• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Human rights - abortion.

Extracts from this document...


Luke Marsh - Human Rights Essay (Abortion) The right to abortion has been recognised in the USA since 1973, following the Supreme Court decision of Roe v Wade. The decision was seven judges to two, so was a clear majority. Despite this it is still a very controversial decision that is continually facing attack, even now on its 30th anniversary. In this case the Supreme Court held that it was unconstitutional to deprive the woman of a right to an abortion in the first trimester of pregnancy, in most instances in the second trimester and for some reasons in the third trimester. The decision in this case was based on the Constitutional right to Privacy implied by Amendment 14 of the US Constitution. The Court made it clear that their decision as to the right to privacy only extended to privacy in the sense of personal sovereignty.1 This is important because if the argument that because of privacy abortion is not the State's business, the result could have been extended, in manners that even the pro-choice lobby would not have liked. A fuller privacy would have suggested that sex in all its forms and results was private, the State then would not be able to provide protection for women from being raped or mauled in private environments. ...read more.


The foetus on the other hand may have a right to life under article 2 but only if they can be considered a person. There have been four major cases in the European Court of Human Rights. The first is the Open Door and Dublin Well Woman v Ireland in 1992, Paton v UK in 1980, Boso v Italy in 2002 and Takrczyk v Poland also in 2002. Dublin Well Woman case was mainly concerned with the right to access information on abortion in Ireland, where abortion was illegal. Therefore there is little article 2 or 8 debate in these cases. Similarly Takrczyk does not discuss article 2 or 8 in depth as it is more concerned with helping woman leave Poland to have abortions, then the right to abortions in Poland. In the more relevant cases the Court held that article 2 includes two fundamental aspects; the right to life and the prohibition of intentional killing. The court in Paton noted there was no definition of 'everyone' which is used in the right to life in article 2 but that the use of the word meant that it could only really apply post-natally, so did not include the unborn. In Boso the court was not this strict. ...read more.


The provision that is easiest to satisfy, s1(1)(a) has a time limit, which prevents its use after 24 weeks and the other provisions have requirements that are more serious and harder to meet, despite lacking time periods. As a result other implied protections of the woman over the foetus would be likely to protect these provisions as well. So the European Convention on Human Rights is unlikely to interfere or lead to a change in Abortion law in the England. Of course the application to Northern Ireland may be affected, especially if the health of a woman is superior to the right to life of a foetus in the future, in this case the right to abortions in more extended circumstances then present may need to be recognised. If the same Human Rights approach was taken in the US, there would be problems with abortion on demand for the first trimester, but the Supreme Courts ruling on second and third trimester State restrictions would be able to stand, as the English law would. 1 Dworkin, Life's Dominion (???) pg52. 2 L Tribe, Abortion and the Clash of Absolutes (Norton & Company, New York) 1992, pg13 3 L Tribe, Abortion and the Clash of Absolutes (Norton & Company, New York) 1992, pg11 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Abortion and other medical issues section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Abortion and other medical issues essays

  1. Beloved - Summary of major characters

    But Denver's hearing also returned because of the sound of the ghost baby, possibly indicating that the answer to the pain of the past may lie in confronting it rather than avoiding it. Part One, Chapter 10 Summary: After failing to escape from Sweet Home, Paul D was sold to a new master, whom he tried to kill.

  2. Is the law on abortion in this country in a satisfactory state at present?

    Morgan notes that if 'foetal handicapped' ground is to be construed in terms or 'parental interest' then it is superfluous and unnecessary to repeat the provisions in S1 (1)(c) 'women's mental and physical health' combined with s 1(2) doctor takes account of the woman's 'actual or reasonably foreseeable environment'.

  1. What is meant by the word abortion?

    Pro-life Christians claim abortion is completely disobeying this reference. Despite all of these rules, supposedly tarnished by abortion, some pro-life Christians accept that the taking of life can be justified as long as the person isn't an innocent person. I think that this is warped because all of humanity is

  2. What is meant by abortion?

    In most cases, fertilisation will not and could not have taken place. Tow tablets of high-dosage combined oral contraceptives (levonorgestrel, 250 micrograms, and ethinyloestradiol, 50 micrograms) are taken within 72 hours of intercourse and a further two tablets 12 hours later.

  1. The Chamberlain Case -

    Finally Lindy chamberlain had said that her baby daughter, Azaria, was wearing a Matinee jacket on the night of her disappearance. This accusation was said to be untrue and that Mrs Chamberlain had made the whole thing up. Once the Prosecution had prosecuted its arguments to the court, it was then the defences turn to present theirs.

  2. Challenges to Roe v. Wade - women's right to privacy?

    United States (1928), where it was regarded as "the most comprehensive of rights and the right most valued by civilized men" (The Center, 2003, p.26). Following that there is the case Skinner v. Oklahoma (1942), where the court in a unanimous opinion held that forcing a prisoner to undergo sterilization

  1. Religion and human relationships

    They say life is a gift from god. Catholics believe that the sixth commandment "you must not commit murder", says abortion is wrong because it deliberately brings life to an end. Scriptures contrast the blessing of life with a curse( which is the opposite of life-death.)

  2. Do Animals have Rights?

    Animal rights supporters believe that it is morally wrong to use or exploit animals in any way and that human beings should not do so. Animal welfare supporters believe that it can be morally acceptable for human beings to use or exploit animals, as long as: the suffering of the

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work