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David Boonin-Vail. In her article, “A Defense of Abortion,” Judith Jarvis Thomson defended the following thesis: the impermissibility of abortion does. David Boonin has written the most thorough and detailed case for the moral permissibility of abortion yet published. Critically examining a wide range of. Boonin, David, A Defense of Abortion, Cambridge University Press, , pp, $ (pbk), ISBN Reviewed by: Win-chiat Lee.

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Cost, quality and value of life. Therefore, refense the fetus has the right to life at conception, then it must be due to the fact that it will come to possess later on the relevant properties you and I already possess.


The question is whether it would be necessarily more burdensome to outlaw abortion degense than infanticide merely because adoption is a less costly alternative to infanticide than abortion. This usually means that the brain must be sufficiently developed in order to produce rudimentary manifestation of a rational soul with intellect and will. Here is how it goes:.

Explore the Home Gift Guide. Thus, to say that abortion is morally permissible is to say that no one’s moral right is violated by abortion.

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A Defense of Abortion

This line of argument is sometimes called the good Samaritan argument hereafter, GS argument for the permissibility of abortion, as it claims that requiring the woman to refrain from abortion would be like requiring her to act as a good Samaritan, which is an unjustifiable demand.

The overall conclusion of the present arguments is that it is difficult to morally justify the abortion of fetuses with Down syndrome without also permitting the killing of infants with Down syndrome. If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support? Abortion and a Serious Right to Life. Why the criterion of birth and the argument from bodily integrity cannot justify the abortion of fetuses with Down syndrome So far, I have argued against reconciling the beliefs that aborting fetuses with Down syndrome is permissible while infanticide is not by demonstrating that the criteria invoked to justify the abortion of fetuses with Down syndrome—those based on consciousness or viability—are, in fact, consistent with the permissibility of infanticide.


For example, one can, of course, decide not to invoke the right to life of fetus as a reason why the aim to eliminate it would be impermissible, since that would restrict abortion rights. Therefore, this objection to my argument against invoking precautionary concerns in order to differentiate between abortion before week 20 and the infanticide of extremely preterm fetuses without a functioning cortical cortex also fails. According to the criterion in this version, it is permissible to abort a pre-viable fetus because it is only after viability that the fetus is considered a person entitled to a moral right to life.

This is the best defense of abortion I have encountered. Successful experience of people with Down syndrome.

Consequently, if, for example, egg donations are permitted by anonymous donors, there may be cases where only the mother is left to decide whether or not the infant should be killed, which, in turn, eliminates this difference between the cases and makes infanticide permissible according to ddavid criterion.


Why would it be morally permissible in that situation to abort the fetus, but not to kill the infant? Whatever other properties you and I actually share with the fetus either cannot explain why you and I have the right to life or cannot rule out sperms and eggs as also having the right to life.

Instead, one might try to settle on the most plausible way of justifying abortion, and if that justification leads to the conclusion that infanticide is also permissible under certain circumstances, then seek other external parameters to differentiate infanticide from abortion. Equally, there are plausible arguments in favor of the view that fetuses with Down syndrome also have a right to life, which means that permitting their abortion might be gravely wrong.

American Journal of Bioethics. Admittedly, the cost of not permitting women to abort fetuses diagnosed with Down syndrome would generally be higher—even if it cannot be ruled out, as I demonstrated above, that it would be less costly than infanticide in some circumstances.

I conclude the article by making some preliminary remarks about how one might manage the situation posed by my argument. I have therefore focused on this kind of abortion even though my conclusions have a wider scope of relevance. Find it on Scholar. Therefore, from the fact that the violinist does not have his right violated if he gets disconnected, it does not follow that the fetus does not have its right violated if it gets aborted.


Beckwith – – Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 31 2: The author also takes apart the violinist analogy and explains why it is poor. A famous unconscious violinist. Firstly, it depends on whether the baby can be given up for adoption—if no one is ready to adopt the child and no other way exists to avoid parenthood once the child is aborttionthen, of course, there would be no difference between abortion and infanticide in this regard.

Boonin seems to me to have come quite close to doing just that in his rejection of the pro-life feminist argument later in the book. Such a scenario speaks in favor of the second option.

A Defense of Abortion // Reviews // Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews // University of Notre Dame

A background in informal logic and philosophy will certainly be helpful to the derense here. Trends in timing of prenatal diagnosis and abortion for fetal chromosomal abnormalities.

Law, religion, and the metaphysics of abortion. Nov 28, An rated it it was amazing Shelves: Boonin’s reply is that one needs to distinguish between being responsible for another person’s existence and being responsible for her state, given that she already exists However, for the sake of argument, I set aside this objection and assume that one can justify the position that the defehse possibility of some kind of consciousness constitutes a right to life as early as in week Concluding remarks The overall conclusion of the present arguments is that it is ahortion to morally justify the abortion of fetuses with Down syndrome without also permitting the killing of infants with Down syndrome.

A Defense of Abortion – David Boonin – Google Books

Please try again later. Would dedense not be impermissible? Moreover, while the pregnant woman actually enjoined being pregnant, the parents who realize that their infant has Down syndrome experience the situation as being very burdensome.