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What is a foetus if it is not a human being?

In his letter of March 29, David Fullerton writes: "It is a fact that a foetus is not a human being; it has only the potential to be such."

Discussions of abortion seem to be a mixture of discussions about facts and discussions about values.

What David Fullerton apparently means is that he does not value the foetus as a human being, because his/her dependence on the mother makes the foetus unworthy, in his eyes, of human protection.

This is itself a sad confession to make. However, if we are talking facts, they are the opposite of what he says: a foetus is an actual being of some kind and, if so, what actual being is it, if not an actual human being?


Union Theological College, Belfast

Belfast Telegraph


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