A heated subject, for sure. And some woman say, why should a man have an opinion, it does not apply to you. Well, in philosophy, anyone can have an opinion about anything. If you have a mind you can think.
A life is valuable. It is precious. And amazing. The fact that life is possible is incredible. And what we do to protect and make every life matter, is terrific. People go to the end of the earth to help and support another person. A single person can do and create incredible things with in-quantifiable value.
Yet, the creation of life seems easy. While the process is unbelievable and amazing, how a after a man and woman have sex, in 9 months a baby is born, it is automatic. Yes being pregnant is difficult, it is a very successful process. Most pregnant woman have their babies without issue.
These two points seem to weigh against each other. Every life is valuable. The creation of life is invaluable. At what point does the value arrive?
Let’s rewind. Does a future baby have value? Perhaps. If a man and a woman have been getting ready to have a baby and doing gene therapy and exercising and getting healthy, they have put effort into preparing for their future baby. If the woman died, the man would feel loss of the partner and the baby he will never have. If the woman did not die, her future baby already has value stored up in the work of the future parents.
However, a man and a woman can have protected sex and create a life by accident. A woman can be raped against her will and become pregnant. These creations of life had no value pre-conception as their was no intent to create the baby.
So in some situations, the value begins at conception or later. Well, how early does it begin? 16 weeks? 21 weeks?
This is the most intriguing question. In every case, it is different. In a rape case, who values the baby? The mom? Her family? He church? Society? Specifically, how does society value the baby. Do they invest any money in it? Do they do anything in support of the baby? What responsibility does a impregnated woman have to her community?
Communities argue they care about the baby so it is not nothing. But that is not true. There are too many babies in the world that are not cared about for any community to argue they care about all babies. That argument is a complete lie. If a community proves a vested interest in a woman’s baby, she has a strong reason not to abort.
However, he individual can have another child later in life. If she chooses to, the new life she decides to have, ethically, balances out for the life she did not bring into being. Which baby does the community care about more? If she has a baby now, does that kill the future baby? People argue that a life form now has more value than a life form not yet created, but that argument ignores the value a woman may give to her future child. And that may be a lot of value.
A life is only as valuable as the value people give it. Society may be able to judge value in the future. But given life now, a woman has the ability to best judge the value of her baby. And the value of not creating ten babies.