Roe vs. Wade, revisited MVHS students debate the ethics of abortion

By: Collin Qian

When abortion became legalized nationwide in 1973 with the Roe vs. Wade case, people across the nation debated the ethics of being pro-life or pro-choice.

For sophomore Sachi Roy, the legalization of abortion has affected her life and shaped her opinions on abortion as well. When Roy was in seventh grade, her aunt got an abortion, and curiosity brought Roy to do some research on the topic. Influenced by the proximity of abortion in her own life, Roy decided to side with pro-choice.

“I feel like every woman has the right to do what they want with their body,” said Roy. “I support the idea that every woman like no matter what their ideals are that they should have the choice [of getting an abortion] because it’s not fair to like kind of force your own opinion or ideas other people and they believe something else.”

Students have learned about this debate through their mandatory freshman biology class. A male junior at MVHS is pro-life, and to protect his identity, he will be referred as Jeremiah. After doing research about abortion beyond his biology class, he instead decided to side with pro-life.

“I looked over statistics, I looked over alibis, and I thought I'd play devil's advocate for both sides,” Jeremiah said. “I couldn't find any way to justify pro-choice from a moral standpoint, or from a biological standpoint.”

A prevalent argument within the debate of abortion is about whether the fetus inside the mother can be considered its own person or not, depending on what trimester of pregnancy the fetus is in. While some pro-choice supporters believe that the fetus shouldn’t be considered its own person, people who support pro-life believe otherwise. Jeremiah believes that the fetus should have its own rights and if it has the possibility to become a fully developed baby, it should be considered its own person.

“The moment that the sperm fertilizes egg and it starts to rapidly [reproduce], I don't think it should be touched,” Jeremiah said. “I think it should be able to go through its natural processes and become a human.”

With a different opinion on this argument, Sophomore Becky So is pro-choice and she believes that only nearing the date of birth, abortion should not be an option. However, early on during pregnancy, women should have the choice of an abortion.

“If the baby can barely survive on its own, I don't think [abortion the fetus should] be considered murder,” So said.

Roy shares a similar opinion to So and believes that abortion should be considered far from murder. She believes that the fetus should not be considered similar to a human or person.

“In my belief, [the fetus is] not fully formed yet so it can't be considered a baby,” Roy said. “I think if its about to come out, then it is fully formed and then that shouldn't be an option for you to get an abortion. Then you should've done it earlier when it was safer for you as well.”

While students disagree on the ethics and science of abortion, their views of women who choose abortions also differ. Roy views women who perceive abortions in a brighter light, understanding the mental stress that abortion causes for women.

“There is a lot of emotional stress in giving birth to something and having to wait for that,” Roy said.

Though So does not have any physical or family ties to any women who have chosen to get an abortion, she thinks similarly to Roy, crediting women for the strength it requires to get an abortion.

“I have not known any women [who have received an abortion], but I don't think would view them any differently,” So said. “In fact, I think women who choose to abort their child can sometimes be viewed as stronger because it takes a lot of courage to have an abortion especially because of all the judgement you may take.”

As he is pro-choice, Jeremiah thinks differently than Roy and So’. He believes that women who choose to get abortions are using it as a safe card for their irresponsibility, and because of that, individuals shouldn’t have the option of abortion.

“I view them as extremely careless irresponsible people who shouldn't be having sex in the first place,” Jeremiah said. “I think the abortion is kind of their ‘get out of jail card’ sort of [like], ‘I'll get an abortion, I don't want the baby [so] that’s not my issue anymore.’ I think that's extremely irresponsible considering the [price of] abortion is way more expensive than a pack of condoms, or a few birth control pills.”

In summary, Jeremiah believes that the killing of a baby should never be justified in any circumstance.

“If [the baby is] a nuisance to you, that doesn't justify it,” Jeremiah said. “Because if you think about it, many people alive who are in their 20s that get called deadbeat sons, deadbeat daughters, they're a nuisance to their parents but their parents can't just decide to terminate their life so I don't think you should be able to terminate such an innocent soul. You know, a baby is the closest thing the most pure, most innocent thing you can have in this world, and I don't think it should be terminated.”

Unlike Jeremiah who doesn’t see the justification of an abortion, Roy and So consider the potential consequences. They believe forcing women into doing something they do not want to, like keeping the baby, will result with consequences that might not be so easy to fix, such as an abundance of mistreated foster children.

“Complications can arise from going with hope that you can give up the baby for adoption and also for the mom and father, its very stressful.” said Roy. “I think it's being kind of like misled because right now there are so many kids in the foster system that aren't being taken care of.”

So also believes that there are many problems that could arise if pregnant mothers are not given the option for an abortion, and that these pregnant women would need some form of help if an abortion is not an option.

“For like people who pick pro-life, one thing I haven't heard is like if your pro-life, what are you planning to do with all the mothers who need help?” So said, “You better say something about how you’re gonna support those mothers before and after the birth.”
Created By
Collin Qian

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