What I think I find most problematic about Conscientious Objection, or at least what lays the groundwork of my distaste for it, is its unique context. To put it more straightforwardly, Conscientious Objection can, but does not always, involve genuine cases of life and death.
Rather than considering one-off examples, let’s try a cluster approach.
i. A woman is in dire medical need of an abortion; if she does not receive an abortion, she will inevitably die during childbirth. If she lives, the fetus will die and vice versa.
ii. A woman is in significant medical need of an abortion; if she does not receive an abortion, she will inevitably suffer permanent physiological damage. If the fetus lives, she will live but in immense pain for the rest of her life. If she lives (i.e. has an abortion), the fetus will die.
iii. A woman is not in any medical need of an abortion; she elects to abort the fetus within the federally and state regulated timelines allowed to do so.