WITHOUT APPEALING TO RELIGION
A Brief, Air-Tight Argument Against Abortion

September 2001By Eugene Hoyas

Eugene Hoyas, a Byzantine Catholic, is a brand manager for a coatings manufacturer in New Jersey. He graduated with a double major in Zoology and Political Science from Drew University.

One of the most frequently asked questions in the abortion debate is: “When does life begin?” It’s the wrong question. Life, as any biologist will tell you, never begins. It always ends, eventually — but it never begins. All living matter comes only from other living matter.

Let us narrow the scope of the question. “When does human life begin?” The answer is the same as above: Human life comes only from pre-existing human life. Living human cells come only from other living human cells.

Alright then, “When does human life become a human being?” That is the correct question. The answer lies in the definition of “human being.” Biologically, a living human being is an organism, Homo sapiens.

What, then, is an organism? It is a living, corporeal entity that exists and functions of, by, and for itself. It may consist of a single cell, such as an amoeba, or of a group of cells, tissues, and organs that can achieve titanic size, such as a blue whale.


You have two options:

  1. Online subscription: Subscribe now to New Oxford Review for access to all web content at newoxfordreview.org AND the monthly print edition for as low as $38 per year.
  2. Single article purchase: Purchase this article for $1.95, for viewing and printing for 48 hours.

If you're already a subscriber log-in here.



Back to September 2001 Issue

Read our posting policy Add a comment
Be the first to comment on this story!