Moral Theory: Don Marquis And Judith Thomson

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PHIL 220 Moral Theory Online, Fall 2014 Assignment #2 ID: 20465908 November 26th, 2014 The topic of abortion has been continuously been debated in society because of moral implications that it may hold, in topics such as religion, politics and ethics. Philosophers Don Marquis and Judith Thomson both express and defend their extremely contrasting liberal and conservative views on abortion. Thomson defends abortion in her argument, and believes that abortion is morally permissible due to the rights a mother has with her body (Thomson, 220). Marqui however argues that abortion is morally wrong, except with rare cases, and that it ranks equal to the moral category of killing a human adult, as you are denying the fetus a future (Marqui, 213).…show more content…
Thomson’s argument is in the defense of abortion, and that is permissible a majority of the time. She begins with presenting the traditional conservative debate of “drawing the line”, on when the fetus is considered a person is discussed. To avoid making an arbitrary choice, and the slippery slope argument, Thomson states that for the sake of her argument a fetus is a person from the moment of conception (Thomson, 220). The conservative approach would continue the abortion argument by saying given the fetus is a person, aborting would essentially be morally equivalent to murder. Next, Thomson uses three thought experiments as analogies to situations where a woman is pregnant and wishes to have an abortion. The reasoning of the experiments is to prove that abortion is morally permissible, and while Thomson does not agree that a fetus is one yet bases the experiments as another person to prove that personhood is irrelevant when it comes to permissibility of abortion (Thomson, 230). In the “Violinist Argument”, a famous violinist is ill and in order to survive is connected to the woman for treatment and it may take up to nine months. The attachment is made between two innocent people, without the consent of the woman. This is an excellent analogy of pregnancy due to rape, in which abortion is morally permissibly by Thomson (Thomson, 221). Neither party had intentions of getting attached, as the Violin Society orchestrated the association of two people, just as a fetus has no intention of being associated to a mother in the instance of rape. In this scenario the intentions of the Violinist, as well as those of the fetus are not known. The most important point that can be determined from this experiment is that just as the woman did not provide consent to the rapist to impregnate her, she did not allow the Violinist to attach himself. Therefore,

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