I Do Not Need Religion to Oppose Abortion


All too often, in our arguments on abortion, we give absolute power to the rights of the mother.

As a child conceived out of wedlock, I am thankful that my rights as a human, to exist, were not molested by parents that would think their own convenience more important than doing the right thing. I can accept abortion in cases of rape or absolute, immanent, and otherwise unavoidable death to the mother.  Those are unfortunate exceptions that must be taken accounted for in our imperfect world.  But these are also very rare and should not be used as a stop gap to justify abortion as a norm or as an issue of a woman’s health.

Every day that I breath, or see the sun rise and set, I can be thankful that I was conceived to a mother and father who took the high road. Not the road that would have doomed to me to being an “unperson.”  I do not need religion as justification, my existence itself, at least to me, is justification.

I could have been born to parents who wanted to get a promotion more than see me born.  Or parents who wanted their own selfish secondary desires fulfilled, over the most basic of mine.  My parents knew (when they had sex) that I was a possibility.  Something that, when I began to grow, they did not destroy.

I do not need religion to justify my hatred of flippant and on-demand abortions.  I am my own justification of this.  I can admit there are a few, almost statistically none existent examples of justified abortion, rape being the most common of this blue moon.
However, there is my right as a person to exist, which overshadows their rights to an easier life.  They chose to have sex (hence where the rape caveat comes in), therefore they must live with whatever happens because of it.

I will also take offense, as a human, at the thought that a fetus is not the same as a human.
Until someone gives birth to a shoe, a tree, or a printer there is no justification that it is not the same as human.

From zygote to fully formed and viable child, it still has the same end point and killing it is murder.  Just like how, in life, there is justifiable murder there is also justifiable abortion. But innocence in this murder must be justified in the same understanding of extenuating circumstances that the murder of a born human enjoys.

I believe that all humans adults should be able to love whomever they want. I believe that all human adults should be allowed have consenting sex with whomever they want. I also believe that with this wide freedom comes an understanding and acceptance of that action.

The right of the unborn that comes from that action must be taken into consideration. The right of a human that cannot speak for itself.  The right of the child whose own parents may wish to terminate it. Their right to live, their right to love, and their rights as a human, are the same their parents already enjoy. Their right as an equal human.

* Joseph A. Mance was born in central Florida in 1988 and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area. He attended Purdue University in the class of 2010 and is a former member of the US Special Operations Command as a psychological operations specialist. He spent time in Afghanistan as a private military contractor in 2010-11. A nationalist in foreign affairs and a libertarian in domestic affairs, Joseph is currently unmarried with no children living in Paris, Kentucky on an 11 acre estate.

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  1. Even being a Jesus Freak, i’ve never liked the idea that being anti abortion is somehow a religious thing. well written!

  2. Thank you Mr Joseph Mance. Thank you for your service to our nation and for taking a stand for the least of us.
    In the Declaration of Independence the founding Fathers where very clear, LIFE is a right. But some 198 years later. The life of the unborn was no longer recognized. And the Supreme Court failed to uphold the right recognized what the founders understood to be a right.
    How meny good and decent people such as yourself have been denied t convienceopportunities to prove themselfs in life. Bec
    The site just FUBARD

  3. Thank you for this wonderful article. Too many people will disagree with this because they believe abortion is an issue of women’s rights and a women’s right to choose to keep a baby rather than an issue of the right of an unborn child to live. In my opinion, when two consenting adults choose to have sex, they also choose to live with the consequences, be that STDs or pregnancy. Many modern libertarians will believe that regulating abortion is not a matter of the state because it is a right of the individual to choose. This point of view disregards the rights of the unborn child and is also misguided. Thank you again for your words.

    • I disagree. While I agree that it is immoral to terminate the pregnancy, even in the case of rape (see the criticisms of evictionism, or my comment above), the state still has no role in regulating this. Private citizens may intervene in the same way that in a disproportionate response to a property violation, say someone trying to kill someone for accidentally taking one half step on to their property, they may intervene. Additionally, as was the case in 19th century monarchic Europe, a free, or at least much freer society, would tend to have lower and lower time preferences exponentially while investment and future income would rise proportionally to that, this would see the social order being much more conservative with long term monogamous relationships, eating properly, an importance on family and community, etc, being the norm.

  4. I read your argument with interest, as I find the subject to be far more an issue of what one chooses to believe than a matter of right and wrong.

    I’m curious though, in your view that abortion is murder, does the fact that the human life being terminated is a result of rape really negate its right to life? In no other area of jurisprudence that I’m aware of can a person be executed for a crime not their own.

    It seems that the justification for doing so is that the mother has a right to not have an invasion of her body be lengthened by force of law, but in asserting so, this line of reasoning admits that there is a basis for terminating unborn life in order to protect another person’s right to bodily autonomy.

    Once we’ve allowed that, and said “a person has the right to kill an unborn child if the child is not the result of their own decision, because it intrudes on their right to bodily autonomy”, then we’ve taken the role of deciding under which circumstances a pregnant woman does, and does not, have the right to kill an unborn child in order to maintain her bodily autonomy.

    At this point, we’ve crossed over into arbitrary choices as to which circumstances of conception allow for murder, and which do not. Those arbitrary decisions are far more difficult to justify, and often come down to “well, I really feel it should be this way”.

    Then we run into questions – we accept rape, do we accept youth, if someone is too young to make that decision? How young is too young? If a person is not old enough to decide to put alcohol into their body, are they old enough to decide to put a baby into it? That seems like it would be a very arbitrary decision to make.

    Like I said, I find the topic to be wonderfully interesting. I do hope you won’t find my questions disrespectful, as I’m just curious in exploring the topic.

    • This is a great reply to an article I didn’t find particularly satisfying. I particularly like your reference to “bodily autonomy” it’s a very useful phrasing, and i think has real power in this argument.

      I agree also that with what you said initally that the debate is “an issue of what one chooses to believe”. I think one of the reasons abortion is easily accepted by some is the alien appearnce of a fetus. In photos the early forms of a fetus one could be forgiven for thinking it was a microscopic image of some virus or bacterium. This I think dissasosciates our evolutionary reflex to protect anything of the same species.

      It is harder to logically seperate a fetus from a born baby. My personal stance is something along the lines of, if it’s never born it won’t be worried about dying, sounds harsh but its my truth. I also find it hard to equate the wellbeing of one/two grown adults with the potential happiness of a future person.

      • If you discovered someone in your airplane who was stowed away, would it be moral to throw them out of the plane if they stowed away on their own? If you invited someone into your airplane, would it be moral to throw them out mid flight? Would it be moral to throw them out of the plane if someone else stowed them away against their will?

        • no to either of those things, obviously! I see where this is going and the analogy is completely different. To me a foetus is of similar standing to a bacterium or a virus, its a form of “life” but i dont equate them morally to humans.

          • I don’t think it is idiotic. Ok, so granted I appreciate one will develop into a fully grown human and the other is non sentient tiny blob, but in terms of conciousness, experience, and self awareness a fetus is barely alive, it doesn’t have an identity of itself yet.

            I disagree this viewpoint leeds to minimal punishment for “wanton destruction of a fetus”, its still a profound crime to cause so much physical and emotional pain to a woman and this on its own provides reason for harsh punishment, but rightly not as severe as murder.

            Are you seriously saying that it is immoral to abort a fetus that is spawned from an incident of rape?? really??

            I don’t appreciate you presenting your opinion as fact on an issue that is so not cut and dry. I appreciate the fact my argument is my opinion and i see that there are good reasons for not supporting abortion I just don’t think you have given any.

      • “I think one of the reasons abortion is easily accepted by some is the alien appearnce of a fetus.” Untrue, I think that is not the factor that convinces people. Everyone know what a fetus will eventually look like unterminated, and late term fetuses don’t look that terrible. The reason why abortion, divorce, drug use, and general parasitism and degeneracy are on the rise is because of the raising of time preferences by the state. In a completely free, private property society, the opposite trend would occur as has been the case in societies freer than ours but not as free as the former

        • what do you mean by raising of time preferences?

          You say yourself ‘late term fetuses dont look that terrible’ as in, the more human it looks, the easier it is to care about, or the harder it is to not care about. I’m not saying it should pursuade anyone or that it makes an argument for or against. I just think it does have a subconcious-y kind of influence.

          • High time preference refers to wanting a higher income or more goods now at the expense of goods in the future. Whereas in monarchic europe when people were far freer, time preferences kept lowering exponentially with investment and income rising proportionally, but in the era of public ownership of the state time preferences are far higher

          • I see what you mean and that’s actually a very interesting idea, can you recommend a book/author on this?

            I do believe however that there would have been proponents of abortion in monarchic Europe (if the same levels of belief in Christianity were proportional to what it is today) despite being freer.

  5. Abortion is a thorny issue as it is the result of what may have been a poor choice in life. It may also result from the failure of contraception to properly work. Either way it poses a dilemma for the individuals involved and for society as a whole. Of course the decision to have sex without protection creates this problem and unless we address this first we will not find any meaningful resolution to the question of abortion. The problems of rape, contraception that fails, and the like are special problems.

    We may ask ourselves what should be the penalty for deliberate unprotected sex? Bear the child to term and then farm out for adoption? Force the father to marry the mother and then force both of them to raise the child together? You see, it is all very well to take a stance that abortion is murder and must not be allowed, but that leaves more questions unanswered. We have ghettos full of young and angry black men who were the “victims” of unprotected sex. The results are often that the fathers aren’t around and that the mothers only want the child for the welfare payment received every month. Perhaps if we cut off welfare than we might slow down the number of children born out of wedlock and doomed to a life of poverty and crime. On the other hand, without welfare that might create the demand for more abortions, or murder in your words. One can see that there are no easy or quick solutions and we haven’t even scratched the surface of the problems.

    As for abortion on demand paid by the public (taxpayer), I am against that practice. We should not make a habit of enabling men and women to do what we consider moral wrongs. So we don’t pay for the abortion on demand and we don’t pay for welfare. What might be the possible results? Personal accountability? Find your own solutions to your problem? It could happen. It has happened before in our history as a nation. If you or your parents have the money then you get an abortion, if not, you raise the child or pawn it off to relatives or even adopt it out. You see, these are the issues we should be discussing. Morality is nice but it is a luxury the poor can’t afford and the rich avoid.

      • Pardon me if I point out that your reply is rather vague. What is a “freer” (more free) society? What are the consequences of a more free society? And how would a more free society deals with these problems in your estimation?

        Individuals do not need to belong to or believe in a particular religion to oppose or support abortion. An individual need not acknowledge a moral position for opposition or support of abortion. Given that at a minimum a goon many individuals use some moral argument for or against that issue then the more free a society may be does not mean that it will deal with this issue.

        Many individuals such as myself do not want the state (federal, state, local, or church in the case of a theocracy) involved in this issue. The consequences of state involvement means that the state decides what is moral, or at least legal, almost the same ideal, when it comes to abortion. Abortion is a social issue and not a political one as far as I can tell. In practice, politics tends not to follow moral precepts while society does. Given that assumption, we may look at abortion with a social view.

        We must note that pregnancy involves a man and a woman, both of whom are fertile. This is a natural biological process. Our concern is with the human behavior that led to the pregnancy and behavior is subject to moral review by individuals and groups, both which are members of society.

        Abortion also involves two individuals, the mother to be and the individual performing the process. Usually women do not self abort but we recognize that they can. As pregnancy results from the behaviors or two individuals outlined above, so abortion results from the behaviors of two individuals. We may view pregnancy that results as a consequence of behavior that does not involve a social union (usually express as a marriage or other such commitment) as immoral or outside the best interest of society. And we may view behavior that results in abortion as immoral and outside the best interest of society.

        My main points is that both pregnancy and abortion are not the consequences of one individual’s decision regardless of trying to argue that some conditions may make them so. Rape offers the most extreme problem when it comes to human behavior. But I am only outlining the problem with no proposed solution. I am not offering any moral precept for all to follow. Morals, or morality, is both an individual and group belief and set of behaviors. These behaviors are rarely exactly the same due to individual differences, but they may be very close in consequences.

        So all societies (freedom is a relative expression of society and individuals) must deal with the problem of a set of moral precepts or general morality. after all, morality is a belief system. Then it can deal with issues or problems such as theft, murder, abortion, rape, and etc. Right now the main problems in American society is that we no longer have a common morality. That is, a common belief is a common set of moral precepts. In so many ways we have allowed or even encouraged government interference in the definition of a few of our moral precepts or even the elimination of a few of them. We have become a fragment society with all the consequences of those collective actions. This is where our discussion begins.

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