Pro-Woman (pro-life essay)

Essay by School, 12th gradeA, March 2006

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ADOPTION KILLS CHILDREN! These are the words that were barbarically shoved in my face as I was passing Morgentaler Clinic on Hillsdale Avenue.

According to Webster's English Dictionary, the word child refers to a person between birth and adolescence. Thus, a fetus cannot be referred to as a child. However, if we were to consider a fetus to be a child, a human being with rights and freedoms, who's rights are we to protect, the mother's, or the child's? Could a fetus potentially be granted human rights?

A major fallacy perpetrated by pro-life activists is their interchangeable use of the word "person" with the terms "human", "humanity" or "human being". These terms are not synonymous. For example, pro-life activists often confuse the adjective "human" and the noun "human being," giving them the same meaning. I'm struck by the question they often pose to pro-choicers: "But isn't it human?" - as if we think a fetus is really a creature from outer space.

If you point out that a fetus consists of human tissue and DNA, pro-lifers triumphantly claim you just conceded that it's a human being. Now, a flake of dandruff from my head is human, but it is not a human being, and in this sense, neither is a fertilized egg. Anti-abortion activists would respond that a fertilized egg is not like dandruff, because the egg consists of a unique set of chromosomes that makes it a distinct human being. But with cloning, a cell from my dandruff is enough to create a new human being. Although it would have my identical genetic make-up, it would still be a unique individual, because human beings are much more than our genes. Also, both a fertilized egg and a cloned cell represent a potential, not an actual human being. It's...