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Note-1: Due to the question being subjective and opinion based nature, as well as due to it is touching a controversial issue, I have voted to close my own question, with keeping the existing answers.

Note-2: Tl,Dr: This question is NOT about ethics behind abortion. This question is about personal boundary about who can express an opinion (counselling or otherwise) and who can not.

Note-3: The Pro-choice (NOT "pro-abort") position is the widely and internationally accepted standard behaviour and ethics. The author of this question declares that there should not be any debate around whether a lady has the ultimate power to decide whether she want to continue pregnancy or not - regardless of physiological or psychological reason, or no reason at all. There could be other biological and philosophical debates and agnosticism regarding whether the foetus has pain or not, or how much right a foetus is entitled to, nonetheless; these debates shall not surpass the body-autonomy of the pregnant lady.

Note 4: I shall not trim this question, as it would lead to loss of context, therefore would be misleading.

Note 5: No answer shall be marked as "accepted"; as all the answer are valid, and addresses the part of this intersectional problem. I wrote an answer from an objective perspective mentioning all the existing standpoints from a statistics/ census view, concluded it is not solvable, and accepted it to pin the answer to top.

Response to comment - Why this question relevant to philosophy? It is about ethics and who has the right to say about what. Rights is a philosophical concept. Freedom of speech a philosophical concept. "Nothing about us without us" is also a philosophical problem.

Before I start this question I make a few contextual information thing clear.
I am an Indian citizen, forever been in India.
I do not have knowledge of Western way of life, and many of the Western ideologies.
I am a practicing Hindu.
I am biological male (though I am not strictly masculine).

Main Question:

Until very recently, I did not knew there is an abortion debate in the West (as well as recently in India), only that I am aware of misogyny and domestic violence in India as well as a very high rate of sex-selective abortion ("female foeticide") or forced (non-consensual) abortion of female embryos, that take place due to patriarchial inheritance.

Recently I discovered in social media that a ton of people are staunchly at anger and anguish towards me; while I took lot of time to understand the underlying implications.

I wrote "baby" instead of "foetus". In my native language, a foetus is indeed called a baby in my native language, and it sounds more aesthetic to me. So in English comments I used the term "baby". Also I have used the term "pregnant mother" instead of "pregnant lady who is not yet mother". I had used the term "foeticide" once or twice. It eventually triggered a ton of people. They started to remind me about my gender and my limit to speak about these matter. They started to call me bigot and loose character etc.

Eventually, I discovered a lot of things over internet, social media and research papers; which I never knew.

In our family tradition or traditional Hindu teaching, it has been forever told to me that the embryos are live, not only that, they feel pain, they kick on the pregnant lady's womb. They can respond and communicate with the pregnant person. I was told also that according to Hinduism, the unborn babies stay in a state of dream. Where they actively perceives memories from the past life.

After these online clashes, I discovered something else. I learnt that, lot of people thinks that the Embryos are non-living chemical systems, or hardly comparable to a tumor. The embryos are "non-human".

Also I acknowledge that the social media users were not immoral, they were against any kind of child abuse or child murder; rather their point is, abortion should be done on demand and without much thinking process to take into account - because according to them, the Embryo is nonliving, and even if it was considered as living, then it does not have any kind of pain or other feeling. And to them, most definitely the embryo is "not human", so is not entitled to any kind of human rights.

The argument went at a fierce place where I was unable to get a comprehensive grasp on the evolving concepts. The group of social media users told me to go through hysterectomy, although I have not understood why. I am not married and I do not do sex. To my cultural belief, sex is not for enjoyment but a sacred practice for procreation which should not be practiced rampantly, and I have been taught that illegitimate and non-consensual sex always have bad consequences.

My stance was like, yes, allow abortion as and when the lady demands it (with proper privacy and dignity), but before that, give the lady some cooling off period, and some counselling. Discuss the pros and cons, the possibilities and future joy of having a new companion. In case the pregnancy harms in career or creates future financial uncertainty, then how the financial reasons can be resolved before taking such a big decision. How paid maternity leaves can be improved. How can the workplace provide more accommodation for a child. Provide some documentaries about how human embryo is biologically alive. Explore alternate options. As well discuss the pro side of abortion, including how it can be less-painful than carry a full term pregnancy.

And if still the lady is willing to terminate the pregnancy, do that respectfully. After all, I strongly support that human being should be able to change the mind from a commitment at any point of time.

Unfortunately, this argument was interpreted as manipulation and misinformation. It caused me severe confusion and distress. In our home or family, these kind of situation is conventionally handled with empathy and "maternal instinct". But according to the subset of social media users, it is all misinformation and bigotry, perhaps manipulation and Nazism.

My question is basically, why it is not justified for me to have a voice about another living being? If a lady is doing a tattoo or something on her own body that would not be a debate. But regarding a decision of someone else' body (although growing inside her own body, risking her own health, I acknowledge), why any attempt to counselling/ meaningful dialogue would be considered manipulative or abusive?

I can be totally wrong here. Please educate me in a gentle manner. I apologise for any kind of inadvertant mistake that can be seen as hurtful.

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8 Answers 8

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Abortion is very contentious, arousing all kinds of strong feelings. Some people believe that the unborn's life should trump the interests of the mother, while others believe the opposite. Some people disagree with abortion because it goes against their religion beliefs, while others argue that religious beliefs are irrational and should not be considered. Some people insist that only women should have a say in whether abortion should or shouldn't be allowed, while others insist it is up to society generally to decide. And so on and so on. You are as entitled as anyone else to speak your mind on the topic, but don't be surprised if you get a hostile response, since it is a very emotive and polarised subject.

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  • Comments have been moved to chat; please do not continue the discussion here. Before posting a comment below this one, please review the purposes of comments. Comments that do not request clarification or suggest improvements usually belong as an answer, on Philosophy Meta, or in Philosophy Chat. Comments continuing discussion may be removed.
    – Geoffrey Thomas
    Mar 6 at 20:05
  • This answer seems to be about points of view on abortion, which doesn't address the question.
    – James K
    Mar 6 at 20:24
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    @JamesK different users helped adding contextual information which although does not answer the question directly, yet definitely help clearing up confusions regarding the complex problem.
    – user72899
    Mar 6 at 21:03
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    @JamesK the questioner asked whether he had the right to express his views about abortion. I answered that he did, but should expect to get a hostile response, and I explained why he should expect that. Why is that not addressing the question? Mar 6 at 21:30
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"give the lady some cooling off period, and some counselling"

I get the good intention behind this, but in practice, these things tend to exist exclusively to try to convince a woman that she's making the wrong decision about her body (and this relies heavily on emotional manipulation and often explicit lies). In the US, even prior to Roe v Wade being overturned (meaning when states couldn't make abortions illegal), there have been clinics who don't provide abortions at all and who vehemently oppose them, trying to trick women into thinking they can provide abortions and that they'd receiving unbiased counselling. And now it may also be used to try to get women past some cutoff after which abortions are no longer legal.

Also, it is every doctor's responsibility, in every medical treatment, for every condition, for a doctor to appropriately counsel the patient, to make sure the patient is thinking clearly about the decision, etc.

What this counselling should look like should be a medical decision, not a legal one. Doctors should consider the mental and physical health of the patient and how impactful a decision (or a lack of a decision) is. That is to say: medical boards could set expectations or requirements for counselling doctors should do, and hold doctors accountable. But we shouldn't set those expectations via the law. That would just create scenarios where doctors are explicitly required to do something they know will cause harm, based on their expert knowledge, and which isn't the recommended medical treatment, but they're doing it only because they're legally required to. An explicit threat of legal consequences if a doctor doesn't lean heavily enough towards one decision above the other (i.e. refusing to perform an abortion) - that creates a strong bias that pushes someone away from what their medical expertise says.

Many doctors would just turn women away instead of getting into a legal minefield or instead of being required to do something unethical. No-one wants to risk ending up in prison (or even "just" accused of a crime) for doing their job to the best of their ability.

"the possibilities and future joy of having a new companion"

If you need to convince a woman to give birth that actually they'd be happy with a child, I'd say you probably failed both the woman and the child.

Plenty of people never want children, and plenty of people are deeply unhappy as parents. And while most of those would probably try their best if forced or manipulated into the situation, there are a few cases where this leads to children being neglected or abused. And even someone trying their best only has so much to offer, and expecting someone to commit every single day to something they don't want at all and never wanted - that's expecting a lot.

You can't just one day decide you've had enough of this whole parenthood thing and just stop being a parent. A child is a human being that needs to be cared for, that you'll be responsible for, and it's not a responsibility we should accept lightly.

If we want to say that the decision to have an abortion shouldn't be taken lightly, then the decision to have a child should come with exponentially more consideration.

"In case the pregnancy harms in career or creates future financial uncertainty"
"How paid maternity leaves can be improved"
"How can the workplace provide more accommodation for a child"

These may factor into why some women don't want children. But talking to them about how the law and workplaces could ideally provide more accommodation doesn't solve their present financial problems.

If you want women to have children in those cases, push for laws that would provide the financial assistance they'd need.

But most anti-abortion people are also against such laws, and they typically want to decrease existing welfare, medical aid, and financial aid. This contributes to the argument some make that most anti-abortion people don't actually care about women, nor about children. What they care about is sticking with their belief that abortion is immoral (or they just care about controlling women's bodies).

"Provide some documentaries about how human embryo is biologically alive."

Early-stage fetuses (when most abortion happen) have the functional capabilities of someone who's legally and medically considered to be dead.

The most important capability there is brain capability and the capacity for consciousness, and that shows up some time after 20 weeks (at which point you only really see medically necessary abortions from women who actually want the baby).

"Biologically alive" is fairly meaningless. Cancer is "biologically alive".

"As well discuss the pro side of abortion, including how it can be less-painful than carry a full term pregnancy"

... and there a much lower risk of permanent damage to one's body, there a much lower risk of death, it's much, much cheaper, you wouldn't have to potentially adopt the significant time investment and go through the severe emotional labour of caring for a child you don't want almost every single day for decades, you wouldn't have to carry around and care for a living reminder of sexual assault (in case that happened), and that's just off the top of my head.

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  • Comments have been moved to chat; please do not continue the discussion here. Before posting a comment below this one, please review the purposes of comments. Comments that do not request clarification or suggest improvements usually belong as an answer, on Philosophy Meta, or in Philosophy Chat. Comments continuing discussion may be removed.
    – Geoffrey Thomas
    Mar 6 at 20:04
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    @JamesK Please note that since I am not very much informed about this topic, it is very much important for the answerer to add details and context.
    – user72899
    Mar 6 at 20:58
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    @JamesK OP asks why them sharing their opinions related to abortion is "not justified" or is "considered manipulative or abusive", which I tried to provide some insight into in this answer (although I merely pointed out some problems I see with what was said, without judgement of the intentions of OP). I directly quoted various parts of what OP said, and responded to those quotes to make that case. I'm not sure why you think this answer is not addressing what the question is "about". (Note: The note saying "This question is NOT about ethics behind abortion" was added after I wrote this answer)
    – NotThatGuy
    Mar 7 at 8:15
  • @NotThatGuy Do not worry, you factually and literally addressed my question in the very first paragraph in the answer. Whether the counselling ideally should be provided, and as of now what does the counselling practically says about. Regardless of this view is accurate or inaccurate, I must acknowledge it is a direct question to my answer.
    – user72899
    Mar 7 at 12:08
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In this answer, I try to explain to OP why he got stiff feedback from social media; I am trying my utmost not to take a stand on the issue of abortion. If you feel that I write something about abortion that you cannot live with, please just give me a comment which part is totally unacceptable, and I may try to fix it. Abortion is not the main point of this answer. Please do note that I try to represent both major viewpoints - I am not giving any value judgement but describing what I am seeing in the world.

You are mixing three very difficult topics in todays (especially Western) society:

  • Social media
  • Abortion
  • "Ideologism" in general (that is not a word but not being a native speaker I don't find the correct one; I'll explain later)

First of all: our current society is currently experiencing growing pains regarding social media. Many people use social media in an everyday manner, and many aspects of it are difficult:

  • Emotions are not transported easily.
  • The length of messages is often short, not only because of arbitrary .limits, but because people often do not have the time to write much - they just send a quick blurb without thinking all too much.
  • They are for the most part incognito; and not being able to be held accountable often leads to aggression. (N.B. you also find research that shows some positive aspects of anonymity, feel free to search more about this yourself).
  • The algorithms of the platforms lead to filter bubbles; i.e. people tend to be served content which aligns with what they think; and often they get served content specifically which makes them angry - simply because that leads to more clicks. By far not all consumers know about these things, or are able to block them mentally.
  • ... you get the picture; it's just hard for most people.

Unless you are a person who thinks long and hard about what the things you are writing will do to other people, it is very easy to fall into the trap of "spamming" your social media posts, and do it in a very quick and reflective manner - you see something, you get "triggered", you post. The next person does the same, and voilá you have your social outrage.

Second of all, abortion: depending on country/culture/region, you have the two camps. The one camp says that the fetus is to be treated like a complete human being from the very moment of conception (or very shortly after); the other camp says that especially the woman has a right over her own body, and that abortion is acceptable until some variable point in the development of the fetus/baby-to-be.

Both of these dimensions (the rights of the fetus, and the rights of the mother) have a significant meaning; and in both cases there can be very difficult circumstances (for example rape or hereditary diseases) which make it very hard to get to a universally accepted solution. There may well not be one. Life is often messy.

Thirdly, the aspect of the ideology of the people fighting about these topics. Often it is not even strictly about abortion per se, but about ideologies shifted slightly off that topic. For example, one ideology might say "everybody is free to do whatever they want (especially with their own body) unless they hurt someone else". And then the question is at which point the entity developing in the womb becomes "someone else". Do you arbitrarily decide that the zygote already is "someone else"? Or the embryo? Maybe the fetus at the arbitrarily defined stage of something around 9 weeks in? When it is 30mm in size? Some people are certain that at this point there is no thinking or feeling entity there yet. Some other people still count this construct as something to protect.

In some stage of the development, the embryo famously resembles the spawn of frogs or fish, being a very, very undeveloped clump of cells. If we say that an actual tadpole has neither feelings nor a soul, why would the embryo have such? You see, it is very hard to discuss these things.

The other ideology says that "from the moment of conception (or some arbitrary stage of development), the entity is to be protected at all costs, even risking the very life of the mother." You can of course say that - but it is obvious how there would be cases where a mother, whose life we're just randomly throwing away, might not be quite happy about that. Yes, there are cases where it is 80% or more clear that the mother will either die or at the very least be damaged for the rest of her life. It is not clear that forcing them to accept that - may be if they were raped in the first place, is the morally correct thing to do. Often it is absolutely plain and clear that the mother will not be able to support her child after birth, and the society will not have a social net to care for the child either - it is very unclear that this is morally a good thing to do.

Now the thing about ideologies is that they not up for discussion. It is usually impossible or exceedingly hard to change ideologies in others (or even yourself). A person who believes the one will never, ever, ever be changed to truly believe the other. And often not even to accept it. People who yell for "freedom" all the time will happily deny any kind of freedom to the adherents of the "other" ideology. Ideologies are as close to fundamental religions as you can get. There is research on why that may be, if you wish to find some further reading.

My question is basically, why it is not justified for me to have a voice about another living being? If a lady is doing a tattoo or something on her own body that would not be a debate. But regarding a decision of someone else' body (although growing inside her own body, risking her own health, I acknowledge), why any attempt to counselling/ meaningful dialogue would be considered manipulative or abusive?

Ah, this is yet another point of human nature: very few people indeed are open to uncalled-for suggestions. No matter how well you are meaning (and this goes not only for this very difficult topic). Unless someone asks for help or your opinion on something related to them, people on average do no take such input in a good way. Exceptions of course exist, and we note them as being especially pleasant people to be around with, but you can never expect it.

So TLDR: you selected an extremely difficult, basically unsolvable and highly emotional topic. Then you discussed it in a medium which makes it basically impossible to really understand the other person (especially whether they mean good or evil). And all of this was highly related to ideologies that are currently running rampant in the west (on both sides of the coin). Nothing good can ever come from that.

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    Thank you for reading through the whole situation and providing an extremely insightful analysis from an objectivist standpoint
    – user72899
    Mar 5 at 16:16
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    Note that it's possible to unite the two camps: a foetus is a complete human being, but one that is effectively keeping another human (the woman carrying the foetus) in slavery. If we hold that no person is entitled to the body of another person, then we can accept foetal personhood but still allow abortion until the baby is viable outside the womb. "Unless they hurt someone else" goes both ways.
    – gerrit
    Mar 5 at 21:56
  • 1
    The only reasonable attempt at explaining WHY early-stage fetuses should have rights, that I've heard, is they have souls (which leads to a discussion of whether it's reasonable to believe souls exist or some religion is true). There has also been some less reasonable attempts. But simply asserting that fetuses should have rights doesn't explain why, and when someone doesn't offer a justification for their position, they aren't taking part in the debate (even if they pretend to).
    – NotThatGuy
    Mar 6 at 6:35
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    @NotThatGuy: Having a “soul” isn't a necessary condition for being “a human being” or “a person”, with the ethical and legal implications thereof. There are people who believe in “rights” without believing in “souls”.
    – dan04
    Mar 6 at 19:47
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    @dan04 "Having a 'soul' isn't a necessary condition for being 'a human being'" - I didn't say it is, I'm just saying I haven't heard any compelling argument for why early-stage fetuses should have rights that doesn't rely on a "soul". (See my comment above for why I think people should have "rights", which doesn't involve a "soul", but also seems to better support bodily autonomy of women rather than fetal rights).
    – NotThatGuy
    Mar 7 at 8:01
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First time on the internet?

Seriously though; there's a lot here and with abortion in general. There are a lot of really bad arguments, on both sides.

I'll try to address at least some. Hopefully it's somewhat useful.

Firstly using words like "baby" instead of "fetus" can be seen as a dirty debate tactic, it's morally loaded language, or maybe a kind of intuition pump. Which may aim at leading the listener to a conclusion. "Baby" includes like a 1 year old, so of course one would never kill a baby, so using this kind of language is kind of putting the carrot before the horse. A popular argument, which you've alluded to with "non-living" or "non-human", is more accurately described as "non-person". A decent argument revolves around if and when a being becomes a person and is thus granted these rights. So calling it a baby can be seen as kind of circumventing that whole debate, which may be why people get upset when you do that.

Anyone who dismisses an opinion based on your gender or experience is just sexist and operating in bad faith (a lot of what you say leads me to the conclusion they are probably bad faith), so you probably don't need to worry too much about this. I've never murdered or been murdered, so can I not say murder is bad? Obviously a ridiculous stance. Same goes with ad homs; they aren't intellectually capable of having a discussion on the topic so they just resort to these kinds of pathetic attacks. Again don't pay heed to these kinds of people. They can't or don't want to discuss the topic.

Your stance is not even that extreme, you are perfectly entitled to it, and people are perfectly entitled to debate you on it. These people just seem bad faith. I wouldn't worry too much about it. This topic (but really any online debate) can easily get people fired up and has a lot of people debating in bad faith.

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    "Anyone who dismisses an opinion based on your gender or experience is just sexist" - sometimes, sure. But not always. Not having the relevant life experiences factually-speaking limits your ability to have a full understanding of the relevant factors. Even someone with those experiences may still not have a full understanding, because e.g. someone who desperately wants children will most likely feel different about abortion than someone who never ever wants children. That doesn't mean someone shouldn't be allowed to talk about it, but they should keep the limits of their understanding in mind
    – NotThatGuy
    Mar 6 at 6:07
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    I'd say concluding that someone is operating in bad faith should have a rather high burden of proof, because it's unfalsifiable, and it may (subconsciously) bias you to dismiss what may actually be valid arguments and valid criticism, and it may prevent you from empathising with their posiition.
    – NotThatGuy
    Mar 6 at 6:12
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    I did say probably, and yeh its just based on a one sided telling of events, but if all the things op mentioned are true (and coming from one person) I do think its very very likely. and sure you can dismiss someone's opinion if they don't have an understanding, but like you mentioned; having an understanding and having the relevant experience are not the same thing. sure it's more likely that a person who has had an experience will have a higher chance of understanding more or deeper. but it's not always the case and again you'd attack the understanding not the "credentials"
    – Aequitas
    Mar 6 at 6:52
  • "you'd attack the understanding not the credentials" - that is generally a good strategy, although we should keep in mind that, for example, a man* doesn't and can't know what it feels like to be pregnant (much less being pregnant with a baby they don't want). So while a man can generally speak about the limits of human freedoms and the rights of a fetus, they'd be more limited in their ability to make an argument that relies on pregnancy not actually being so bad. They'd also be emotionally disconnected from the concrete health risks of pregnancy, but they could rationally understand it.
    – NotThatGuy
    Mar 6 at 7:27
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    Of course, you could make the inverse argument that being emotionally disconnected from a situation makes a person's opinion "more objective" and less self-interested. That's why lawyers and therapists are generally discouraged from having their own family members as clients.
    – dan04
    Mar 6 at 19:53
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Communication never takes place in a vacuum. There's always a necessary context, and that impacts what words and expressions are understood to mean. In the age of the global internet, people are quite often communicating across cultural lines, which multiplies the opportunities for misunderstandings or miscommunications. In this case, in the United States, in the current moment, abortion is the subject of several overlapping controversies:

  • Moral: "Is abortion a moral crime?"
  • Political: "Which party's position on abortion do you agree with?"
  • Autonomy: "What are a person's rights over their own body (and should those have limits)?"
  • Legal: "Should abortion be legal?"
  • Cultural: "Who should be able to speak on the topic of abortion?"
  • Scientific: "When does life begin, scientifically speaking?"
  • Religious: "When does life begin, religiously speaking?"

In addition, while this has been a live debate in the United States for decades, recent events make it a particularly current and volatile conversation. In particular, it marks ground zero of a "culture war" between two opposed, polarized groups. Because of this, most people in the United States either avoid opining on the topic entirely, or make a deliberate statement in the full knowledge that it will be interpreted as a statement of allegiance to one or the other of the two sides, and will draw the wrath of partisans on the other side. (Attempted midground positions tend to draw the wrath of both sides.)

In this case, you were viewed, perhaps justifiably, as making statements on a topic you were not qualified to fully understand. As an analogy, imagine an uninformed American wading, unprepared, into some topic of live, volatile, current controversy in Indian cultural life. They might be challenged not just because of their opinions, but also because of their lack of context.

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My question is basically, why it is not justified for me to have a voice about another living being?

When opinions are divided and the topic is considered a "hot" topic, this generally means that there is active disapproval for people whose opinions differ. When you have an opinion (no matter what it is) and communicate it, you're always going to garner pushback from whoever has a differenet opinion, most notable the ones on the other side of the fence (for two-sided issues such as abortion).

Social media has a way of reaching a wide audience and therefore you are statistically very likely to hear back from people who disagree with you, no matter what your opinion is.

Your position and question is interesting, because your initial introduction as to what you believe, which I am going to massively oversimplify into "all embryos/fetuses are people", is different from your conclusion, which I'm going to massively oversimplify into "women are allowed to choose to have an abortion".

Given the way social media works, this nuanced position actually works against you, as both sides of the debate can find something to disagree about in your explanation, thus garnering more negative feedback than you would if your opinion was on one specific extreme end of the spectrum (because then you'd only draw the ire from the other side of the fence, instead of both sides).

Before I dissect your opinion, the core answer here is that social media has a tendency to focus on disagreement. The core question of

Should I not say anything about this topic?

is an overgeneralization. I would offer that a more accurate response could be:

Since I don't like this kind of response, should I not say anything about this topic on social media?

You have a nuanced opinion, and online discourse has a habit of "black and white" thinking, which often ignores or actively disagree with nuance. If you don't like that, then you might be better served not engaging in this discussion via social media platforms.

But you weren't wrong to voice your opinion. Everyone is allowed to voice their opinion. And at the same time, everyone is allowed to (vocally) agree or disagree with your opinion.

I'm going to pick at some things you said here and specifically argue against them, so you can maybe understand where people are coming from. Please remember that I'm intentionally arguing against every individual point, and it might seem that I'm changing my own opinion, but I'm actually trying to represent different people's ways of thinking about this issue.

Everything below this line is argumentative, opinionated, and intentionally looking at things from a different perspective than you. I try to give you objective facts, but I cannot be fully unbiased here, plus sometimes I have to deal with what people think is true, rather than what is objectively true.

I am a practicing Hindu.

In our family tradition or traditional Hindu teaching,

You will find that the pro-choice camp is predominantly pro-science, and in the Western world the religious camp is often at odds with the scientific camp. Any mention of religious believe is very likely to draw the ire of those whose abortion arguments are scientific in nature.

I am biological male (though I am not strictly masculine)

They started to remind me about my gender and my limit to speak about these matter

Whether correct or not, there is some discourse coming from the pro-choice camp that the pro-life camp has a very male-dominated leadership, leading to a general "men are deciding what women should experience" negative observation. This sometimes leads to people judging men's opinions on abortion as less relevant than women's opinions.

The above is a misguided response, in my personal opinion, but it's an understandable response to often hearing misguided male-dominated discourse on the subject.

foeticide

Abortion is a charged topic with a lot of strong emotions on both sides. You're using a very correct but cold and blunt word that literally means "killing foetuses". This is going to rub people the wrong way.

In their own way, for their own reasons, both camps advocate for no killing. Either by advocating against abortion because they think abortion is killing, or by pointing out that abortion is not killing. Therefore, calling it killing without at the same time advocating against it, is something that both camps can find disagreement with.

From a very cold perspective, your word usage is correct, but it's touching on a very sensitive topic.

I wrote "baby" instead of "foetus". In my native language, a foetus is indeed called a baby in my native language, and it sounds more aesthetic to me. So in English comments I used the term "baby".

The pro-choice camp very often distinguishes babies from embryos and fetuses, specifically to distinguish conscious life from what they consider to be the preamble to life (i.e. not alive yet, just on its way to becoming life.

Think of it this way: a tomato seed is not a tomato. But that seed can one day turn into a tomato. Somewhere along the timeline, inbetween "this is clearly a seed" and "this is clearly a tomato", there is a change where it goes from being one to being another.

Words like "zygote", "embryo", "fetus", "baby" are specific labels for specific stages on that timeline. Different camps use these labels differently. The pro-life camp overapplies (according to the pro-choice camp) the word "baby" from the very beginning, in an attempt to imply that "if it's a baby, it should not be aborted".

You're overapplying the word "baby" in the same sense, but without the implication that therefore abortion should be banned. However, your use of the word "baby" alone is going to make people assume that you're using the word specifically to imply "immoral to abort at this stage", which is going to draw negative responses from the pro-choice camp.

the embryos are live, not only that, they feel pain, they kick on the pregnant lady's womb

People who distinguish an "embryo" from a "baby" will very much disagree with you that an embryo can kick on a lady's womb (it would be a fetus at the stage where it is able to kick).

They can respond and communicate with the pregnant person.

You will find that certain people very much will disagree with that statement and instead suggest that muscle spasms/twitches are not proof of conscious life.

I was told also that according to Hinduism, the unborn babies stay in a state of dream.

Your religious argument will often be ignored, especially by the pro-choice camp who will point at an MRI of brain activity rather than your belief in dreaming states.

I learnt that, lot of people thinks that the Embryos are non-living chemical systems, or hardly comparable to a tumor. The embryos are "non-human".

Slightly more accurate, "embryo" is used to label a preamble to what is considered to be "life", in the sense that an embryo is not conscious. The comparison to a tumor is often made as an oversimplification of "cells without an attached conscious existence", it's not literally thought of as a tumor.

And to them, most definitely the embryo is "not human", so is not entitled to any kind of human rights.

This is an oversimplification of the point, which is likely going to draw pushback from people who hold this opinion. "Rights" are very specific concepts but "human rights" is a very vague concept. Almost every "human right" that you put forward, we can find a counterexample. Right to life? Death penalty exists. Right to housing? Homeless people are not adequately housed. Right to food? Plenty of poor people go hungry.

The pro-choice camp will point out that the pro-life camp is not all that occupied with the humans rights of people who have been born, and will therefore question how genuine their concern is for the human rights of the unborn, as opposed to it being a disingenuous argument made only to win the debate.

rather their point is, abortion should be done on demand and without much thinking process to take into account

The pro-choice camp is not so much saying that there shouldn't be a thinking process, but rather that the government should not stipulate what that thinking process should be; instead letting people come to their own decision in their own way without needing to get the government's approval (if approval is even possible, which the pro-life camp generally doesn't agree with).

The group of social media users told me to go through hysterectomy, although I have not understood why.

Telling a man to go through a procedure specifically for women is effectively saying "you don't know what women go through".

sex is not for enjoyment but a sacred practice for procreation which should not be practiced rampantly

This belief is very common in the pro-life camp.

My stance was like, yes, allow abortion as and when the lady demands it (with proper privacy and dignity)

This is the pro-choice stance, and pro-lifers disagree with this at its very core.

For Westerners, this is a turning point in your apparent stance on the issue. First you argue that all babies are human and alive; but then you still consider the choice of abortion valid. I'm not judging your opinion, I'm pointing out that you use arguments from both camps and this will confuse people who are used to dealing with people who pick one side's arguments and not the other.

but before that, give the lady some cooling off period [..] Explore alternate options.

I just want to point out here that the pro-life camp is accused of setting up clinics which uses these tactics disingenuously to simply let the pregnancy run longer than it otherwise would have, therefore crossing the threshold into a pregnancy that no longer can be terminated purely because the woman wants it to be terminated.

I'm pointing this out to help you understand why pro-choice people will sometimes balk at the idea of cooling down periods as they may sometimes be used as stalling tactics instead.

After all, I strongly support that human being should be able to change the mind from a commitment at any point of time.

This is a nitpick, but others will argue against it just for the sake of arguing: any time? Surely you mean before birth?

Unfortunately, this argument was interpreted as manipulation and misinformation.

Both sides accuse each other of doing so. Once you offer an opinion, anyone who disagrees will accuse you of doing so. That's just how that particular topic is discussed. I don't like it and I doubt you do, but that's just what it is right now in a lot of conversations on this topic.

these kind of situation is conventionally handled with empathy and "maternal instinct".

Social media has a way of removing people from true empathy, because we are all strangers on the internet who have no long term connection to the person we're talking to. This removes the social connection that usually limits people (in real life) to be reasonable with one another.

why any attempt to counselling/ meaningful dialogue would be considered manipulative or abusive?

Because counseling leads to compromise, and compromise leads to you not fully getting what you want. People on the extreme end of the spectrum (on both sides) are not interested in compromise.

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    Thank you for your response
    – user72899
    Mar 7 at 8:35
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    This is a good answer. But like you, "I'm going to massively oversimplify" - everyone is subject to black and white thinking, so it is pretty inescapable. And the point that a tomato seed changes in to a tomato is basically a Ship of Theseus issue, which as best I know, has no solution. Therefore, I predict that issues like this one will never be resolved. I would like to be wrong about that :-)
    – Scott Rowe
    Mar 7 at 22:08
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    @ScottRowe: I distinguish the Ship of Theseus from the seed-to-plant example but you are correct that in terms of "people disagree on where to draw the line" it's pretty much equivalent.
    – Flater
    Mar 7 at 22:29
0

With acknowledging subjectivity and controversy regarding the matter, PEW research centre published a very detailed statistic that seem to cover all of my questions.

1. There are large section of people who believes both in life/personhood of the foetus and still advocate for autonomy of the pregnant lady in abortion decisions.

l

  1. General consensus is women have more say.

enter image description here

  1. Most democrats view that pregnant person's sole say on abortion decision.

enter image description here

Conclusion:

  1. Valid and multidimensional view to these questions exist, with conflicting perception for each other. Each school of thought has a good share of followers who accept their position to be passionately true.

  2. There can't be one single correct or final answer. Firstly we are agnostic of wether a fetus feels pain and/or has soul and/or has personhood; and even if someday they are proven to be true or false; still there could be subjective debates. Especially regarding rights and decisions.

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    You only included democrats in two of your three tables, and the fact you used this to answer your own question indicates your approach was biased from the start, as you’re only admitting information from one side. You also mentioned abortion is a settled issue in multiple comments. Even this biased data and what you note here contradicts that. Mar 7 at 16:24
  • @JustSomeOldMan Thank you for your valuable input
    – user72899
    Mar 7 at 17:08
  • @JustSomeOldMan I would be very happy if you write an answer.
    – user72899
    Mar 7 at 17:09
  • @JustSomeOldMan I copy pasted the pictures from Pew research centre. What can I do if they highlight the democratic opinion explicitly? I do not have enough energy left to edit those screen shots.
    – user72899
    Mar 7 at 17:11
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    Kindly, you seem to be so concerned about offending people and about other people’s opinions of you that I don’t think you’re thinking clearly or using reason to come to your own conclusions. It seems you’re being emotionally pressured into a position. I suggest you read high-quality arguments with no emotional manipulation or rhetoric from both sides and come to your own conclusion using reason. I also think you have to learn to be content with the possibility that there is no ultimate or objective answer. It may be a matter of taste. Mar 7 at 18:41
-1

You made some very unfortunate word choices.

Killing a baby is one of the worst possible crimes imaginable in the western world. By calling a foetus “baby” you basically say that abortion is one of the worst possible crimes. That would put you politically at the extreme right end of the extreme right end of the worst right wing political party.

Similar with the word “foeticide”. “…icide” is used for murder. That’s the word you would use if someone took a knife and stabbed a pregnant woman, killing the fetus. It’s just about the same as the first. All really bad luck if you don’t know the language well enough.

Now in Europe abortion is more or less accepted with the exception of Ireland (with a long tradition of forcing women to have babies against their will and handing them to nuns who just love to punish little children for the sins of their mothers). In the USA things are different.

The Republicans are very much against abortions, making it illegal where they can. Now this is not to prevent abortions. They are also very much against all kinds of birth control (pregnancy prevention), they are also very much against helping women or children who avoided an abortion. The moment the Fetus turns into a baby, mother and baby are on their own. The only reasonable explanation is that they love using their power against the weakest members of society.

From your question: “ Discuss the pros and cons, the possibilities and future joy of having a new companion. In case the pregnancy harms in career or creates future financial uncertainty, then how the financial reasons can be resolved before taking such a big decision. ”

For many women there is no “financial uncertainty”. There is in the USA often complete certainty that bringing a child into this world would be a complete financial disaster. And the financial reasons could be resolved but the men in power who do everything to prevent abortions will also do everything to prevent financial help being given to women. And this is not even mentioning rape victims who will forever be reminded of the rape. When you have an ex-president with the motto “grab them by the p***y” that can only be expected.

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    "icide" is not used for murder, homocide for example is just causing the death of someone else, it can be accidental or intentional. Foeticide should be a correct word here to reference abortion, though abortion probably is a better word. I've seen people use "infanticide", that one is morally loaded for sure.
    – Aequitas
    Mar 6 at 4:23
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    @Aequitas You could argue that "foeticide" is technically correct, but using it could certainly be said to try to evoke emotion by associating it with homicide, genocide, suicide, etc. That is, to suggest that a fetus is living thing (person) and you're killing it, which is what much of the debate is about. "Infanticide" is arguably just factually incorrect (more so than calling a fetus a "baby"), because an infant is commonly specifically defined as post-birth, e.g. the CDC defines it as 0-1 years.
    – NotThatGuy
    Mar 6 at 6:47
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    @CitizenandSociety also, another reason that made people to be so virulent against you, I think, is that you come off as naive (no offense) about the issue. With social media, and this issue in particular, being so western-centric, I think most people would assume any inaccuracies or mistakes on your part would come from a place of bad faith, when it's more likely caused by cultural differences.
    – user3399
    Mar 6 at 7:43
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    @NotThatGuy a fetus is inarguably a living thing and abortion would be killing it. The debate (for part (I think a fairly low %) of the pro-abortion side) is that it's not a "person" (or doesn't have "personhood" status), very different to "living thing". Personally I think it's not really emotionally loaded, no more than insecticide or spermicide. But I guess I can concede that others may, especially since I think a lot of people (incorrectly) think homocide is synonymous with murder. perhaps cultural diff. I agree infanticide is incorrect and definitely just trying to invoke emotion.
    – Aequitas
    Mar 6 at 9:28
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    @Aequitas Cancer cells are also "living things", but you'd get a lot of funny looks if you try to describe cancer treatment as "cell-icide". On a related note, self-defence isn't typically colloquially described as homicide (even though it technically falls within the legal definition of justifiable homicide). If a layperson phrases self-defence as "committing homicide against an uninvited visitor", that certain sounds like an attempt to appeal to emotion (although I'd admit that "defending one's home and life from an intruder" is also an emotional appeal, albeit more accurate and justified).
    – NotThatGuy
    Mar 6 at 9:41