Abortion, the rights of the unborn baby and relative morality
Abortion, the rights of the unborn baby and relative morality
Allowing abortion in cases of « préjudices à la santé mentale de la femme » may be open to abuse and provide a loophole for the outright legalisation of abortion. In reality, abortion itself is considered, even proven, to mentally scar the woman for life.
Abortion 7 weeks from conception
In making moral decisions, people tend to draw from a variety of sources, such as the Holy Scriptures, religious leaders, conscience and reason, the latter two also being part and parcel of the former two. Morality can be absolute or relative. Under absolute morality, blood transfusion may not be allowed because of religious beliefs even though it is intended to save lives. Similarly, under certain religious beliefs, abortion may be disallowed because it is regarded as the taking of lives. However, although relative morality allows blood transfusion without much ado, the matter is more complex in cases of abortion especially given that « Abortion photographs help establish the reality that abortion is a brutal act of violence » [Ref. The Center for Bio-ethical Reform].
Christians always followed their Jewish counterparts and regarded the baby in the womb as being « fashioned by God », and considered abortion as a sin, even murder. The Bible considers conception as the beginning of the process that leads to birth [Judges 13:7]. Recently, some Christians began to entertain the concept of « pro-choice » in allowing abortion. Differentiating the unformed embryo from the formed foetus in making a case for abortion is also commonplace. Within Christianity, different churches tend to hold differing views. Roman Catholicism opposes abortion while the mainstream Protestant tradition tends to be « pro-choice » like the Episcopal Church in the United States, while some other Churches simply do not take a stand on abortion.
In Islam, the sanctity of life is not in doubt [Qur’an 5:32]. Muslims generally regard abortion as haram (forbidden) but many accept that it may be permitted in certain cases. Abortion due to lack of financial means is forbidden and a sin [Qur’an 17:31]. But all schools of Muslim Law allow abortion to save the life of the mother, even after 120 days of pregnancy. Abortion invoking the fact that the baby was not planned or that it will interfere with the mother’s education and career is not allowed. Termination of pregnancies relating to rape, incest and so on, tends to be looked at on a case by case basis. Many Muslim scholars do not regard abortion as a « punishable wrong », but a wrong nevertheless.
In Hinduism, morality stems from the principle of ahimsa (non-violence) and, in the case of abortion, the chosen path is one of least harm to the mother, the father, the foetus and society. Hinduism regards all forms of life as sacred and is generally opposed to abortion unless it is necessary to save the mother’s life. Hindus regard procreation as a public duty rather than one of personal choice (ref. Lipner, « The classical Hindu view on abortion and the moral status of the unborn »,1989). The doctrine of reincarnation is also against abortion because the soul in the aborted foetus would suffer a karmic setback.
European secularism tends to take the libertarian view of the woman whereby women are made to believe that they have the sacrosanct right to do whatever they wish with their own bodies. Although in pregnancy, part of the man can be said to be inside the woman, his opinion on abortion is considered irrelevant. European laws concur that the choice is the woman only, especially given the sexual permissiveness that exists across the European West. In many cases, the mother cannot even identify the father. Western values reject Eastern morality as “religious” and archaic. Religious morality has to do with « righteous behaviour » while secularists are at pains to show their ‘righteousness’ unless it is borrowed from religion but distorted for political purposes. European laws have always been based upon Canon Laws. But in western permissive society, the legalisation of abortion is, in many cases, a vote winner and represents billions of dollars in terms of business for the surgeons and trading corporations associated with the abortion trade. The same applies to the sex trade in its various forms. The barons of those trades are not difficult to identify. Those secular values are intrinsically associated with the capitalist system which the West is imposing on non-Western countries through military and economic dominance.
The United Nations are said to be complicit as the UN-sponsored abortion programme has caused the death of millions of unborn babies during the latter half of last century, for example, in India mainly because they were identified as girls, not to mention the millions in Africa. The « sex-selective abortion » in India is also referred to as « The Endangered Sex » or as « Unborn Girls », which is reminiscent of the newborn baby girls buried alive in Arabia before the practice was declared unlawful with the arrival of Islam.
Case of Mauritius
In Mauritius, abortion is illegal. But as Mauritius has effectively been turned into a Pleasure Island through tourism, and given that many Mauritians have adopted the alleged modern western way of life, some women want unfettered legalisation in favour of abortion so that they can satisfy their lust and promiscuity and those of the men in the knowledge that an unwanted pregnancy can be easily terminated. In this light, pro-abortion movements, such as Lindsey Collen’s « Muvman liberasyon fam ( MLF) » (Movement for the Liberation of Women), tend to focus solely on the woman’s alleged rights to do whatever she likes with her body and not on the destruction of the unborn baby. When they accuse anti-abortionists of being « pro-life », anti-abortionists can equally accuse them of being « pro-death ». In any case, being « pro-life » does not constitute an offence while the same cannot necessarily be said for « pro-death ». If abortion is regarded as human rights, what about the human rights of the unborn child? Should not that child be protected?
Mauritians should guard against copying what other countries are doing under the cover of modernism, liberalism or progressiveness or secularism, with all the sexually transmitted diseases and other complications that it entails, but rather look at the moral and ethical requirements of the people of Mauritius for a healthy society given its diversity and specificities. Mauritians have their own cultures, identities and values. The argument of gender equality is totally irrelevant because the man is not the one who carries the baby. If anything, it is more ‘gender inequality’!
However, given the extremely complex nature of the subject, given that women are often victims of sexual violence, given that many women are at risk during pregnancy and at childbirth, given that the foetus may be subject to malformation, and so on, under the concept of relative morality, abortion may be allowed in certain circumstances, and this has nothing to do with « Une pratique des pays modernes » as Xavier-Luc Duval of the PMSD makes out (l’Express 6 May 12). Hence, there is a case for the review of the laws on abortion with clear guidelines as to the circumstances under which abortion can be performed.
In this light, the government has proposed to introduce a law to allow abortion in specific cases. The cases in which abortion would be allowed have been listed as follows:
<< 1) lorsque la vie d’une femme est en danger si elle poursuit sa grossesse ; 2) lorsque la grossesse pourrait entraîner une incapacité permanente ou porter préjudices à la santé mentale de la femme ; 3) lorsque qu’il y a des risques substantiels de malformation du fœtus ; 4) lorsqu’une personne tombe enceinte après un cas d’inceste ou de viol. Le fœtus ne devrait, cependant, pas dépasser 14 semaines dans les cas d’inceste ou de viol. Il en est de même pour une mineure de moins de 16 ans qui a eu des relations sexuelles. Les victimes de viol et d’inceste et les adolescentes de moins de 16 ans devront au préalable rapporter le cas à la police ou à un médecin. >> [Source : Défi 4 May 12].
Those various aspects would be debated in Parliament before the bill is passed, but regard should be had to the fact that allowing abortion in cases of « préjudices à la santé mentale de la femme » may be open to abuse and provide a loophole for the outright legalisation of abortion. In reality, abortion itself is considered, even proven, to mentally scar the woman for life.
M Rafic Soormally
Updated 7 May 12
PS. Before it was updated, the above article was published in June 2009 both in the UK and Mauritius. Since it was updated on 7th May 2012, the bill to legalise abortion in extreme (specific) cases has been passed by a large majority. However, the bill still remains poorly drafted with several uncertainties and loopholes, especially in its application.
Ce qui est étrange, c’est que vous éludez certaines questions. Votre post reprend quelques éléments que j’ai moi-même apportés dans des posts précédents.
Seriez-vous à court d’arguments ?
Que représente la photographie insérée dans votre post ? Une luette infectée peut-être ?
N’étant pas versé dans la chose médicale et au vu de la légende, il s’agit probablement d’un embryon. Cet embryon greffé sur la personne qui le porte et qui vit uniquement grâce au sang de cette personne et pas d’une autre.
Je n’arrive pas à discerner si cet embryon est une fille, un garçon ou un homosexuel. Pouvez-vous m’aider Rafic SVP.
Que voulez-vous exactement ? Le bien de l’être humain dans la mouise ou l‘obéissance aveugle à des textes diffusés par des personnes dont l’objectif premier était et est encore aujourd’hui le pouvoir sur autrui et par corolaire l’aisance financière pour ne pas dire la richesse et même parfois aussi un pouvoir dictatorial.
Les religieux du monde entier sont toujours au-dessus des autres et n’ont jamais des fins de mois difficiles. Bizarre non !
Parfois, ils possèdent même un état à l’instar du Vatican
Quand je pense que Mahomet raccommodait ses habits et réparait ses souliers de ses propres mains et que Jésus était un pauvre parmi les pauvres ! Aujourd’hui, on est loin de la philosophie originelle qui a été dévoyée à dessein.
Pas étonnant que l’on constate l'érosion dans le temps des convictions et de la pratique religieuse.
Je vous dis qu'il faut regarder tous les hommes comme nos frères. Oui ! Mon frère le Turc ? Mon frère le Chinois ? Le Juif ? Le Siamois ? Oui sans doute ; ne sommes-nous pas tous enfants du même père, et créatures du même Dieu ? Voltaire.
P.-S. Concernant le Juif, j’en connais un qui ne va pas être d’accord et tant pis pour la religion.
Il est sage de ne pas se compliquer la vie inutilement, les autres s'en chargent.
Soyons économes de notre mépris, il y a tant de nécessiteux.
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