Begging the question

(Much of this post is drawn from The Case for Life chapter one, again.)

At the risk of being redundant, here is another post regarding the unborn as human beings.  Behind many arguments for abortion is a logical fallacy called “begging the question.”  “Begging the question” is assuming what you are attempting to prove – it does not mean “to raise the question.”

Note that fallacy in these arguments against the pro-life position:

“If you don’t like abortions, don’t have one.  It isn’t your place to judge someone else’s decision.  Don’t force your views on her.”

“Abortion is a personal decision, so the government shouldn’t get involved.”

“No one should have to bring an unwanted child into the world.  Who’s taking care of the abused and abandoned kids already out there?”

“Legalized abortion is better than back-alley abortions.”

Each one of these objections assumes that the unborn are not human.  Try trotting out the toddler.  No one would be tolerant if you said you had decided to kill two-year olds.  No one would hold the second position if the topic in question were child abuse.   And with regard to the third objection, isn’t murder the worst kind of child abuse?  Arguing for legalized abortion on the grounds that back-alley abortions are dangerous is like saying “Since some people will die attempting to kill others, the state should make it legal for them, so it is safer for them.”

I hope you see again how important it is to simplify the debate by focusing it on the question “what is the unborn?”

The misuse of the phrase “begs the question” is one of my pet peeves, so I’ve included this little card for your amusement / edification / instruction.    😉


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