Arguments for and against the legalization of abortion


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Free association to the word abortion would probably yield a fantastic array of emotional responses: pain, relief, murder, crime, fear, freedom, genocide, guilt, sin. Which of these associations people have no doubt reflects their age, marital status, religion or nationality. To a thirty-five-year-old feminist, the primary response might be freedom and relief; to an unmarried American college girl, fear and pain; to a catholic priest, murder and sin; to some black militants, genocide. As a result of the Supreme Court rulings in Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton, 93 S. Ct. 705 (1973), every woman in the United States has the same right to abortion during the first three months of pregnancy as she has to any other minor surgery. These rulings have been received differently throughout society/ While abortion proponents have viewed the rulings with exhilaration, pro-life advocates consider the decision a monumental error which will result in chaos. The purpose of this paper was to explore the arguments for and against the legalization of abortion. This study includes an analysis of the Supreme Court rulings on abortion and the definitions, assumptions, and perspectives that abortion proponents and pro-life advocates have internalized in defense of their diametrically opposed views toward abortion. This study will include the judicial developments which preceded the Supreme Court rulings. The affirming and dissenting opinions of the Supreme Court Justices will be discussed with emphasis being placed on the basic principles represented by those opinions. A review of the literature was the major procedure used to gather information. Data extracted from the Supreme Court rulings, professional journals, governments, periodicals and private organization decision papers provided background information and contemporary thought upon which an objective analysis could be based.



Abortion--United States., Abortion--Law and legislation.