1) It should be noted that a person’s right over his or her own body is not absolute. Examples where the government and other entities step in are prostitution, illegal drug abuse, the desire to have sex with a child, ect.
2) The fetus is technically not part of the woman’s body (I‘m calling it a fetus and using the pronoun it for the sake of argument. It‘s a baby). It is a genetically distinct entity with its own genetic code, and early on in the pregnancy it has its own heart and circulatory system. To say it’s part of the woman’s body so she can do whatever she pleases with it confuses the fetus being attached to the woman carrying it and being a part of the woman carrying it. It does not follow that just because the fetus is attached to its mother by an umbilical cord that the fetus is a part of her in a way that denies its own separate identity. Furthermore, one might argue that the fetus could never survive on its own without the mother’s body. So what? We do not decide whether someone is a person based upon their ability to survive on their own. Someone who is in a vegetative state cannot survive on their own without human care and sometimes the use of machines. Are we to conclude that they’re not persons? Another pertinent example would be twins who are bodily conjoined. Occasionally, A conjoined twin couldn’t survive on its own if they were to be detached from each other but no one thinks we should let one half of the twins decide the fate of the other.
3) The argument that a woman has the right to do with her body whatever she so desires precludes the idea that the fetus is a person. If it’s a person, the whole right to do whatever she desires topples to another person’s right to life. Only if personhood is rejected can the right to do whatever with her body stand under scrutiny. One person’s rights end where another’s begins. Furthermore, if the issue is really about the limitation of one’s ultimate freedom and it can be shown that what is inside the womb is a person or even probably a person, than by all means, extend the same exercise of freedom to him or her!
4) The argument negates any fatherly wants or wishes. The father apparently has no say so as long as the “piece of flesh” is in the womb yet is fully responsible for supplying child support for the fetus after it is born. Until women can have children without the sperm from a man, it seems like the man should have some rights within this decision.
Even if it is vague to some people whether or not the fetus is a person or at what moment the fetus receives personhood, the ambiguity in no way should lead to the act of abortion. If there is a chance that there is personhood and humanity values life (all do or at least should), then the conservative choice of carrying the child is the most logical and moral. Ronald Reagan once said in a news conference that “If we don’t know, then shouldn’t we morally opt on the side of life? If you came upon an immobile body and you yourself could not determine whether it was dead or alive, I think that you would decide to consider it alive until somebody could prove it was dead. You wouldn’t get a shovel and start covering it up. And I think we should do the same thing with regard to abortion.” The ambiguity of murder being wrong is far less than the ambiguity of whether or not the fetus is a person. It makes the most sense to do the moral thing if there’s a chance one is committing murder. And, to be quite frank, the law unfortunately does not determine what is moral or immoral. The fact that our current justice system says it’s not immoral has no bearing and shows that whole systems can be flawed.