Libertarian Twitter Master. Blogger and Vlogger! Veteran, Voluntaryist, Vegan. GoA Member and Non-Profit Director.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Challenging the Libertarian Stance on Abortion

Challenging the Libertarian Stance on Abortion:

It seems that the general narrative of a person that is a Libertarian is also pro-choice. While there is some dissension in the ranks on that issue, it seems that most are pro-choice. A core belief of Libertarianism is ultimate free will, as long as it doesn’t harm or infringe upon the rights of others. But is having an abortion harming another and robbing them of their right to life?

I want to challenge that frame of mind with my own thoughts and opinions. And I will admit, I still am struggling with this issue and still try to reconcile with both sides.

Everyone focuses so much of the debate on when life begins. Based off that, the person makes their stance for pro-life or pro-choice. Some say you must look at it at a biological stand point. That once the egg and sperm merge and start to duplicate, you have a separate form of life. Others take the spiritual or moral ground that a soul is not inside of a person until the child leaves the mother.
Regardless of all those debates, whether its life at conception, before three months its ok but not after, or you can abort up into the baby is born. I think everyone agrees once the baby is born, it is a human.

Based upon that, consider this:

IF the abortion had NOT been performed, wouldn’t the child or embryo or fetus be a full-fledged human being? You go into the clinic and decide to abort, the child never exists. However, if you back out and go through with the pregnancy, a person is on this earth(excluding the cases of miscarriage).

The Libertarian Party’s “Statement of Principles” [] it says that: “We hold that all individuals have the right to exercise sole dominion over their own lives.”

When having an abortion, are you not robbing a person of life before they even have a chance to grasp it? If you let a person eat an apple, but then you pump it out of their stomach, they still are robbed of its sustenance. Did you still steal the apple from them? Even though they technically ate it?

I think that most Libertarians believe that animal cruelty, abuse and neglect is wrong and should be against the law. But a dog is not a person, it has no rights, it is the property of the owner in the eyes of the law. Is it within government’s power to dictate what you can do with your own property? What of stray or wild animals with no owner? If you abuse them, you are not harming anyone’s property. Where do you draw the line?

In contrast:

The “Statement of Principles” goes on to say: ‘the right to live in whatever manner they choose, so long as they do not forcibly interfere with the equal right of others to live in whatever manner they choose.”

Is an unwanted child in the womb a person forcibly interfering with the rights of the mother? Is the right of a mother to have complete control over her body override the right of an embryo to the chance at life?

Ayn Rand, the Libertarian Philosopher, seems to think so [Ayn Rand on abortion]:

“An embryo has no rights. Rights do not pertain to a potential, only to an actual being. A child cannot acquire any rights until it is born. The living take precedence over the not-yet-living (or the unborn).”

This point of view makes sense. She assumes that life starts at birth and advocates that the rights of someone indisputably “alive” should not be trumped by an unborn human. She does on to make it clear that according to Libertarian philosophy, every person has a right to dictate their own bodies. This fact is undisputed. But when the right to your body destroys the body of another, whether you believe alive or soon to be alive, is a fact that needs to be carefully examined.

She goes on to say:

“Never mind the vicious nonsense of claiming that an embryo has a “right to life.” A piece of protoplasm has no rights—and no life in the human sense of the term. One may argue about the later stages of a pregnancy, but the essential issue concerns only the first three months.”

Let’s say you get a bacterial infection. Apart from the first bacterial cells that entered your body to make you sick in the first place, all the bacteria after that formed inside your body. On a cellular, biological standpoint, is this not the same as getting pregnant? Apart from the sperm entering the female in the first place, the egg and the duplication beyond that all formed in her body. Do we not have the right to take antibiotics and destroy the bacteria making us sick? Isn’t the fetus essential a growth that ultimately ends up being a vessel that a human spirit can inhabit?

As you can tell, I can see it from both sides of the debate. I think it comes down to it though, the LP’s statement, specifically on abortion, is correct:

”Recognizing that abortion is a sensitive issue and that people can hold good-faith views on all sides, we believe that government should be kept out of the matter, leaving the question to each person for their conscientious consideration.”

Regardless of the right of a woman to dictate her body, personally I believe it is a sad act of desperation. In my humblest opinion, if you do not want the child, at least see it through to give that future person a chance a life.

Give your child up for adoption, because who knows, he or she may be the next Dave Thomas, Steve Jobs, Faith Hill or Ray Liotta(All adopted as infants).

-The Slavic Libertarian
My Twitter

My YouTube Channel


  1. I agree with you completely I struggle with this question all the time

  2. It is a hard one. I can see both side. I think it will just have to come down to each individual's own moral code.

  3. I also see valid points on both sides, which is why this is such a sensitive, controversial issue. In this matter, I am firmly pro-choice. I do not want to tell other people what to do with their own bodies, and I don't want the government telling me what to do with mine. For me, personally, I will never get an abortion... but I want to have come to that decision ON MY OWN instead of the government telling me that it's not a decision I'm able to make.

    When I got pregnant with my son, I was 20 years old and single. I had to face the fact that I would be joining the Single Mothers crowd, which is not a plan I ever had for myself. I very briefly considered abortion, but decided that I couldn't go through with it. Today, I'm very glad I didn't (because I love my son to bits, no matter how crazy he drives me), but I'm also glad that I was free to come to that decision on my own without the influence of the government or anyone else.

    For the record, I also considered adoption... but decided that I am not the kind of person who can bring a baby to term and go through the pain of labor and delivery just to hand that child over to someone else. So adoption, for me personally, isn't an option either. But that's MY choice. Not yours, not the government's. :)