Constitutionally, the abortion question is an easy one, and one that the Centers for Disease Control would like to comment on. It would like to comment on the question because the question itself has become a red flag suggesting diseased Government.
Abortion is the intentional or unintentional, natural or induced process other than child-birth by which a woman who is pregnant becomes no longer pregnant. An abortion which occurs unintentionally is also called a miscarriage. At other times in history (specifically under Old Testament law), if someone else was responsible for a woman’s miscarriage (say through physical mistreatment or abuse), the woman might have received a judgement of monetary damages for the loss of the fruit of her womb.
Anti-abortionists are those who want to outlaw abortions that occur intentionally or that are induced by any means. They do not seek to outlaw accidental or unintentional abortions or miscarriages at this point in time. Their argument centers around their definition of human life, which they claim begins at conception or at some time shortly thereafter. If they are correct, they certainly have a valid argument that the unborn should be protected by the laws that cover every other citizen of the United States. The Roman Catholic denomination, headquartered in Italy, is considered the authoritative source for the definition of life in this case.
The US Constitution does not define the word life. There is no attempt made in any founding document to define when a human life begins. It seems obvious the founders did not intend to answer the question of abortion as it has been presented before federal courts across the land. If such is the case, then the question is not a federal one, and the right to decide it is reserved by the States and by the People under the ninth and tenth amendments. The federal government should not in any way be involved.
The abortion question is then a state question, and should, in order to respect the law of the land, be decided there. That is, it will have to be decided 50 times by the 50 different sovereign states.
Each of the states has a constitution, and the question can be resolved in the same manner as at the federal level. If a state constitution or law does not define when life begins, the answer to the question of abortion, which is a question of when life begins, remains as an individual right of each the People.
The question of when life begins is not one for which any man or woman can answer conclusively by himself or herself. It is a fact of life for all humans that there are certain things that no one knows innately: we were not born with the knowledge. For a woman to consider intentional abortion, and to have a clear conscience with regards to murder of a fellow human being, she has to definitively know when the life of a human being begins.
Individuals, then, have to appeal to a higher authority, to someone who is knowledgeable, if such an one exists. The anti-abortionists claim that that authority is the Roman Catholic church, which is administered and taught by a certain group of men, one of whom claims to be the final authority of all things pertaining to God. Most protestant denominations defer to their historical and traditional leader on matters they don’t explicitly disagree, and so concur.
If there is no higher authority to which an Individual might appeal, then the Individual himself is the highest authority, that is, the Individual is God, at least for himself. The Individual as God is the basic tenant of the religion of Atheism. The entire human experience (both collectively and individually) has demonstrated that such an assertion is ludicrous, and so we do not pursue that avenue.
There are other authorities that an Individual might choose rely upon besides the Roman Catholic church and its denominational progeny. The Centers for Disease Control believes that only the Scriptures, which claim and have proven themselves to us to be the word of God, are the only reliable authority and source of truthful information to which an honest inquirer or Individual could appeal in such matters.