a right to life because it lacks self-consciousness,[26] rationality,[27] and autonomy.[28] These lists diverge over precisely which features confer a right to life,[29] but tend to propose various developed psychological features not found in fetuses.

Critics of this position typically argue that the proposed criteria for personhood would disqualify two classes of born human beings — reversibly comatose patients, and human infants — from having a right to life, since they, like fetuses, are not self-conscious, do not communicate, and so on.[30] Defenders of the proposed criteria may respond that the reversibly comatose do satisfy the relevant criteria because they "retain all their unconscious mental states".[31] Warren concedes that infants are not "persons" by her proposed criteria,[32] and on that basis she and others concede that infanticide could be morally acceptable under some circumstances (for example if the infant is severely disabled[33] or in order to save the lives of several other infants[34]). Critics may see such concessions as an indication that the right to life cannot be adequately defined by reference to developed psychological features.

An alternative approach is to base personhood or the right to life on a being's natural or inherent capacities. On this approach, a being essentially has a right to life if it has a genetic propensity or natural capacity to develop the relevant psychological features; and, since human beings do have this natural capacity, they essentially have a right to life beginning at conception (or whenever they come into existence).[35] Critics of this position argue that mere genetic potential is not a plausible basis for respect (or for the right to life), and that basing a right to life on natural capacities would lead to the counterintuitive position that anencephalic infants, irreversibly comatose patients, and brain-dead patients kept alive on a medical ventilator, are all persons with a right to life.[36]

Members of Bound4LIFE in Washington, D.C. symbolically cover their mouths with red tape.

Philosophers such as Aquinas use the concept of individuation. They argue that abortion is not permissible from the point at which individual human identity is realised. Anthony Kenny argues that this can be derived from everyday beliefs and language and one can legitimately say "if my mother had had an abortion six months into her pregnancy, she would have killed me" then one can reasonably infer that at six months the "me" in question would have been an existing person with a valid claim to life. Since division of the zygote into twins through the process of monozygotic twinning can occur until the fourteenth day of pregnancy, Kenny argues that individual identity is obtained at this point and thus abortion is not permissible after two weeks.[37]

Argument from uncertainty

Some pro-life supporters argue that if there is uncertainty as to whether the fetus has a right to life, then having an abortion is equivalent to consciously taking the risk of killing another. According to this argument, if it is not known for certain whether something (such as the fetus) has a right to life, then it is reckless, and morally wrong, to treat that thing as if it lacks a right to life (for example by killing it).[38] This would place abortion in the same moral category as manslaughter (if it turns out that the fetus has a right to life) or certain forms of criminal negligence (if it turns out that the fetus does not have a right to life).[39]

David Boonin replies that if this kind of argument were correct, then the killing of nonhuman animals and plants would also be morally wrong, because (Boonin contends) it is not known for certain that such beings lack a right to life.[40] Boonin also argues that arguments from uncertainty fail because the mere fact that one might be mistaken in finding certain arguments persuasive (for example, arguments for the claim that the fetus lacks a right to life) does not mean that one should act contrary to those arguments or assume them to be mistaken.[41]


The book Abortion and the Conscience of the Nation presents the argument that abortion involves unjust discrimination against the unborn. According to this argument, those who deny that fetuses have a right to life do not value all human life, but instead select arbitrary characteristics (such as particular levels of physical or psychological development) as giving some human beings more value or rights than others.[42]

In contrast, philosophers who define the right to life by reference to particular levels of physical or psychological development typically maintain that such characteristics are morally relevant,[43] and reject the assumption that all human life necessarily has value (or that membership in the species Homo sapiens is in itself morally relevant).[44]


The argument of deprivation states that abortion is morally wrong because it deprives the fetus of a valuable future.[45] On this account, killing an adult human being is wrong because it deprives the victim of a future like ours—a future containing highly valuable or desirable experiences, activities, projects, and enjoyments.[46] If a being has such a future, then (according to the argument) killing that being would seriously harm it and hence would be seriously wrong.[47] But since a fetus does have such a future, the "overwhelming majority" of deliberate abortions are placed in the "same moral category" as killing an innocent adult human being.[48] Not all abortions are unjustified according to this argument: abortion would be justified if the same justification could be applied to killing an adult human.

Criticism of this line of reasoning follows several threads. Some reject the argument on grounds relating to personal identity, holding that the fetus is not the same entity as the adult into which it will develop, and thus that the fetus does not have a "future like ours" in the required sense.[49] Others grant that the fetus has a future like ours, but argue that being deprived of this future is not a significant harm or a significant wrong to the fetus, because there are relatively few psychological connections (continuations of memory, belief, desire and the like) between the fetus as it is now and the adult into which it will develop.[50] Another criticism is that the argument creates inequalities in the wrongness of killing:[51] as the futures of some people (for example the young, bright and healthy) appear to be far more valuable or desirable than the futures of other people (for example the old, depressed and sick), the argument appears to entail that some killings are far more wrong than others, or that some people have a far stronger right to life than others—a conclusion that is taken to be counterintuitive or unacceptable. Finally, some argue that as gametes have a similar potential to the fetus, the argument would entail that contraception or even choosing not to have sex is as wrong as the killing of an adult human being—a conclusion that is similarly taken to be counterintuitive or unacceptable.

Bodily rights

An argument first presented by Judith Jarvis Thomson states that even if the fetus has a right to life, abortion is morally permissible because a woman has a right to control her own body. Thomson's variant of this argument draws an analogy between forcing a woman to continue an unwanted pregnancy and forcing a person's body to be used as a dialysis machine for another person suffering from kidney failure. It is argued that just as it would be permissible to "unplug" and thereby cause the death of the person who is using one's kidneys, so it is permissible to abort the fetus (who similarly, it is said, has no right to use one's body against one's will).

Critics of this argument generally argue that there are morally relevant disanalogies between abortion and the kidney failure scenario. For example, it is argued that the fetus is the woman's child as opposed to a mere stranger;[52] that abortion kills the fetus rather than merely letting it die;[53] and that in the case of pregnancy arising from voluntary intercourse, the woman has either tacitly consented to the fetus using her body,[54] or has a duty to allow it to use her body since she herself is responsible for its need to use her body.[55] Some writers defend the analogy against these objections, arguing that the disanalogies are morally irrelevant or do not apply to abortion in the way critics have claimed.[56]

Alternative scenarios have been put forth as more accurate and realistic representations of the moral issues present in abortion. John Noonan proposes the scenario of a family who was found to be liable for frostbite finger loss suffered by a dinner guest whom they refused to allow to stay overnight, although it was very cold outside and the guest showed signs of being sick. It is argued that just as it would not be permissible to refuse temporary accommodation for the guest to protect them from physical harm, it would not be permissible to refuse temporary accommodation of a fetus.[57]

Other critics claim that there is a difference between artificial and extraordinary means of preservation, such as medical treatment, kidney dialysis, and blood transfusions, and normal and natural means of preservation, such as gestation, childbirth, and breastfeeding. They argue that if a baby was born into an environment in which there was no replacement available for her mother's breast milk, and the baby would either breastfeed or starve, the mother would have to allow the baby to breastfeed. But the mother would never have to give the baby a blood transfusion, no matter what the circumstances were. The difference between breastfeeding in that scenario and blood transfusions is the difference between using your body as a kidney dialysis machine, and gestation and childbirth.[58][59][60][61][62][63]

Religious Beliefs

Some pro-life Christians support their views with Scripture references such as that of Luke 1:15; Jeremiah 1:4-5; Genesis 25:21-23; Matthew 1:18; and Psalm 139:13-16. Roman Catholics in particular believe that human life begins at conception as well as the right to life, so abortion is considered immoral and a violation of the Fifth Commandment: "You shall not kill" (Exodus 20:13).[64] The Church of England also considers abortion to be morally wrong, though their position is not as firm as that of Roman Catholicism.[65]

See also


  1. ^ "abortion on demand". Dictionary.com. http://dictionary.reference.com/search?q=abortion-on-demand&r=66. Retrieved 2007-05-01. "(1) the right of a woman to have an abortion during the first six months of a pregnancy; (2) an abortion performed on a woman solely at her own request"  
  2. ^ http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/7041048.stm
  3. ^ Handbook of Constructionist Research, Holstein and Gubrium, Guilford Press, 2008
  4. ^ http://www.ordinary-gentlemen.com/2009/06/ah-abortion/ Retrieved 15 June 2009
  5. ^ James Welton. A Manual of Logic. (1905), p. 279.
  6. ^ Brennan 'Dehumanizing the vulnerable' 2000
  7. ^ Princeton Progressive Review 1986 http://groups.csail.mit.edu/mac/users/rauch/nvp/consistent/naomi_wolf.html
  8. ^ "Abortion". Positions. British Columbia Civil Liberties Association. http://www.bccla.org/positions/privateoff/72abortion.html. Retrieved 2007-05-24. "…rights call for complete legal freedom to secure an abortion, in the sense that the legal status of abortion should be the same as that of other medical services that a doctor provides to a patient"  
  9. ^ "Abortion". Where We Stand—CMA Position Papers. California Medical Association. December 1973. pp. 43. http://www.pubmedcentral.nih.gov/pagerender.fcgi?artid=1455357&pageindex=2. Retrieved 2007-05-24. "Good medical practice indicates that abortion should not be performed after the 20th week of pregnancy"  
  10. ^ Lee, Ellie; Ann Furedi (February 2002). "Abortion issues today - a position paper" (PDF). Legal Issues for Pro-Choice Opinion - Abortion Law in Practice. University of Kent, Canterbury, CT2 7NY, UK. pp. 2. http://www.kent.ac.uk/sspssr/research/papers/legalpro.pdf. Retrieved 2007-05-24. "While most people have no difficulty accepting the legality of abortion at early stages of pregnancy, fewer are so sure about their position as pregnancy progresses – especially when the fetus is perceived to be 'viable'"  
  11. ^ "Abortion". Positions. American Medical Women's Association. 2000. http://www.amwa-doc.org/index.cfm?objectId=0A5BF4D4-D567-0B25-58C7E8584C98D43B. Retrieved 2007-05-24. "The 1973 Supreme court decision Roe v. Wade struck a fair balance between the responsibility of the state to protect a woman's right to make personal medical decisions and the responsibility of the state to protect the potentially viable third trimester fetus"  
  12. ^ Johnston, Wm. Robert (2002-12-24). "Evaluation of the BGCT Christian Life Commission's "Abortion and the Christian Life"". Committee Report. First Baptist Church, Brownsville, Texas. http://www.johnstonsarchive.net/baptist/rptbgctc.html. Retrieved May 2007. "…the unique value that human life has, as a gift from God, regardless of stage of development or physical health, from the point of conception to the point of physical death"  
  13. ^ a b "Abortion and Privacy". TIME. 1972-03-13. http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,903358,00.html?promoid=googlep. Retrieved 2007-05-25.  
  14. ^ "Privacy". Compact Oxford English Dictionary. AskOxford.com. http://www.askoxford.com/concise_oed/privacy?view=uk. Retrieved 2007-05-24.  
  15. ^ William Saletan (May/June 2005). "Unbecoming Justice Blackmun". Legal Affairs. http://www.legalaffairs.org/issues/May-June-2005/feature_saleton_mayjun05.msp.  
  16. ^ Ely, John Hart. (1973). The Wages of Crying Wolf. Yale Law Journal. http://www.timothypcarney.com/wages-wolf.htm.  
  17. ^ Romney, Mitt (2005-07-26). "Why I Vetoed Contraception Bill". The Boston Globe. http://www.boston.com/yourlife/health/women/articles/2005/07/26/why_i_vetoed_contraception_bill/. Retrieved 2007-05-24. "…avoiding the bitter battles engendered by 'one size fits all' judicial pronouncements. A federalist approach would allow such disputes to be settled by the citizens and elected representatives of each state, and appropriately defer to democratic governance"  
  18. ^ Kmiec, Douglas W. (1996-04-22). "Testimony of Douglas W. Kmiec". Judiciary Committee, U.S. House of Representatives. http://members.aol.com/abtrbng2/roememos.txt. Retrieved 2007-05-24.  
  19. ^ Hossain, Farhana; Ben Werschkul (2007). "The Presidential Candidates on Abortion". New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/ref/washington/ABORTIONPOSITIONS.html#democrats. Retrieved 2007-05-23.  
  20. ^ Thomas R. Kearns. History, Memory, and the Law. University of Michigan Press. http://books.google.com/books?id=J_9YVh0QmUQC&pg=PA8&dq=History,+memory,++controversy+to+end+their+national+division&lr=#v=onepage&q=&f=false.  
  21. ^ a b Planned Parenthood v. Casey, 505 U.S. 833 .
  22. ^ Warren, 1973
  23. ^ Warren 1973: 457. See also Tooley 1972: 40-43; Singer 2000: 126-28 and 155-156; and John Locke. The term person may be used to denote a psychological property (being rational and self-conscious), a moral property (having a right to life), or both.
  24. ^ Warren 1973: 458.
  25. ^ Warren 1973: 458-459
  26. ^ Tooley 1972: 44.
  27. ^ Singer 2000: 128 and 156-157.
  28. ^ McMahan 2002: 260
  29. ^ It is similarly unclear which features one must have a natural capacity for, in order to have a right to life (cf Schwarz 1990: 105-109), or which features constitute a "future like ours".
  30. ^ Marquis 1989: 197; Schwarz 1990: 89
  31. ^ Stretton 2004: 267, original emphasis; see also Singer 2000: 137; Boonin 2003: 64-70
  32. ^ Warren 1982
  33. ^ Singer 2000: 186-193
  34. ^ McMahan 2002: 359-360
  35. ^ Lee 1996 and 2004: Schwarz 1990: 91-93.
  36. ^ Stretton 2004: 274-281.
  37. ^ A. Kenny, Reason and Religion: Essays in Philosophical Theology (Oxford: Basil Blackwell), 1987
  38. ^ Schwarz 1990: 58-9; Beckwith 2007: 60-1; "Abortion and the Conscience of the Nation" (1983), by Ronald Reagan, William P. Clark, Brian P. Johnston, Wanda Franz. New Regency Pub, ISBN 0964112531
  39. ^ "Three approaches to abortion" (2002), by Peter Kreeft, ISBN 0898709156
  40. ^ Boonin 2003: 314-15
  41. ^ Boonin 2003: 323
  42. ^ "Abortion and the Conscience of the Nation" (1983), by Ronald Reagan, William P. Clark, Brian P. Johnston, Wanda Franz. New Regency Pub, ISBN 0964112531
  43. ^ Singer 2000: 217-18; McMahan 2002: 242-3; Boonin 2003: 126
  44. ^ Singer 2000: 221-2; McMahan 2002: 214; Boonin 2003: 25
  45. ^ Marquis 1989. See also Stone 1987.
  46. ^ Marquis 1989: 189-190
  47. ^ Marquis 1989: 190. The type of wrongness appealed to here is presumptive or prima facie wrongness: it may be overridden in exceptional circumstances.
  48. ^ Marquis 1989: 183.
  49. ^ McMahan 2002: ch 1.
  50. ^ McMahan 2002: 271; Stretton 2004: 171-179
  51. ^ Stretton 2004: 250-260; see also McMahan 2002: 234-235 and 271
  52. ^ Schwarz 1990; McMahan 2002
  53. ^ Schwarz 1990; McMahan 2002; Lee 1996
  54. ^ Warren 1973
  55. ^ McMahan 2002
  56. ^ Boonin 2003: ch 4
  57. ^ "The Morality of abortion: legal and historical perspectives" John T. Noonan, Harvard University Press, 1970 ISBN 0674587251
  58. ^ Poupard, Dr Richard J (2007). "Christian Research Journal, volume 30, number 4 - Suffer the violinist: Why the pro-abortion argument from bodily autonomy fails" (PDF). http://www.equipresources.org/atf/cf/%7B9C4EE03A-F988-4091-84BD-F8E70A3B0215%7D/JAA025.pdf. Retrieved 2009-10-25.  
  59. ^ G Koukl & S Klusendorf, "Making Abortion Unthinkable: The Art of Pro-Life Persuasion" STR Press, California (2001) p. 86.
  60. ^ Bernard Nathanson & Richard Ostling "Aborting America". Double Day & Company, Inc.: Garden City, 1979 (ISBN 0-385-14461-X)
  61. ^ Peter Kreeft, David Boonin. (2005). "Is Abortion Morally Justifiable in a Free Society?" Public debate at Yale University. [Audio]. http://www.isi.org/lectures/lectures.aspx?SBy=search&SSub=title&SFor=Is%20Abortion%20Morally%20Justifiable%20in%20a%20Free%20Society?: Intercollegiate Studies Institute.  
  62. ^ John Arthur 'The Unfinished Constitution: Philosophy and Constitutional Practice', Wadsworth, 1989, p198-200.
  63. ^ Beckwith, Francis (March 1992). "International Philosophical Quarterly Vol 32 Issue 1 - Personal Bodily Rights, Abortion, and Unplugging the Violinist" (PDF). http://homepage.mac.com/francis.beckwith/Thomson.pdf. Retrieved 2009-10-10.  
  64. ^ "Article 5: The Fifth Commandment". Catechism of the Catholic Church. http://www.vatican.va/archive/catechism/p3s2c2a5.htm. Retrieved 3 August 2009.  
  65. ^ "Abortion: the Church of England view". Religion & Ethics. http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/religions/christianity/christianethics/abortion_1.shtml. Retrieved 3 August 2009.  


  • Boonin, David (2003). A Defense of Abortion. Cambridge Studies in Philosophy and Public Policy. Boulder: University of Colorado. ISBN 0521520355.  
  • Lee, Patrick (1996). Abortion and Unborn Human Life. Catholic University of America Press. ISBN 0813208467.  
  • Lee, Patrick (June 2004). "The Pro-Life Argument from Substantial Identity: A Defense". Bioethics 18 (3): 249. doi:10.1111/j.1467-8519.2004.00393.x. Lay summary – Blackwell Synergy (2007-05-25).  
  • Mappes, Thomas A.; David DeGrazia (2001). Biomedical Ethics. McGraw-Hill. ISBN 0072303654.  
  • Marquis, Don (April 1989). "Why Abortion is Immoral". The Journal of Philosophy 86 (4): 183–202. doi:10.2307/2026961. Lay summary – JSTOR (2007-05-25).  
  • McMahan, Jeff (2002). The Ethics of Killing: Problems at the Margins of Life. Oxford Ethics Series. New York: Oxford University Press. ISBN 0195169824.  
  • Warren, Mary Ann (1973). "On the Moral and Legal Status of Abortion". in Thomas A. Mappes. Biomedical Ethics. David DeGrazia. McGraw-Hill. pp. 456–461.  
  • Warren, Mary Ann (1982). "Postscript on Infanticide". in Thomas A. Mappes. Biomedical Ethics. David DeGrazia. McGraw-Hill. pp. 461–463.  
  • Schwarz, Stephen D. (1990). The Moral Question of Abortion. Chicago: Loyola University Press. ISBN 0829406239.  
  • Singer, Peter (2000). Writings on an Ethical Life. Ecco (HarperCollins). ISBN 0060198389.  
  • Stone, Jim (December 1987). "Why Potentiality Matters". Canadian Journal of Philosophy 17 (4): 815–830.  
  • Stretton, Dean (June 2004). "Essential Properties and the Right to Life: A Response to Lee". Bioethics 18 (3): 264–282. doi:10.1111/j.1467-8519.2004.00394.x. Lay summary – Blackwell Synergy (2007-05-25).  
  • Tooley, Michael (1972). "Abortion and Infanticide". Philosophy and Public Affairs 2 (1): 37–65. Lay summary – JSTOR (2007-05-25).  

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