Finnis on Abortion

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Department
Philosophy
Course
PHIL 164
Professor
Heidi Buetow
Semester
Fall

Description
Finnis on Abortion - he feels that abortion is almost never permissible. Even in cases of rape or if the mother’s health is at risk then it is still morally wrong. Abortion is only permissible in very specific circumstances when both the mother and child are at severe health risks. 1. If a fetus is a person, then it is wrong to kill (abort) a fetus 2. A fetus is a person 3. Therefore, it is wrong to kill (abort) a fetus Monus Ponens, valid Rationale for premise one: if the fetus is a person then it is subject to all of the moral rights all living persons are entitled to (must define “person” first) Rationale for premise two: 1) the “vagueness” argument: there are no non-arbitrary way of judging where personhood begins, so personhood must begin when human life first begins – when the sperm meets the egg. Since the boundaries are vague between zygote and adult human being, a zygote is already a person. 2) pure potwntiality argument: Even the youngest human embryo already has the biological capacity appropriate to supporting specifically human operatio. - Most p
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