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PHI 125

After reading many positions on abortion, I have come to the conclusion that a fetus is a person and the right to life of a fetus outweighs that of a woman’s right to bodily integrity. Hence, that abortion is immoral. Supporters arguments are that a fetus has no right to life at all based on the belief that is does not meet a set of criteria for personhood. Therefore, a woman may choose to abort at anytime during her pregnancy. Some may say that a woman’s right to bodily integrity outweighs a fetus’ right to life. I wish to expose the fallibility of these arguments.
Warren argues that a fetus has no substantial right to life on the basis that it is not a person. She bases this belief off of a set of criteria that suggests that these components are most crucial to the acceptance of personhood. Warren’s criteria are “consciousness, reasoning, self-motivated activity, the capacity to communicate, and the presence of self-concepts and self-awareness” (Warren p16). This set of criteria works of the belief that any being that does not meet one of the five criteria is not a person. Warren believes that to have none of the five criteria eliminates that being from classification of a person. I believe this argument may not be plausible on the grounds that a fetus can satisfy one of these criteria.
A fetus is conscious while in the womb. The fetus also has the ability to communicate. If an expectant mother does something that the fetus does not like it has the ability to communicate this by moving or kicking. It is responsive to pain, sound, and touch. The fetus has the ability to have consciousness to feel the pain and communicate that feeling through its movement. The fetus’ brain is active and able to feel pain and communicate. Although brain activity is not one of the criteria, it is the means by which the criteria come about. Now, Warren believes that this brain activity is comparable to the brain ...

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