Abortion - Legality, Morality and The Catholic Church. This paper discusses the legal and moral issues surrounding aborion, also the veiw of the catholic church.

Essay by nerina275College, Undergraduate August 2002

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The 1973 United States Supreme Court Roe vs. Wade decisin, while providing for some semblance of legal structure to the political debate over abortion, has led to further question within moral and religious aspects of our society. In that decision, the Court found that a woman had the right to choose whether or not to abort a pregnancy within certain constaints; however, if a fetus were a person, accourding to the Court, abortion would be found impermissible. While this decision made an attempt at establishing a legal precedent, from a moral and religious standpoint, it is wrong. Upon the moment of conception, the human embryo is a person; and as a result, ensoulment of the fetus occurs simultaneously, making it\'s abortion an act at odds with moral rectitude, and a sin within the teachings of the Catholic Church.

In accordance with the 1973 decision, \"the Court believed that the State has a compelling interest in protecting potential human life at viability\" (Kamm 16).

Viability can be defined in terms of the Court\'s use as the capacity of the fetus to live outside of the womb, with the aid of mechanical support. While this issue of viability exists as the main distinguishing element the Court uses to grant fetal life the label of personhood, the actual point of viability is one that can be debated.

Viability has been pointed out to be a function of technology, and is therefore a variable instance that cannot legitimately be defined as any consistent chronological point in a pregnancy. Furthermore, as viability exists as a function of technology, its point of instance could theoretically be defined very early in the pregnancy, and would constantly change with developing technologies. This being said, it is hardly possible to place human rights upon a variable instance with debatable...