We have become sensitive to the quality of life. Many conceived infants will be unhappy and will not have a life of quality. Abortion prevents this problem and solves it.
a) One may have reasons to think that the context in which the child will live is not favorable to the happiness of the child to be born. Faced with such a dilemma, we have to ask ourselves which solution is the more humane: abort the infant or make an effort to create for him the best conditions of existence?
b) The proposition we have just examined rests on the following presupposition: life isn't worth living unless one begins with a certain threshold of quality. It is obvious that we are in the realm of complete subjectivity. What is this quality of life, and where is its threshold found? What makes for the happiness of one will not do so for another, and Peter begins to smile at what makes Paul think of suicide.
c) If it is lawful to kill a human being because he risks being so poor that his life would no longer be worth living, then it is also legitimate to kill all those who are already dying of hunger. Evidently no one would dare support this consequence, as compulsory a logic as it holds. The flaw of such reasoning thus comes to light: the solution to poverty is not to kill the poor man, but to share our goods with him.
d) Our society has never been as rich as it is today. It will suffice to reach a political decision to give maternity aid that is well thought out, well applied, and well controlled so that every infant is born having at his disposal the material minimum required to assure a worthy existence for him or her.
Back to "The Unborn Child".
Back to "Summary".