Any deliberate destruction of human life is considered ethically or morally wrong and is not considered to be mitigated by any benefits to others, as such benefits are coming at the expense of the life of what they believe to be a person.
In some cases, this belief extends to opposing abortion of fetuses that would almost certainly expire within a short time after birth, such as anencephalic fetuses.
Some anti-abortion activists concede arguments for permissible abortions, including therapeutic abortions, in exceptional circumstances such as incest, rape, severe fetal defects or when the woman's health is at risk. (See Abortion in the United States.) The anti-abortion movement became politically active and dedicated to the reversal of the Roe v.
Wade decision, which struck down most state laws restricting abortion in the first trimester of pregnancy. Some in the media have noted a revitalization of the anti-abortion movement in the 21st century.
The Guttmacher Institute said eighty laws restricting abortion were passed in the first six months of 2011, "more than double the previous record of 34 abortion restrictions enacted in 2005—and more than triple the 23 enacted in 2010".
Some abortion opponents also oppose certain forms of birth control, particularly hormonal contraception such as emergency contraception (ECPs), and copper IUDs which prevent the implantation of an embryo.
Because they believe that the term "pregnancy" should be defined so as to begin at fertilization, they refer to these contraceptives as abortifacients Attachment to an anti-abortion position is often but not exclusively connected to religious beliefs about the sanctity of life (see also culture of life).
Supporters of the consistent life ethic also oppose abortions as one of the acts that end human life.
In 1979, Juli Loesch linked anti-abortion and anti-nuclear weapons arguments to form the group Prolifers for Survival.