Applied Ethics – Abortion



The issue of abortion is not alien in the world. So, it is not an uncommon moral issue. Over the years, it has been regarded as one of the most controversial moral issues. The rationale behind this is clear: discussing abortion is tantamount to discussing the value of the human person. In essence, the issue of abortion bothers greatly on one of the basic human rights: LIFE.

Accordingly, various pertinent questions have arisen regarding the controversy of abortion:

Is abortion morally permissible?

What is human life and when does human life begin?

Is the life of the pregnant mother more valuable than the life of her unborn child or vice versa?

Does a woman have the moral prerogative to terminate her pregnancy?

Does religion have the moral sanction over and above the state regarding abortion issue?

Accordingly, the above questions and many related others have attracted enormous contributions from different fields of human endeavour. For instance, the issue of abortion is hugely considered in the fields of philosophy, medical science, bio-ethics, and most essentially, religious organizations. Nevertheless, the enormous contributions or attempts by these fields of human enquiry to address the issue of abortion seem not to have been conclusive – the more reason why it has been regarded as a controversial moral issue. Moreover, in the discipline of philosophy (specifically in Applied Ethics), one or more ethical theories are applied to a controversial moral problem, like abortion, in order to address it.

Consequently, the primary goal of this essay is to address the issue of abortion. In order to do this, we shall apply Mill’s ethical theory: Utilitarianism. By way of methodology, we shall first of all, clarify the major concepts of this paper. Thereafter, the problem of abortion and the arguments for and against it shall be considered. After this, we shall examine Mill’s ethical theory and attempt to show whether or not it addresses the problem of abortion. However, before this, we shall give a brief biography of John Stuart Mill. At the end will be the conclusion of this essay which shall be preceded by some critical remarks.

Author: Bro Samuel Akalite

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