I generally avoid talking about politics on this blog, but I'm going to make an exception to that rule today.
Mississippi just voted down the "personhood" initiative, which defines human life as beginning once a female egg becomes fertilized.
On one hand I do agree that life begins at conception, and for that reason I consider abortion to be murder. That being said, I don't see the issue as all black and white, and I am glad that the initiative was defeated because it could have caused more problems than it solved.
For example, I remember a while ago there was discussion about a bill/initiative/whatever in some state (I don't remember where, so don't ask) that would make abortion illegal, but which would also make it necessary to launch a criminal investigation when a woman had a miscarriage. I could easily see the personhood initiative going in the same direction, and that is something that would do more harm than good to grieving would-be parents.
Also, there are certain extreme medical cases where I would actually support abortion. One example of where I support it is a case I learned about a few years ago when a girl who was scarcely old enough to be called a preteen became pregnant. (I want to say she was 9 years old, but I suspect I'm remembering wrong because that seems sort of impossible.) Even though she had entered puberty and was capable of conceiving a child, she was young enough that her body could not handle a pregnancy properly. I don't even know if she would have been capable of carrying a baby full term. She had an abortion, which I suspect (though I can't say for sure) saved her life. That is one case where I support the decision to have an abortion.
Another case is when a fetus grows in the fallopian tubes. There's no way that the baby can survive there, no way to save the life of the baby, but the mother's life can be saved if there is an abortion. I hate to say it, but I do support abortion in this case as well.
So even though I consider abortion to be murder I don't support laws which outlaw it completely, because it seems to me that in certain extreme cases it is necessary. And yet, how do we write a law that outlaws abortion, while still allowing it to be done in certain circumstances? It would be very tricky to write a law that would save the life of every viable fetus while still allowing women to save their own lives in cases such as those I have shared above. And I'm not sure how such a law could be written.
Maybe the best law on the topic of abortion would be that it is illegal, except in the case of where a mother's life would be in danger, and that whether an abortion is called for is up to a doctor. It would still be possible for a viable fetus to be aborted (I'm sure some doctors would wiggle their way around such a law to provide unnecessary abortions), but as I said I don't think there's a perfect way to write a law on abortion.
Don't even get me started about the argument that it's a woman's body and that she should be able to do with it as she pleases, because if you accept (as I do) that life begins at conception then there is not one life involved, but two. And as for the other argument often used that men don't have a right to say anything on the subject of abortion...um, it's their baby as much as it is the woman's, and as such I think they should definitely have a say in things.
Ok, I'm through. Let the arguments about my opinions begin! And since this is such a controversial subject I would like to note that although I'm fine with people disagreeing with me and arguing/debating, I can and will delete any personal attacks in the comments.