Felicity H. Utah

"A Person is a Person No Matter How Small"

Human life begins at conception, therefore the unborn have rights that are undeniable.

When does life begin? This is a very controversial question being debated in the nation when it comes to the heated conversation of abortion and whether the fetus has all the same rights as a human being and if that fetus is in fact a human being. According to the article, “Undisputed Scientific Fact: Human Life begins at Conception, or Fertilization,” by Steven Ertelt claims, “Human life begins at fertilization, the process during which a male gamete or sperm unites with a female gamete or oocyte (ovum) to form a single cell called a zygote.” This complex process creates new life. This means that when a sperm penetrates an ovum or egg a new embryo is created that has genes and characteristics that are completely unique to itself. No other human ever will or ever has had the specific genes that this brand new embryo has. Steven Ertelt’s claim raises the question, if this embryo is a person wouldn’t it have the same rights as you or I? Although some readers would say, “What of the woman’s rights”, I question the fetus’s rights.

When does a person become a person? Or when does a person have rights? Children are under the legal jurisdiction of their parents, yet even children have basic fundamental rights. In the preamble to The Declaration of Independence it states, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed, by their Creator, with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.” These rights extend to the unborn; they too have the right to life. These pre-embryos as Pro-choicers like to call them are just the beginning of human life yet they are undeniably human. In the article, When do Human Beings Begin? "Scientific" Myths and Scientific Facts Dianne N. Irving asserts, “A human zygote is a human being. It is not a "potential" or a "possible" human being. It’s an actual human being with the potential to grow bigger and develop its capacities.” This human zygote isn’t a lifeless blob of tissue; it is merely just the very beginning of a person’s life.

Although some may argue that it’s the women’s choice--it’s the woman's body, I contend that once conception has taken place the women is past the point of having a choice concerning the life that is in her body. She should accept and be aware of the responsibility that comes with producing a child. Her baby isn’t a punishment for her unplanned pregnancy like Pro-choice views contend. Her baby is a gift. Women have more freedom of choice with their baby then they realize. There are many couples who are unable to produce and have children. Putting a baby up for adoption is a beautiful thing that doesn’t result in guilt and the pain that comes with losing your child to abortion. Women can decide the family that receives their baby. I have seen in my own life children bring joy not only to the family that receives the child but brings peace to the mother knowing that she didn’t harm her child. My own step-mom got pregnant in the army and decided to raise her daughter. Lauren my step-sister has blessed the lives of many with her intelligence, thirst for knowledge, loving heart, delightful personality, and the wonderful sister she is.

Therefore, there should be a change in policy. Roe v. Wade which gave women the choice to terminate a pregnancy should be redefined and more restrictive on what situation or circumstance permits for a women to have the abortion procedure. It’s time that abortion should be brought into the light again. It’s time for us to reevaluate the rights of the fetus. Abortion should be thought of a last resort instead of a way of convenience.

Spanish Fork High School

AP Language 16-17

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