Abortion and the law

The question of abortions being right or wrong is not the political issue. The issue is what is the relationship of abortion to the law. Freidrick Bastiat teaches us that law is the collective organization of the individual right to protect life, liberty, and property. Therefore laws that are not based on individual rights are not laws at all, but simply force without justice. Unless people accept that laws concerning abortion are based on law, the feuding will not cease.

Until the Supreme Court decides when and what is a person, the issue will continue to divide our country and our political parties. I believe that the court will eventually decide that life begins at conception.  This is because of the accepted use of DNA evidence as a determiner of guilt or innocence in current court cases.  A person is defined by his unique DNA and that is formed at conception.

Furthermore the very condition of pregnancy is the result of a social contract between two consulting adults.  Either one or both of these adults can take simple steps to insure that a third person is not created.  Therefore all pregnancies are a result a of choice by two separate individuals. The same way nuclear missile launches require two people to turn their keys simultaneously. Treating the condition of pregnancy under contract law works better than all other systems. The government has a legitimate role in the enforcement of contracts.

The idea of pregnancy as a contract also facilitates the legality of abortion for minors. A minor can not legally enter into a contract and therefore if she is pregnant no contract exists. Her having an abortion is a legal option, but not necessarily required.

Also, in the case of rape, no contract exists. A contract does not exist unless all parties entered into it freely. To the benefit of those in favor of abortion, the legal position that life begins at conception must also lead to the conclusion that unwanted pregnancy, by it's very nature, is trespass. However, though a landlord may evict a tenant in the cold of winter, he does not have a right to destroy the tenant.  Likewise if we accept the concept of unwanted or un-contracted for pregnancy as trespass then the fetus must, or at least should be provided a new "home". In a truly libertarian sense the newborn should be billed in order to recover the costs of his early life support.

These are just some of my ideas. If I haven't managed to offend you, somewhere in this article, then you are perhaps as strange as I am. Please e-mail me.

Pat Bratton