Judith Jarvis Thomson's Comparison: Abortion And Personhood Belomson

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There is often a large dispute over abortion and when personhood begins. Some believe it is at fertilization, some think that it is a vague concept, and some believe that it is when the child is born. The common argument against abortion is the claim that the fetus is a person and therefore has a right to life. A philosopher, Judith Jarvis Thomson, believes that even if personhood begins at the stage of being a fetus, there are still times when it is moral to abort the fetus. She believes that personhood begins at a vague time, however she wants to prove even if the fetus is a person, she can provide times when it is still morally permissible to have an abortion. Therefore, she grants the opposing side that the fetus is a person. Thomson claims …show more content…
She suggests that a parent becomes morally obligated to the fetus when they decide to not have an abortion and do not try to prevent a pregnancy and therefore allow the baby to be born without efforts of adoption. When they take the baby home, they assume responsibility for the child and cannot withdraw support from the child. She believes that just because of biological relationships, there is no special obligation to it. They can choose to assume responsibility or they can choose to not take responsibility. Until they accept responsibility, it is morally permissible to have an abortion. She agrees that a mother is responsible for the child once she allows it to be born and come into her home, but until then, there is no …show more content…
I don’t think that her argument is successful, because that is saying that a pregnant mother has no obligation in keeping her baby healthy until it is born. Most people would agree that mothers should take precautions to keep her baby healthy while in the womb. We look down upon women who drink alcohol, smoke, and do drugs while pregnant because of the detrimental effects, however according to Thomson, the mother should not have an obligation to keep that baby alive and healthy until after the child is born. We look down upon these actions because it can have detrimental effects on the growth and development of the unborn child or can make the child addicted to drugs when born. Under Thomson’s argument, a mother should be allowed to do any actions she wants while pregnant because she doesn’t have a responsibility to the unborn child until she takes the child home and refuses to put it up for adoption. Being pregnant implies that some lifestyle changes need to occur because we have a new responsibility to the fetus even if the baby isn’t born yet. If a woman becomes pregnant, she should not wait until she decides that she doesn’t want to have an abortion and doesn’t want to put it up for adoption to begin to take care of the child. Those precautions need to begin immediately or there will be large effects on the fetus. Even if the woman decides to put the baby up for adoption, she is responsible in making sure the baby

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