If fetuses are persons, abortion is a public health crisis

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If fetuses are persons, abortion is a public health crisis. / Blackshaw, Bruce; Rodger, Daniel.

In: Bioethics, Vol. 35, No. 5, 06.2021, p. 465-472.

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Blackshaw, Bruce ; Rodger, Daniel. / If fetuses are persons, abortion is a public health crisis. In: Bioethics. 2021 ; Vol. 35, No. 5. pp. 465-472.

Bibtex

@article{c0ee43af91254e8f9ba87af1ef3a7183,
title = "If fetuses are persons, abortion is a public health crisis",
abstract = "Pro-life advocates commonly argue that fetuses have the moral status of persons, and an accompanying right to life, a view most pro-choice advocates deny. A difficulty for this pro-life position has been Judith Jarvis Thomson's violinist analogy, in which she argues that even if the fetus is a person, abortion is often permissible because a pregnant woman is not obliged to continue to offer her body as life support. Here, we outline the moral theories underlying public health ethics, and examine the COVID-19 pandemic as an example of public health considerations overriding individual rights. We argue that if fetuses are regarded as persons, then abortion is of such prevalence in society that it also constitutes a significant public health crisis. We show that on public health considerations, we are justified in overriding individual rights to bodily autonomy by prohibiting abortion. We conclude that in a society that values public health, abortion can only be tolerated if fetuses are not regarded as persons.",
keywords = "Abortion, Induced/ethics, COVID-19, Civil Rights, Dissent and Disputes, Ethical Analysis, Ethical Theory, Female, Fetus, Human Rights, Humans, Moral Obligations, Moral Status, Pandemics/ethics, Personhood, Pregnancy, Pregnant Women, Public Health/ethics, Reproductive Rights, Value of Life",
author = "Bruce Blackshaw and Daniel Rodger",
note = "{\textcopyright} 2021 The Authors. Bioethics published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.",
year = "2021",
month = jun,
doi = "10.1111/bioe.12874",
language = "English",
volume = "35",
pages = "465--472",
journal = "Bioethics",
issn = "0269-9702",
publisher = "Wiley",
number = "5",

}

RIS

TY - JOUR

T1 - If fetuses are persons, abortion is a public health crisis

AU - Blackshaw, Bruce

AU - Rodger, Daniel

N1 - © 2021 The Authors. Bioethics published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

PY - 2021/6

Y1 - 2021/6

N2 - Pro-life advocates commonly argue that fetuses have the moral status of persons, and an accompanying right to life, a view most pro-choice advocates deny. A difficulty for this pro-life position has been Judith Jarvis Thomson's violinist analogy, in which she argues that even if the fetus is a person, abortion is often permissible because a pregnant woman is not obliged to continue to offer her body as life support. Here, we outline the moral theories underlying public health ethics, and examine the COVID-19 pandemic as an example of public health considerations overriding individual rights. We argue that if fetuses are regarded as persons, then abortion is of such prevalence in society that it also constitutes a significant public health crisis. We show that on public health considerations, we are justified in overriding individual rights to bodily autonomy by prohibiting abortion. We conclude that in a society that values public health, abortion can only be tolerated if fetuses are not regarded as persons.

AB - Pro-life advocates commonly argue that fetuses have the moral status of persons, and an accompanying right to life, a view most pro-choice advocates deny. A difficulty for this pro-life position has been Judith Jarvis Thomson's violinist analogy, in which she argues that even if the fetus is a person, abortion is often permissible because a pregnant woman is not obliged to continue to offer her body as life support. Here, we outline the moral theories underlying public health ethics, and examine the COVID-19 pandemic as an example of public health considerations overriding individual rights. We argue that if fetuses are regarded as persons, then abortion is of such prevalence in society that it also constitutes a significant public health crisis. We show that on public health considerations, we are justified in overriding individual rights to bodily autonomy by prohibiting abortion. We conclude that in a society that values public health, abortion can only be tolerated if fetuses are not regarded as persons.

KW - Abortion, Induced/ethics

KW - COVID-19

KW - Civil Rights

KW - Dissent and Disputes

KW - Ethical Analysis

KW - Ethical Theory

KW - Female

KW - Fetus

KW - Human Rights

KW - Humans

KW - Moral Obligations

KW - Moral Status

KW - Pandemics/ethics

KW - Personhood

KW - Pregnancy

KW - Pregnant Women

KW - Public Health/ethics

KW - Reproductive Rights

KW - Value of Life

U2 - 10.1111/bioe.12874

DO - 10.1111/bioe.12874

M3 - Article

C2 - 33811355

VL - 35

SP - 465

EP - 472

JO - Bioethics

JF - Bioethics

SN - 0269-9702

IS - 5

ER -