The Christian view of human nature is that the intention of God in human life prevails over the human intention for the kind of life they would like to live. Moreover, the cases study indicates that human life is essential and should not be terminated at any point. For instance, in the case study, the doctor suggests medical abortion as the best option for Jessica, but aunt Maria pleads with Jessica to keep the pregnancy regardless of the outcome. She argues that Jessica should allow the fetus to live on (intend of God). This view can be linked to the rights of moral theory. The theory holds that human rights are particularly guaranteed and no person is entitled to take away another person’s right to life. All humans are allowed to the right to life and right to humanity. Thus, agreeing to abortion would be a violation of the fetus right to life. The Christian view as demonstrated in the case study is firmly connected to the ‘rights theory’ since both aunt Maria and Jessica are opposed to the doctor’s suggestion, and they pray to God to guide them on which decision to take. The United Nations’ Human Rights Declaration includes among others the right to life which should not be taken away (Heifer, 2017).
The concept of intrinsic human dignity reflects on respecting that humans deserve merely by virtue of being human beings. Humans, therefore, have no option but to value other human beings. This concept is Kent’s notion of dignity to humanity. Jessica’s cases study is related to the intrinsic dignity of humans since it promotes the idea of the human right to life. By considering to avoid medical abortion as an option, Jessica promotes the concept of intrinsic dignity to the unborn baby. She demonstrates that the unborn fetus should be allowed an opportunity to live regardless of the impending disabilities among other disorders. Jessica and Maria believe that it is God’s intention for disabilities to occur. Therefore, Jessica dignifies the fetus since the fetus is a human and deserves dignity (Pless, Maak, & Harris, 2017).
Jessica is in a dilemma, unable to choose between improving their family’s socio-economic status and keeping the pregnancy of a fetus that lacks all limbs and may develop Down syndrome. However, Jessica is convicted that life is sacred and as a Christian, it is wrong to take away a life. Therefore, Jessica applied the ‘rights theory’ which states that humans have guaranteed rights which should not be taken away and right to life is among the essential human rights.
The doctor, on the other hand, applies the utilitarianism theory which proposes that action is perceived as morally right if it maximizes the good while minimizing the bad (Mill, 2016). The doctor believes that medical abortion will be the best option for Jessica; the doctor bases his argument on the fact that keeping the pregnancy would only results to more tribulations for the family as well as the unborn baby. First, the baby will be born with no limbs, and there are high chances that it will develop down syndrome. The doctor feels that performing a medical abortion will save the parents from the problems of taking care of a disabled child with no limbs while the unborn baby will be saved from the living a disability life without limbs. Therefore, the doctor seeks to maximize good while minimizing suffering for the family.
Marco is supportive of whichever decision which will be taken by Jessica. However, he has reservations. He feels that it will be a burden to take care of a disabled child in the face of their economic insecurity. Marco applies the consequentialism theory approach since he focuses on the consequences that the bay will have on their financial security. He feels that the disabled baby once born will be a barrier to their economic improvement since the baby being that will lack both limbs may require special care which adds up on their expenditures. The consequentialism theory looks at the consequences of an action to determine if an act is good or bad (Ahlstrom-Vij & Dunn, 2018).
Maria believes that Jessica keeps her pregnancy and allow the intention of God to take place. She further asks Jessica to think about her responsibility as a mother. Maria, therefore, applies the ‘duty theory.’ Maria reminds Jessica that it is her moral duty to keep the unborn baby and be a responsible parent to the baby. Moral obligations are duties that humans are charged and they are bound to do them. For instance, Christians have a moral obligation of living a moral life by obeying the ten commandments.
Jessica is convinced that life is sacred and that must be respected. As a Christian Jessica feels that she must respect the fetus’ right to life hence the rights theory
The doctor believes that abortion would be the best option for Jessica and suggest to her. Through abortion, Jessica will save her family the stress of taking care of a disabled child; thus, trying to minimize the bad and maximizing the good. This decision by the doctor reflects the utilitarian theory.
Marco feels that keeping the pregnancy will lead to a disabled child which in turn will hinder their economic growth. Thus Marco looks at the consequences of maintaining the pregnancy and how it will affect their economic growth. This is in line with the consequentialism theory
Maria, on the other hand, feels that it is Jessica’s responsibility to be a responsible parent to the unborn fetus. Her argument reflects the duty theory/moral obligation theory
The rights theory justifies Jessica’s recommendation to keep the fetus as the theory is rooted on substantial evidence that life is so precious and must be respected. Moreover, life starts at conception.
The utilitarian theory applied by the doctor supports the recommendation that abortion is the best option for Jessica as it will help to minimize suffering for both the unborn baby and the family at large.
Marco, on the other hand, emphasizes the consequences of the disabled child on their economic growth as a family. The consequentialism theory supports the doctor’s idea of terminating the pregnancy.
Finally, Maria bases her argument on the moral obligation theory which requires Jessica to be a responsible pageant to the fetus. However, this theory lacks evidence supporting the notion of keeping the child.
I agree with the utilitarianism theory applied by the doctor. This is because the case of the unborn fetus is complicated and will only bring more suffering to the couple as compared to the good the fetus will bring. It is therefore worth undertaking a medical abortion to get rid of the fetus to minimize the pain that the couple would have gone through. The utilitarianism theory supports the idea of conducting a medical abortion as this is the only way through which the pain the couple is going through can be minimized.
Ahlstrom-Vij, H. K., & Dunn, J. (2018). Epistemic consequentialism. Oxford University Press.
Heifer, L. R. (2017). Overlegalizing human rights: International relations theory and the Commonwealth Caribbean backlash against human rights regimes. In International Law and Society (pp. 125–204). Routledge.
Mill, J. S. (2016). Utilitarianism. In Seven masterpieces of philosophy (pp. 337–383). Routledge.
Pless, N. M., Maak, T., & Harris, H. (2017). Art, ethics and the promotion of human dignity. Journal of Business Ethics, 144(2), 223–232.