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Abortion as a Result of Rape - Factual

Uploaded by xsparklyvix on Sep 05, 2005

Abortion as a result of Rape

Only 1% of abortions take place as a result of rape.
This is still 460 000 abortions each year.

The decision of whether to allow an abortion to take place on the grounds of ‘rape’ has been one that has been debated over for many years. A rape of a young girl in 1938 by British soldiers led to one of the first well known abortions by a doctor (Mr Aleck Bourne) on the grounds of mental health. At the trial he was acquitted and established the grounds for rape to be one of the fundamental grounds on the 1967 abortion act.

The grounds of rape which the abortion act takes into consideration:

1. The act takes into consideration whether the unwanted pregnancy will continue the TRAUMA for the MOTHER but also for the existing FAMILY.

2. It may be argued that any CHILD born of rape may suffer extreme TRAUMA of learning their origins.

The aim of this act was to exonerate the doctor from prosecution if two doctors could give their assent on at least one of the six grounds for abortion outlined in the act.

Judith Javis Thomson’s (great name) argument (1971) justified ‘a woman who is pregnant through rape having an abortion primarily on the grounds of ownership rights over her body. This view was subject of much controversy and strongly followed the common feminist view at that time

Thomson outlined the following justifications for having an abortion:

 Self-defence – the strain on her body justifies the killing of the child e.g if the woman is old or has already had many children.
 Ownership - the body belongs to the woman so she can remove the child whenever she wants to. This follows the view that the child is part of the woman because she is inside her and that a woman wouldn’t have a problem removing a toenail if it was causing her emotional pain thus, she can remove the child if it is also causing her distress.
 Order of Rights – The possible rights of the foetus are acknowledged but these are seen to be of less importance than the Mother during pregnancy. This view is of much controversy by Christians and Roman Catholics- we are all important in God’s eyes so how can one person be more important than another regardless of age.
 Consent – The child has no rights...

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Uploaded by:   xsparklyvix

Date:   09/05/2005

Category:   Abortion

Length:   3 pages (715 words)

Views:   14718

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