Essay by krosek54University, Bachelor'sA-, November 2007

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During the past fifty years, abortion has become one of the most controversial and debatable subjects around the world. Encompassing human interaction where ethics, emotions and law come together, abortion poses a moral, social and medical dilemma that often affects many. Though there is a vast spectrum of convictions when it comes to the subject of abortion, the two categories of people that generally take center stage are "pro-choice" and "pro-life". A pro-choice advocate generally feels that the decision to abort a pregnancy rests solely on the mother, while a pro-life advocate generally holds that from the moment of conception, the embryo or fetus is in fact a living person. As the fetus does not have the means to argue in its own defense, it thus imposes a moral obligation to preserve it upon those who are able to represent it's rights. According to most pro-life supporters, failure to do so is considered murder.

In her article, A Defense of Abortion, Professor of Philosophy Judith Jarvis Thomson offers a number analogies to support her pro-choice rationalizations. Though some of her hypothetical situations are flawed and slightly absurd, she portrays some very valid arguments.

Let us first examine Thomson's unconscious violinist analogy, in which she aims to extract a certain problematic moral conclusion. She states:

You wake up in the morning and find yourself back to back in bed with an unconscious violinist. A famous unconscious violinist. He has been found to have a fatal kidney ailment, and the Society of Music Lovers has canvassed all the available medical records and found that you alone have the right blood type to help. They have therefore kidnapped you, and last night the violinist's circulatory system was plugged into yours, so that your kidneys can be used to extract poisons...