I brought up a minor point in one post that it seems incongruous to believe in the death penalty and not abortion as both are essentially involving pro-death issues. Euthanasia for people should also be added to this discussion.
My point is that many people are anti-abortion and pro the death penalty, while others are pro-abortion and against the death penalty.
The anti-abortion and pro death penalty position certainly can have logic built into it. As an embryo or fetus is an innocent who has not done any wrong. The criminal has committed an act heinous enough to merit our society's death penalty. So I will grant that the pro-life and pro death penalty has some basis for its position.
The pro-abortion and anti-death penalty position seems to have no basis in reality and actually seems to be almost obscene. How can you be for killing unwanted unborn children, but not want to kill an adult who has committed a crime worthy of getting the death penalty. If the death penalty needs to be stricter to only include people who have been proven guilty by their own admission or other hard evidence then fine, but that position must admit that life has to begin at some point before birth. So how can a person logically argue for abortion and against the death penalty. It is okay to kill innocents, but not a guilty person?
My position on abortion has changed over the years and with genetic testing and such I can understand aborting certain births as the quality of life would be abhorrent. It is a difficult issue to really get your head around, but all in all I think people will choose abortion and we should make it legal to protect people from having back alley abortions. It is a fact that people will have abortions and making them illegal is more problematic then making it illegal. When it should be illegal to do so is a tough decision, but a line needs to be drawn.
I believe that the next great ethical dilemma we will face will be the idea of assisted suicide. We are willing to put our pets down when their quality of life is taken from them, but force humans to live no matter what their life is like. As an aging population puts an unwieldy financial burden on society I believe we will re-look this issue. It will be couched in different terms, but will be a decision driven by societal need as much as anything else. A society has limited resources and supporting people with no quality of life may become something we can't afford.