Law does not allow abortions, and religious figures play a vital role

Thesis: There are many reasons why women abort pregnancies, and many side effects that result from abortion. There are also two points of view on abortion. The first is against abortion, and presents very reasonable arguments; and the second is with abortion, and also gives a few feasible reasons. In particular, there is much controversy in the Middle East and in Lebanon, where the law does not allow abortions, and religious figures play a vital role in directing people towards a certain position on the subject.

Reasons why women does abortion.

Side effect and danger of abortion

Abortion in the Middle east

Countries discuss abortion law

Abortion in Lebanon

Views on abortion in the world

Countries with abortion

Countries against abortion

Religious views

Church of England

The Roman Catholic’s point of view

Sayyed Muhammad Hussein Fadlallah’s point of view

General overview for Pro-abortion and the use of Contraception

Conclusion: Restatement of thesis, deduction that abortion is morally, religiously, and socially wrong.

Abortion: Should Women Keep It?

Abortion is a topic that is very debatable in our world today. Abortion, by definition, is: “a procedure that ends a pregnancy by removing the fetus and placenta from the mother’s womb (uterus)." (nlm.nih.gov)There are many reasons why women abort pregnancies, and many side effects that result from abortion. There are also two points of view on abortion. The first is against abortion, and presents very reasonable arguments; and the second is with abortion, and also gives a few feasible reasons. In particular, there is much controversy in the Middle East and in Lebanon, where the law does not allow abortions, and religious figures play a vital role in directing people towards a certain position on the subject.

According to Medline Plus, there are many reasons why women choose to have abortions. First, the fetus might have a birth defect or genetic problem. The child might also harm the woman’s health, or might be the result of rape or incest. The most common reason is the woman’s unwillingness to have a child. These reasons and many more might induce fear or hesitation from the woman’s side, and thus result in abortion.

But, abortion has many side effects and after effects. Some of the side effects are: “damage to the womb or cervix, emotional or psychological distress, excessive bleeding, infection of the uterus or fallopian tubes". (nlm.nih.gov)During surgery, bleeding and infection may occur, and the anesthesia might cause breathing distress and violent reactions to the medications given in the operation. After the procedure, there are a few after effects. During a normal, professional abortion, risks of danger are very rare. The most common form of danger is the psychological trauma that a woman might experience after the procedure, known as PASS (Post Abortion Stress Syndrome)., “Some women […] may have a more difficult time with […] the emotional and physical recovery of the process. […] After an abortion it’s possible that a woman will have some normal feelings of grief, guilt, sadness, crying and loss." (afterabortion.com)On the other hand, if the abortion is not a professional one; in other words not done in a clinic by a specialist, there are many complications such as uncontrolled heavy bleeding, pelvic inflammatory disease, extreme pain, and, in some cases, infertility. There is also the case of unsafe abortion, which increases the risk and intensity of the side and after effects, and also: “Unsafe abortion kills 70,000 mothers a year". (Beirut-online.net)

Abortion in the Middle East is a rising phenomenon. Turkey is considered the most liberal out of all of the Middle Eastern countries when it comes to abortion laws. Turkish law allows abortion in the following cases: “to save the life of the woman, to preserve physical health, to preserve mental health, rape or incest, fetal impairment, economic or social reasons, available on request." (issues.co.nz)We can see clearly that in Turkey, abortion is a very normal concept, where even if the woman simply asks for an abortion, it is legal. On the other hand, countries like Egypt, Iran, Syria, and Yemen, only allow abortion if the woman’s life is in mortal danger. All other reasons for abortion are not accepted, and if performed, are considered illegal.

Specifically in Lebanon, “The Lebanese Penal Code of 1943 defined abortion as illegal under all circumstances. However, a presidential decree passed in 1969 permits curative abortion in cases where it is the only way to save a pregnant woman’s life, in which case the procedure can be performed even over the objections of the woman’s husband or relatives (the woman, however, must give consent, unless she is unconscious)." (nowlebanon.com) This shows that the Lebanese law with respect to abortion is still considered very strict on an international level. Any person who performs an abortion in Lebanon is sentenced to one to three years of imprisonment, a woman who induces her own abortion or miscarriage is sentenced to six months imprisonment, and a doctor who performs an abortion without consent is sentenced to five years of hard labor.

There are two opposite views on abortion in the world today. There are a lot of countries and people who are against the idea of abortion. Some of the countries against abortion under normal circumstances are the following: Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Bahamas, Belize, Bolivia, Brazil, Cayman Islands, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominica, Ecuador, Grenada, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Jamaica, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Puerto Rico, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Surinam, Trinidad and Tobago, Uruguay, and Venezuela. (choike.org) All of these countries have very diverse opinions as to why abortion should be illegal. For example, “On Nov. 16, 2009 the legislature of the Mexican coastal state of Veracruz passed a law declaring that life begins at conception and ends at natural death."(choike.org)This is one form of interpretation that people take in order to prevent abortion.

Another form of interpretation is religion. All monotheistic religions abhor the notion of abortion. According to the Church of England, abortion is “gravely contrary to the moral law" (BBC.co.uk). The Roman Catholic view states that life begins when the embryo is formed, and abortion will lead to excommunication from the church. Pope John Paul II called abortion murder. (BBC.co.uk) Sayyed Muhammed Hussein Fadlallah stated that: “Abortion is prohibited in Islam starting from the stage in which the ovum is fertilized and becomes stuck to the wall of the womb, since at this stage the life of the fetus starts. Thus, abortion is prohibited because life should be respected from its very beginning. We mean by life here, the life in its normal circumstances that are found in the mother’s body." (English.bayynat.org.lb) As we can see, both the Christian and the Muslim faiths do not allow abortion in any form, even in the earliest stages of pregnancy, since they consider it to be murderous and highly immoral. It is clear that there are many reasons why women should not abort, not only the moral reasons and the health reasons, but also the psychological reasons, due to psychological stress mentioned earlier. There are, however, some who believe that abortion is necessary in some conditions.

The major argument that pro abortionists use is the use of contraception. With the use of contraception, abortion can be avoided by avoiding pregnancy in the first place. Even though condoms have a twelve percent failure ratio, there are many other forms of contraception. Women can take anti-pregnancy pills on a regular basis if they have an active sex life and do not wish to have a child. And if that fails, and there is pregnancy, the rules for a legal abortion are still put. For example, in England and Scotland, abortion is legal when the woman has been pregnant for 24 weeks or less, and if the baby has negative effects on the health of the mother, or if the baby will be born with serious mental or physical disability. (brook.org.uk) In the United States, “abortion is legal in all 50 states". (allaboutpopularissues.org) Abortion is allowed in the United States in the first six months of pregnancy.

In my opinion, I believe that abortion is not a solution to pregnancy. There are many reasons why I choose to say no to abortion, such as the beliefs of my religion, and the ethics that I follow. There are many alternatives instead of abortion. For example, the easiest and most harmless way is contraception, not only by the male, but also by the female. If, and it is highly unlikely, that both systems of contraception should fail, the second choice should be to give the baby up for adoption. Adoption is the best solution to an unwanted baby, since neither the mother nor the child is harmed, and the child can be taken in by a family to provide and protect him. It also respects the basic right of every human being, the right to live. I do not believe that it is up to the mother to decide everything on her own, since sometimes her own priorities conflict with the baby’s; the baby’s priority is simple, he only wishes to survive. And therefore, abortion is a bad decision in any case. In order to find a solution for the laws, adoption laws should be more facilitated and more comforting, so that the woman does not feel like abortion is the only option. Sometimes it is not the woman’s fault she gets pregnant, like in cases of rape or incest, and thus she should not be frowned upon by society, and should be given the chance to continue her life normally for nine months until she delivers and gives the baby up for adoption. Finally, abortion should be illegal in all circumstances, but not before proper adoption laws are put forward and proper social laws are enforced to help the woman get through this phase. It is the right of every human being to live, even if he or she is still a zygote.

Sources

N.A “a procedure that ends a pregnancy by removing the fetus and placenta from the mother’s womb (uterus)" February/19/2009

<http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/002912.htm>

N.A “damage to the womb or cervix, emotional or psychological distress, excessive bleeding, infection of the uterus or fallopian tubes" Feb/19/2009

<http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/002912.htm>

N.A “Some women […] may have a more difficult time with […] the emotional and physical recovery of the process. […] After an abortion it’s possible that a woman will have some normal feelings of grief, guilt, sadness, crying and loss." July/31/2008

<http://www.afterabortion.com/>

N.A “Unsafe abortion kills 70,000 mothers a year". Oct/15/2009

< http://www.beirut-online.net/portal/article.php?id=5906>

N.A “to save the life of the woman, to preserve physical health, to preserve mental health, rape or incest, fetal impairment, economic or social reasons, available on request." June/14/2009

<http://www.issues.co.nz/abortion/Abortion%20in%20the%20Middle%20East>

N.A “The Lebanese Penal Code of 1943 defined abortion as illegal under all circumstances. However, a presidential decree passed in 1969 permits curative abortion in cases where it is the only way to save a pregnant woman’s life, in which case the procedure can be performed even over the objections of the woman’s husband or relatives (the woman, however, must give consent, unless she is unconscious)." January 21, 2008

<http://www.nowlebanon.com/NewsArchiveDetails.aspx?ID=27425>

N.A “On Nov. 16, 2009 the legislature of the Mexican coastal state of Veracruz passed a law declaring that life begins at conception and ends at natural death." Friday, November 27 2009

< www.choike.org/2009/eng/informes/6416.html>

N.A “gravely contrary to the moral law" August/3/2009

< http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/religions/christianity/christianethics/abortion_1.shtml>

N.A “Abortion is prohibited in Islam starting from the stage in which the ovum is fertilized and becomes stuck to the wall of the womb, since at this stage the life of the fetus starts. Thus, abortion is prohibited because life should be respected from its very beginning. We mean by life here, the life in its normal circumstances that are found in the mother’s body." 24/November/2009

<http://english.bayynat.org.lb/Issues/Abortion.htm>

N.A “Abortion is legal in all 50 states".

<http://www.allaboutpopularissues.org/Pro-Abortion.htm>