Abortion Bioethics Medical abortion Philosophy

The latest on natural-law theory and unborn human life

In a past post, I mentioned the dialogue between philosopher Fr. Martin Rhonheimer and his critics – or, perhaps one should say, one of the dialogues, or one aspect of the dialogue – namely, that concerning his ‘vital conflicts’ theory. In the Autumn 2011 issue of the National Catholic Bioethics Quarterly, there is more, dealing […]


Abortion, Paternity and Fathers’ Rights

Earlier this year I posted a link to an editorial arguing that fathers should have a right to veto the abortion of their children.  I noted that the US Supreme Court struck down a Pennsylvania law that required husbands be notified of a wife’s intent to have an abortion in Planned Parenthood v. Casey, notwithstanding that notification could be avoided by […]

Abortion Bioethics Philosophy Philosophy

Human Dignity and Supreme Court Jurisprudence

SSRN has a new article entitled The Jurisprudence of Dignity ( The author, Leslie Meltzer Henry, identifies the variety of meanings given to the word “dignity” in Supreme Court cases: institutional status as dignity, liberty as dignity, equality as dignity, personal integrity as dignity, and collective virtue as dignity. The article reveals that the Court’s […]

Abortion Philosophy University Faculty for Life

Abortion and Consistency

Over at the Public Discourse blog, UFL member Chris Kaczor responds to Dennis O’Brien’s argument that prolifers are not serious unless we seek to impose the same criminal penalties for murder and for the performance of an abortion. In Let’s Talk About Abortion: A Reply to Dennis O’Brien Professor Kaczor argues that there are many […]

Abortion Fetal anomolies and disabilities Philosophy Religious views

Abortion and Conjoined Twins

A young single mom from Wisconsin has become the subject of international commentary due to her decision to continue her pregnancy after being informed that the twin daughters she is carrying are joined at the heart and share other internal organs. Some readers of this blog may recall the controversy that arose in England a […]

Abortion Constitutionality Philosophy Politics

Law blog post on fetal personhood

Today seems to be the day to consider the legal status of the unborn – first the Nebraska law suit and now this post over on Prawfsblawg, Why Does it Matter if a Fetus is a Person? I think Professor Horwitz’s analysis is rather simplistic in his claims that fetal personhood decides the question of […]

Abortion Death and dying Feminism Philosophy

Abortion and Family Solidarity

UFL member, Richard Stith, has posted a new article, Anti-choice: When Having a Choice Diminishes Family Solidarity, on SSRN. Richard argues that the availability of abortion causes many family members to reject or reduce support for women who continue their pregnancies in difficult circumstances because “it is their choice.” He notes a similar effect when […]

Abortion Feminism Philosophy

abortion and sex equality arguments

Here is a new article by Priscilla Smith (“Give Justice Ginsburg What She Wants: Using Sex Equality Arguments to Demand Examination of the Legitimacy of State Interests in Abortion Regulation“) advocating that pro-abortion litigants use sex discrimination arguments in challenging laws restricting abortion. Priscilla Smith is a former attorney for the Center for Reproductive Rights. Erika Bachiochi’s […]

Abortion Feminism Philosophy Women's health

Responding to Radical Autonomy Claims

Erika Bachiochi has a wonderful new post on the Public Discourse Blog entitled 40 Years Later: How to Undo the Autonomy Argument for Abortion Rights. In the post, she responds to the autonomy argument made famous by Judith Jarvis Thomason in A Defense of Abortion. She argues, like UFL member Frank Beckwith who she quotes, […]

Abortion Bioethics Philosophy

Waldron’s new article on moral absolutes

Jeremy Waldron has a new piece, What Are Moral Absolutes Life?, posted on SSRN. Exploration of this question is particularly important if we are to successfully persuade people that “do not kill the innocent” should be the law of the land, and that the unborn are among the innocent who must not be killed.