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Essay on Abortion and Morality

Abortion, contraception and sterilization are all modern form of medical intervention in human reproductive function. In the XX century, they became widespread and occurs on a background of fundamental changes in its moral evaluation and legal status. The civilized world – primarily the states of Europe, USA, Russia – tried to get rid of the tradition in which they existed almost fifteen centuries. We are talking about the tradition of moral and religious convictions and legal prohibition of abortion. It is known, for example, that abortion was punishable by death in all European countries for several centuries. Over the past forty years as a result of long discussions and deliberations the legislative ban on abortion was canceled or there was its weakening in one degree or another. At the same time, there are still states that are not affected by the legalization of abortion. This is a country with a strong Catholic influence (e.g., Portugal).

Since the beginning of the XX century, the issue of the legalization of abortion remains a cause for hot debates among the experts, civil demonstrations, and session in the Parliament. The acuteness of the problems in discussing abortion persists despite the fact that this problem is “as old as the world.” Historically, the physician’s attitude to abortion is one of the first and fundamental ethical and medical issues are still relevant today. This is due to the fact that the abortion issue concentrates the relationship between people at the level of moral, legal, socio-political, religious, scientific consciousness. Considering the problem of abortion in each of these levels, you can answer the question of why it is a basic and fundamental problem of modern biomedical ethics.

Ethical and medical levels of the abortion issue question the attitude of doctors, medical societies and associations to the practice of abortion , which has its own history and its own logic. In this logic, there are two opposing positions. The movement from one to the other is the history of the issue of the ethical and medically attitude to abortion. The first position is expressed in the Hippocratic Oath. Among many medical manipulations, Hippocrates specifically allocates abortion and promises: “I will not give to a woman an abortive remedy.” Thus, in V. BC Hippocrates fixes the position of medical community about the ethics of non-participation of a physician in the artificial abortion. This position is all the more important that the right is contrary to the opinion of the great moralists and legislators of ancient Greece on the feasibility of a natural abortion. Their views are summarized and expressed by Aristotle.

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