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A Right to Choose

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"A Right to Choose"

Abortion has been a controversial topic for years. Even after the Supreme Court legalized abortion in the United States in 1973, the heated controversy continues. The people opposed to abortion refer to themselves as pro life, and those in favor of abortion use the term pro choice. Although many people in the United States believe abortion is immoral and borders on homicide, there are many crucial reasons why abortion should remain legal. Rape and incest victims should not be forced to continue unwanted pregnancies, illegal abortion would not stop women from having the procedure done, and fetuses are not separate individuals. The most important issue is women's personal freedoms. Denying women the right to their bodies is a violation of basic freedom.

Rape or incest is a very traumatic experience for women, and alone is very hard to deal with. Forcing the victim to bear the added responsibility of having, and caring for the child created from the violent act, would further the physiological damage. The children produced have a greater chance of being neglected or abandoned because they are a constant reminder of the incident. Pro life advocates would argue that in the case of rape or incest, immediate medical care will insure that the woman does not become pregnant. The "immediate medical care" is the morning after pill, which is condemned by pro life advocates as a form of abortion. Often victims of rape or incest are too afraid to speak up, and by the time they realize they're pregnant the morning after pill is ineffective.

If abortion were made illegal, it would not stop women from having the procedure done. Women have been getting abortions long before it was made legal. The number of women who get an abortion would not change if it was outlawed. The only thing to change would be that more women would seek out back alley abortion clinics, or possibly try to do the procedure themselves. If left with these options women would have a huge risk to their lives, and health. The supporters of illegal abortion believe there is the same risk to women when they go to licensed clinics. Abortion is a safe medical procedure. Medical abortions have less than .5% risk of serious complications, and do not affect a woman's health or ability to become pregnant in the future.

One of the most important questions regarding abortion is when life begins. Pro life advocates believe that life begins at conception and abortion is a form of homicide. A fetus may be alive but so are sperms and eggs. It is true that life in every form should be respected; however, should the right of a fetus be greater than that of a woman? A woman is more than a fetus and should not be forced to become a host body. Most of the abortions in the United States take place in the first trimester when the fetus cannot live independent of the mother.



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