The Ethics of Abortion

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At first, I was disappointed that your report on Colorado's Human Life Amendment - declaring that personhood begins at the instant of fertilization - did not give the reasoning that led its religious advocates to choose this time point ["New Abortion Wars," January 14].

But their website reveals there are no reasons: the amendment "simply states what should be obvious to everyone." If the group's intuition is that only a fertilized egg can progress to a human being, this intuition is belied by Jesus' virgin birth. And most eggs die while the future mother is an embryo, putting the Creator in an awkward position if they are persons.

Douglas Brash


Woodbridge , Conn.  

The repeal of Roe v. Wade, were it ever to happen, would not achieve anything: abortions would still be performed, though they would be illegal. The lives of women would be endangered, even though they are entitled to as much protection as the fetus is. The moral problem that confronts all of us is that we condemn young women who in their exploration of themselves as sexual persons are penalized by unwanted pregnancies. Men are equally responsible for those pregnancies, yet they can walk away. The moral imperative is to respect human life in all its forms. This includes women who have as much a claim to justice as the rest of us.

Ignacio L. Götz


Point Harbor , N.C.  

Until we find a successful way to colonize other planets, we would do well to implement methods to curb population growth rather than promote it. Here are some programs the federal government should fund: science based sex education in the public schools, science based birth control education for the public at large, access to birth control devices and/or medication, voluntary male and female sterilization.

Joan Kroll


Springfield , I ll.  

A fertilized egg is a single cell resultant from union of sperm and egg, but this term no longer applies after cell division. What implants one week later is not a fertilized egg, but a multi-cellular embryo.

J. C. Willke, M.D.


Cincinnati , O hio