Defending a Right for Getting an Abortion Essay

Judith Jarvis Thomson is the author of a philosophical article “A Defense of Abortion.” In her article, she discusses the moral, physical, ethical, and personal rights of women who got pregnant and due to some circumstances, they do not want a child to be born. Thomson provides various examples and facts to prove the absurd of forcing a woman to keep the baby. She states that the consideration of a fetus being a person from the moment of conception is the same as stating that each seed is a plant. Thus, each woman has a responsibility and a right to decide for herself whether or not she gives birth to the fetus conceived in her body as it is not a norm to sacrifice oneself for the sake of someone whom one does not want to be present in one’s life.

Thomson claims that each woman is responsible for her body and only she has a right to decide whether or not to carry a baby in it. Opponents of abortion would not agree on that and state that a woman does not have a right to take out the existing life in her. She must give birth to a child even if he/she is predisposed to unavoidable death after getting born. Specialists prefer observing the slow death of a fetus in the body, which often hurts the physical and mental health of the woman as she must carry a dying organism inside her for a lasting period. Thomson has compared this process with the case of a violinist whose blood group is the same as yours. That is why you are kidnapped and linked to the body of a dying violinist, so his blood is cleaned up via your kidneys during a long period of time. From one point of view, you cannot let the person die, on the other hand, it harms and violates your right for healthy living as it was not your decision to save his life. Thus, Thomson concludes that “the right of life consists not in the right not to be killed, but rather in the right not to be killed unjustly” (Thomson p. 57).

The worst thing about the current law of abortion is the fact of a selective right to life. People all over the democratic world are fighting for equal rights and possibilities for everyone. However, in the case of being allowed of getting an abortion, a woman who got pregnant because of being raped has this legal right. In such a way, a fetus conceived because of rape has fewer rights for life than any other fetus. On this matter, Thomson compares the case of an open window and a burglar. She states that from the point of view of abortion opposition any time a woman opens the window to air the room, a burglar gets a right to get in the open window and root in that room. At the same time, a woman does not have a right to make that person go away. Opposition states “You don’t want children, so you fix up your window with fine mesh screens, the very best you can buy” (Thomson p. 59). However, it is a commonly known fact, that sometimes even best screens can be defective. Thus, in a case of protection that did not work a woman should not be limited of a right to get an abortion as it is an absurd situation if we think of an undesired baby as a burglar getting through an open window. All in all, forcing a woman to give birth to a child she does not want is an unethical absurd.

Works Cited:

Thomson, Judith Jarvis. A Defence of Abortion. Philosophy & Public Affairs, Vol. 1, No. 1 (Autumn, 1971), pp. 47-66

The terms offer and acceptance. (2016, May 17). Retrieved from

[Accessed: May 6, 2021]

"The terms offer and acceptance." freeessays.club, 17 May 2016.

[Accessed: May 6, 2021]

freeessays.club (2016) The terms offer and acceptance [Online].
Available at:

[Accessed: May 6, 2021]

"The terms offer and acceptance." freeessays.club, 17 May 2016

[Accessed: May 6, 2021]

"The terms offer and acceptance." freeessays.club, 17 May 2016

[Accessed: May 6, 2021]

"The terms offer and acceptance." freeessays.club, 17 May 2016

[Accessed: May 6, 2021]

"The terms offer and acceptance." freeessays.club, 17 May 2016

[Accessed: May 6, 2021]
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