Most reasonable people hold the view that intentionally ending the life of a human being is immoral.
That’s why abortion is such a heated issue. If an unborn baby is a human (in any sense), then aborting that baby would obviously be immoral. But if the baby really only becomes a baby – a little human person – once born, then abortion is perhaps another medical procedure to remove an unwanted growth within the mother.
But attempts to define the starting point of personhood are fraught with ambiguities and subjective (often self-serving) doublespeak: that the foetus only becomes ‘human’ at an arbitrary stage of development, or only immediately prior to, or at the point of birth (or perhaps a little afterwards?)
The biblical perspective is that post-birth personhood is necessarily grounded in pre-birth personhood, and that since no observable marker delineates the crossover point between non-personhood and personhood, it’s fair to say that human personhood throughout the entire process is a reasonable assumption.
The dividing cells which become an embryo are real human cells comprising of a genetic makeup distinctive from the mother and father – though made of the genetic information of both of them. To end the process of natural biological development within the womb is to interrupt a process which, under normal circumstances, results in a person like you. In other words – to intentionally abort a developing baby in the womb (at ANY stage) is to deprive a human person of enjoying the experiences and rights that those who abort babies seek.
That’s the tragically ironic thing about the ‘pro-choice’ position: those who support the ‘right’ to abortion have already been born, and their ‘right’ deprives other persons of their rights.
I realise this is a thorny issue, and I don’t wish to offend anyone by saying this. And I realise that many women have had abortions because they genuinely felt they had no options (and perhaps there was considerable pressure placed on them by others).
But perhaps the video below exposes some of the pro-choice rhetoric for what it is.
This video takes a cheeky dig at the idea that somehow personhood is achieved by simply emerging successfully from the birth canal. It’s worth a look.