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"The Right To Have an Abortion" - my argumentative paper


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Mar 13, 2009, 03:00am   #1
Hello,
This is my first argument paper. Please help me to edit to make it sound better. In my conclusion, my teacher said I need to say something interesting to think about but I have no idea what to say to make it interesting? I also have trouble with use end text citation. I found information, I use someone idea but that person used the idea from someone book so how can i make end text citation in this case. Thank you so much for your time!

The Right To Have an Abortion

Unwanted pregnancies can be very stressful for women. Whether or not women have the right to have abortions is a controversial subject. Opponents of abortions believe that abortion is seriously wrong. Killing a fetus is killing a person. However, women should be able to have abortions for several reasons. Women should have the right to make decisions about their own bodies. Women should be able to have an abortion if they are too young and unable to take care their babies. And the right to have an abortion if the pregnency negatively affects the women's or the babies's health.

It is women's right to make decisions about their own bodies. Having control over their own bodies is an important part of the equal rights that women have fount for. According to socialistworker, Women have the right to control their own body and reproductive lives (Socialistworker.org). Therefore, no one has the right to tell a woman what she can or can not do with her body. This view is shared by the United States Supreme Court who ruled in the 1973 case "Roe Vs. Wade" that women have the right to control their own bodies. Since 1973 the Supreme Court has never over ruled this decision.

Another reason that women should be able to have abortions is in case the mothers are too young and unable to take care their babies. Unwanted pregnancies can be very stressful for women. Therefore, if they think they can not give their babies a good life then it is right for them to have abortions. For example, one of my friends was pregnant when she was 19. She and her baby's father were still in college by that time. Neither had a job, and they knew that they could not afford to buy food and provided medical care for their baby. My friend got an abortion, even though it was the hardest decision of her life. She knew that it would be better, however, for her own life and because she could not properly take care of the baby.

Critics of abortion say stopping a fetus's life is wrong. But if the babies health is at question during the pregnacy a woman should have the right to choose for herself. The reason is I believe that continuing a dangerous pregnacy will put a woman in a dangerous situation and will bring the baby into a life of sickness. In pre-pregnancy diabetes raises risk of birth defects, Donya (2008) report that " Women diagnosed with diabetes before they become pregnant are three times to four times more likely to give birth to a child with one or even multiple birth defects than a non diabetic mother, according to a study in the Aug. 1 American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology ". If a woman gets pregnant and she has a history of heart disease then continuing the pregnancy would put both her and her baby at risk. A woman with a history of heart disease should avoid pregnancy because of the the high risk of death or she will give birth to a baby with birth defects. Therefore, it is right if a woman chooses to get abortion in this case.

Advocates of abortion believe that death is harmful for the fetus and the fetus has the right to have a life just like ours. One advocate of abortion is Stone. For Stone, " death seriously harms the fetus and so the fetus has a right to life because death deprives the fetus of conscious goods which it is the foetus's biological natural to make itself have " . However when a woman's health is at risk or they will give birth to a child with defects then abortion would be better for the mother and for the baby. If we know the child will be born with defects then there is no point in having have the mother keep the baby if she chooses not to.

In conclusion, I believe that women have the right to have abortions. First, women have the right to control their own bodies. Second, they have the right to have abortions if the pregnancies will affect their health and their babies health in a harmful way. Third, women have the right to have abortions if they have been raped. Also advocates of abortion believe that abortion is seriously wrong but women should do what is best for them and their babies.


Pham 1
Works cites
Sharon Smith. " Abortion is every woman's right." Socialistworker 23 April 2004. 13 March 2009 <http://socialistworker.org/2004-1/496/496_06_Abortion.shtml >.


Stretton, Dean. "The Deprivation Argument Against Abortion." Bioethics 18.2 (Apr. 2004): 144-180. Academic Search Complete. EBSCO. [Library name], [City], [State abbreviation]. 28 Feb. 2009 <http://proxy.ohiolink.edu:9099/login?url=http://search.ebsc ohost....com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=a9h&AN=12440981&site= ehost-live>.
Currie, Donya. "Pre-pregnancy diabetes raises risk of birth defects." Nation's Health 38.8 (Oct. 2008): 21-21. Academic Search Complete. EBSCO. [Library name], [City], [State abbreviation]. 28 Feb. 2009 <http://proxy.ohiolink.edu:9099/login?url=http://search.ebsc ohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=a9h&AN=34643395&site=eho st-live>.
3:
J. Stone. Why Potentiality Matters. Canadian Journal of Philosophy 1987; 17:
815830. More recently: J. Stone. Why Potentiality Still Matters.
Canadian Journal
of Philosophy 1994; 24: 281294.
Mar 13, 2009, 05:37am   #2
You need to take this one back to the drawing board, or choose a topic that you have the necessary understanding of to make an informed argument.


"Women should be able to have an abortion if they are too young and unable to take care their babies."

So, in short, you admit that this is a matter of convenience. She is not "unable", to take care of her baby. Sure, it may make her life harder to take care of it, and she might have to endure a lot of sacrifice, but in most countries, especially developed countries which I assume the audience you are speaking to resides in, I have never heard of babies dying due to lack of sufficient means. The mother can receive government assistance to help her support the baby, and if all else fails, she can always give the baby up for adoption. This rationale in quotes, is a product of a selfish mentality, which is probably the reason for the dilemma in the first place. She may be too young to care, but someone else isn't. And in another unlikely scenario, she may find that she is unable to care for the baby, but someone else isn't. So, if it is going to disrupt your life so much that you'd rather not take care of the baby, have someone else do it for you. And you can't have it both ways; you can't decide that, oh but I don't want someone else to have my baby, especially at the expense of killing a life altogether. The notion that a mother's self-inflicted dilemma -- not that of killing the fetus or not, which is no dilemma, but the decision on whether she should derail her own fastidious plans, (which probably won't go as planned after all, if history is any judge) for her baby's sake, or give the baby up for adoption, is not an easy one, is true, however, it is entirely of her own doing. Your point is formally deconstructed when we look at the real options, in real terms.

Do we kill your aspirations or desires, or do we kill a life?


"And the right to have an abortion if the pregnency negatively affects the women's or the babies's health."

This point is far, far above the one preceding it, in terms of credibility. If there are very serious risks to the woman's health, an abortion could be justified on the grounds that you choose the lesser of two evils, that is, forsaking the unborn child to save the mother's life. The baby's health is another question altogether. It's no doubt hard to make a decision for someone on whether or not their life is worth living, but I could see how a severe deformity might lead one to the route of abortion, justifiably.


"Having control over their own bodies is an important part of the equal rights that women have fount for."


Look, by all means, having control over "their own bodies" does not extend to the life of the fetus. If we implant an embryo in a surrogate mother, then doesn't she have the right to abort the child, without regard for any preconceived agreements, because she has liberty over "her own body?

"Her own Body" is understood to mean a permanent part of her inherent physical anatomy, separate from an independent life which she has no right to have reign over.


"Another reason that women should be able to have abortions is in case the mothers are too young and unable to take care their babies. Unwanted pregnancies can be very stressful for women. Therefore, if they think they can not give their babies a good life then it is right for them to have abortions."

This is mostly a repetition of the first point, in poor arrangement, due to poor sentence progression mechanics. But you interjected some new things. First you say that "an unwanted pregnancy can be very stressful."

Guess what? Driving in heavy traffic can be very stressful, but that doesn't give you the right to kill every driver and passenger of every car on the highway, or any for that matter.

Shortly after that, I was forced to wince as I read your subjective evaluation of what is a "good life."

Consider this, it's some real Sh**: There are people living in Southeast DC, not more than 15 miles from where I live, who subsist on scraps, and sleep in degenerate buildings with basketball-sized rats, where the sound of gunshots is not at all foreign. Outside, they face the bereft reality that is rampant drug dealing, unconcealed crime and violence, and conditions that to anyone unaccustomed, would be untenable. Yet still, they value their life.



Rene-Thierry Magon de la Villehuchet, he was a french fund manager, one of thousands of victims of the now infamous Madoff Scandal. Why do I say he "was?"

He committed suicide after losing $1.4 billion of his clients' money in the Ponzi Sceme.

He could have still maintained a quality of life that some people spend their whole life dreaming of. But in the end, he valued money more than his life. What life he had was not "good" enough for him.

I make that comparison to show you the extreme difference of opinion on what makes a life worth living, that really, there is no way to determine for somone else, what is a "good life."



"Therefore, it is right if a woman chooses to get abortion in this case."

I've already mentioned how it's largely ridiculous to assume decisions for other people, especially on the most important question of their life; that is, of, their life, I should say.

But suppose even that there is a gray area that "might" justify a woman getting an abortion. The abortion would not be "right." That would mean that doing nothing is wrong. So leave it open for interpretation with a word like "might" "perhaps" "possibly" "could" etc.

What I'm saying is that if the situation might have justified it 99.9% to get an abortion, you cannot go beyond that premise to 100%, and say that it is "right", without first clearly defining the motivating factor in terms of % justification of the abortion. Not only is that impossible to do objectively, it would be hard to do subjectively based on the variability of different health concerns, or risks. Therefore, take my advice and use a moderate word such as "might", "perhaps", etc.


"One advocate of abortion is Stone. For Stone, " death seriously harms the fetus and so the fetus has a right to life"

Advocate means someone in support of. You've misused the word throughout your essay. Take that into consideration when you write your new essay.

It seems that you manage to repeat the weakest, poorly articulated points in your argument a few more times.

In your conclusion, it seems you finally decide to throw the word "rape" into the mix as an afterthought.

That would probably recur many times in the body, if not as early as the thesis, in a well written persuasive essay on either side of this topic, but even more so in support of abortion.

As someone who does not have an expert grasp on the arguments, you need to stick to the more salient points such as rape, extreme deformities, serious health risks to the woman, etc.

Stick to those extenuating circumstances and you'll have a better chance of writing a good persuasive essay.

I hardly addressed the conventions of good writing, choosing rather to focus on the content, but there is also much room for improvement in the intro, body, and conclusion.

The intro has 2 major aspects. The opening sentence and thesis, both of which need improvement. The body is simply your ability to expand on those points, and organize and coordinate your arguments. Your conclusion will summarize why your thesis is right, and memorably no less. It will not include new ideas.

Practice makes perfect.
Mar 13, 2009, 10:28am   #3
latror:
First, women have the right to control their own bodies.

It seems you are trying to say that pregnancy is a desease? And a woman can just 'catch' pregnancy like a flu? If woman got pregnant and this is an 'unwanted pregnancy' and this was not a rape --->>> that means she CANNOT CONTROL HER OWN BODY! She FAILED to control her body once and that's why she proved she is not capable of making such serious decisions! Do you think a flight traffic controller would be given another chance if by his own mistake he failed to notice two airplanes to crash and warn them ahead of time? Why do you propose to give a woman 'the right' to control her body if she in fact PROVED she cannot control her body?

latror:
If we know the child will be born with defects then there is no point in having the mother keep the baby if she chooses not to.

You sound like adolf hitler and his theory about 'master race'! Let's see, through general testing of the fetus mother is told her baby may have hearing problem. Is this enough to kill the baby? Going further, once genetic testing advance, mother will be told her baby probably won't be a professional basketball player because his bones won't be able to last through a professional athlete training. But mother has always wanted her son to be a great basketball player, just like her grandfather was. Will it be enough reason to kill the baby??? From your way of thinking it will be because mother will get stressed and her life will be ruined because her child won't be able to fulfill her dreams.

Now think what kind of problem YOU have - are you a math genius? Hmm, you aren't..? Then you may want to ask your mother (who is your legal guardian and you are her child, she lives and feeds you so she should have THE RIGHT to do what is BEST for you). Ask her if she doesn't want to kill you because she may be depressed because you are not what she wanted you to be!

latror:
Also advocates of abortion believe that abortion is seriously wrong but women should do what is best for them and their babies.

"BEST for their babies"? Is woman God to decide what is best for another human being? Read my sentence above - maybe your mother is thinking that you are not good enough and saying goodbye to this world will be best for you?

Also, you talk about 'pregnancy risks'? Give me a break - when mother eats junk food or smokes cigarettes then there are more risks for her health. Why don't you care about woman's health when she is not pregnant?

I'm shocked to hear your opinions on the subject. When you are an adult and will be deciding about the laws of this society.. some people will be glad they didn't have a chance to live long enough to have anything to do with people like you.
Mar 13, 2009, 10:33am   #4
You have chosen an issue that evokes very strong emotional reactions on both sides (as evidenced by Mustafa's comment, which was longer than your own essay). This doesn't mean that you should abandon the topic -- on the contrary, this is probably a sign that the topic is really worth writing about. Nor does it mean that you cannot advance a strong pro-choice case. But, it does mean that you have a greater obligation than usual to deal with your opponent's arguments, and this is something your essay doesn't do at the moment.

Most importantly, you completely ignore the main issue in the abortion debate. Your arguments are based upon a premise (that the fetus is not a human life) that your opponents don't accept. If you want your essay to be convincing to people who don't already agree with you, you are going to need to come up with an argument in defense of that premise.

To understand my above point better, consider your first main argument: "It is women's right to make decisions about their own bodies." This is perfectly true, but it misses the point of the pro-life movement, which argues that a woman who gets an abortion isn't making a decision about her body, but about that of the fetus. Abortion is only about a woman's right to choose if you first view the fetus as nothing more than an extension of a woman's body, which is precisely what pro-life advocates do not accept.

And the law is in fact a reflection of a compromise between the two camps. Women are legally allowed to have an abortion only up until a certain point in their pregnancies. In the U.S., I believe the period is 24 weeks, in most of Europe, only 12. This reflects the fact that, at some point, the fetus presumably becomes a human being in its own right. There is no reason why the moment of being born, of leaving the body, should be viewed as inherently investing the baby with a more human nature than it had five minutes prior to being born, for instance.

So, if you want to improve your essay, you are going to have explain why the fetus should not be considered as a separate human life OR why, even if the fetus is considered as a separate human life, a woman should still have the right to terminate it.

Likewise, you argue that "Another reason that women should be able to have abortions is in case the mothers are too young and unable to take care their babies." But of course bringing the baby to term doesn't mean that the woman has to keep it if she cannot provide it a good life. She could always put it up for adoption, for instance. You need to counter this objection.

There are also other issues you should consider. For instance, many pro-life advocates also view abortion as an abdication of personal responsibility. Pregnancy isn't like a common cold, something that a woman catches for no reason. It has a very specific cause, and can be easily prevented. And, of course, the feminist arguments in favor of legalized abortion sometimes bring with them a certain amount of irony, as when they are used to defend the right a woman to get an abortion because she finds out she is carrying a daughter instead of a son, a practice that has led to a noticeable demographic gender imbalance in China and India.

Hmmmm . . . my own comment seems to be getting a bit long, too, so I'll end here. But don't be discouraged -- this is a very complex topic, and you are off to a good start. You just need to add more to counter the obvious objections of those who disagree with you to complete your case.
Arriving at this thread, I have read the essay, and I can only imagine what all these posts say in response to it. Lan Pham, I applaud you for being bold enough to tackle such a controversial subject. I have not read other people's responses yet, but I bet they are harsh. Before I look at the other posts in this thread, I want to remember to tell you to get rid of the first sentence because it is unnecessary and weak. Also

Critics of abortion say stopping a fetus's life is wrong. But If the baby's health is at question during the pregnancy a woman should have the right to choose for herself.

Advocates Opponents of abortion believe that death is harmful for the fetus and the fetus has the right to have a life just like ours. One opponent of abortion is Stone. For Stone, "Death seriously harms the fetus and so the fetus has a right to life because death deprives the fetus of conscious goods which it is the fetus's biological natural to make itself have."

(Did stone really write that death is "harmful to the fetus?" It seems absurd to say "death is harmful." Of course it is harmful; it is death!)

However when a woman's health is at risk or they will give birth to a child with defects then abortion would be better for the mother and for the baby.

(This sentence above is weak, because you are saying the baby is better off dead. Would you tell a person with a birth defect that she is better off dead?)

If we know the child will be born with defects then there is no point in having have the mother keep the baby if she chooses not to.

(Again, pretty weak. However, you could write: If we know the child will be born with defects then there is no point in having have whether or not the mother should be forced to give birth to the baby is called into question.)

Now, I'll look at what the other people said...

HEY, those are some great points made here. Try not to take any of the criticism personally, because this forum would be useless without criticism. This topic is grave enough to deserve such scrutiny.

Yes, like Mustafa said, "advocate" means someone who supports something. Also, like Mustafa said, the word "rape" deserves its own paragraph instead of being thrown in like an afterthought. Most importantly, like Mustafa said, "practice makes perfect."

Rich sounds like a passionate pro-life advocate. It's too bad his advice lacks credibility, because at the end he reveals that he has bad feelings toward you. You can't influence someone very well if you reveal that you have bad feelings toward them, because they know you don't have their best interests in mind. This essay is GREAT for getting one's personal philosophy to start taking form... it's great for opening the lines of communication.

To tell you the truth, I am a good, experienced writer with strong opinions, and I can't even bring myself to write about abortion. For some questions, there really is no right answer. Keep abortion illegal, and people will do it themselves, or with the help of immoral, secret abortion clinics. Throughout human history, abortion has been going on; it is one of the most common horrifying things.

Arguments about whether or not it should be legal are different from arguments directed at parents considering having abortions. Know what I mean? In this case, it helps to decide who you are arguing with. Your essay seems to be about what should be legal. If I wrote an essay like this, I would write is as an argument made to an actual person considering having an abortion.

Even though there are a lot of good arguments in this thread, I think it is impossible to come up with a "right" answer from a policy perspective. The truth is that you cannot prevent people fro having abortions if they really want to. The policy question is what laws to create and how to enforce them. For that, you need to go all the way back to the foundation of moral philosophy -- so people will never agree!

I hope this thread helps you as you revise your essay!
Mar 13, 2009, 11:30am   #6
Thanks for the feedback. But keep mind that this is my first argumentive paper and its for a begining English class. I'm more worried about my citation and grammer at this point. If anyone can help with that I would be greatfull. EF_Sean, your feedback will help me with my conclusion, thanks.
P.S: This is my paper. I'm not 100% go for abortion.
Mar 13, 2009, 12:41pm   #7
My message was strong, but you shouldn't take it personally indeed. I think nowadays most teachers are PU**IES and they are in fact useless! Instead of teaching they just 'listen' and agree with everything a young and inexperienced person says.

Today you go to school and will be praised by your teacher just because you have your own opinion (too many times distorted by the media which only care about their profits, not your psyche). But teacher won't tell you that you are on the wrong track because they are useless humans without guts and their own opinions! That's why more and more anomalous behaviours grow in our societies. Everything is RELATIVE. You kill someone, teacher will tell you 'that's OK, you had the right to do it because you were stressed out' etc. etc. It is NOT normal in my book.

You know what you should do? Go to your teacher and ask him/her straight: "Teacher, will you please tell me what is YOUR OPINION on abortion?" Then report the response you get (if you get any) here.
Mar 13, 2009, 03:55pm   #8
Can any one tell me about text citation? I also have trouble with use end text citation. I found information, I use someone idea but that person used the idea from someone book so how can i make end text citation in this case. thankss
Mar 13, 2009, 05:26pm   #9
You can Google whatever citation system you are supposed to be using to get details on how to cite properly. For the case you mention, I normally just ellipse out the reference and cite the material I have in front of me. I believe that you are actually supposed to track down the original, though, but I have never had any professor call me on it.
Mar 13, 2009, 11:08pm   #11
TO ALL CRITICS OF ABORTIONS. I am not an advocate of abortion. I just pick a random side and I tried my best to prove my point. Simple, I need to write agumentive paper to hand in to my teacher. Keep in my that it is not my real opinion about it. My teacher did not required my real opinion ( of course not). I opened this topic because I need help with my writing skill. I'm not open this topic to agure with people about whether or not women should have the right to have abortions. SIMPLE, i JUST PICK STRONG OPITION TOPIC, HOPE I CAN IMPROVE MY WRITING SKILL. THAT IS IT!
Mar 14, 2009, 07:23pm   #12
That's fine. Ignore any of the posts made by people who are making the argument personal. To improve your argumentative writing, on any issue, you need to be able to present a logical series of reasons in favor of your position (or the position you are arguing, at any rate) as well as to deal with the obvious objections your opponents are going to raise to your arguments. So, as you revise your essay, try to tighten the logic behind your reasoning, and to respond to some of the objections raised by the people here. Try to avoid, as some of the posters have, mingling ad hominem attacks with your arguments, though, as that always weakens your case.
Yep, this is a great experiment in this thread... volitile subject matter.

About the in-text citations... to get you going, as a rule of thumb while you try to get good at referencing... just put the author's name in parentheses after some info you got from their book or article.

So...

The second draft should equal first draft minus 10 percent (King).

That is how to do it if you are using MLA. Are you using MLA?

If you use a direct quote, you have to give the page number:

King says, "The second draft is equal to the first draft minus ten percent" (14).

or:

"The second draft should be the first draft minus ten percent" (King 14).

That is how to do it in MLA style...
Mar 15, 2009, 12:54am   #14
EF_Sean:
Ignore any of the posts made by people who are making the argument personal.

Sure, it's always best to listen to lawyer-style talk (relative, impersonal, and impartial). Those who dare to go over the borders with different ideas should be punished or ignored like in perfect communism.

And from the logical point of view all argumentative subject ARE personal; otherwise there would be nothing to discuss.
Mar 15, 2009, 10:45am   #15
Rich Monte:

Sure, it's always best to listen to lawyer-style talk (relative, impersonal, and impartial)


I prefer to think of it as philosopher-style talk (reasonable, respectful, and objective). And yes, it always best to maintain such a tone in these forums, and probably in all of your communications with others.

Rich Monte:
Those who dare to go over the borders with different ideas should be punished or ignored like in perfect communism.


Attacking other people personally for their beliefs is neither daring nor different. It is in fact lamentably cowardly and common. And yes, such people should be ignored.

Rich Monte:
And from the logical point of view all argumentative subject ARE personal


One can respectfully disagree with another's opinion, without personally attacking the person one is disagreeing with.
Mar 16, 2009, 02:40pm   #16
Thank you so much for your help, EF_ Sean and EF_Kevin! I have a final test this saturday. Can you give me some tips how to write a good introduction paragraph, how to make a good thesis and how to deverlop my idea in body paragraph? Any tips will be appreciate! Thank you
Mar 16, 2009, 02:51pm   #17
For the introduction to any essay, start by giving any general background information on the subject you think your reader needs to know. Then, define any key terms you are going to be using. Then, present you specific thesis. Finally, summarize your key points in defense of that thesis.

The thesis itself should be specific enough for you to be able to discuss it fairly fully in your body given the length limitations you face while still being general enough to be debatable.

For the body paragraphs, start with a topic sentence, provide examples and evidence in support of that topic sentence, then end with a concluding sentence that ties your point back to your overall thesis.
Yes, that's right! Good insight. A good essay is at least a little argumentative, in the sense that it ASSERTS something meaningful. It is not meaningful if it is obvious, and that is what we mean by making sure an essay is "debatable". If it is obvious, why write it?

Now, if you want to get REALLY argumentative, in a persuasive essay, remember to write a paragraph that explains the opposite argument and why it is wrong -- do this just before the conclusion paragraph.

Most importantly, make the argumentative essay organized. That means you have to write a topic sentence at the front of each paragraph --- a sentence that shouts out the main point -- and then make sure the whole para is about that point.

Good luck!!



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