Birth Control : The Rise Of The Modern Woman

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Birth Control: The Rise of the Modern Woman Jordan James His 304 Dr. Elizabeth Payne December 5, 2014 The Rise of the Modern Woman The topic of birth control has been discussed continuously throughout American history for over a century. The concept of birth control at the time, was viewed as a dangerous practice and was seen as harmful to the public, while at the same time viewed by women 's suffragists as a right equally as symbolic of freedom to citizens as the American flag. Birth control was not only a way to participate in sexual activity without “suffering the consequences of raising children” as many people believed that it was for. But in reality, being able to control if and when a woman was to get pregnant…show more content…
These ideas led to a strong fight against birth control which included intensive sexual education courses and “extra-domestic” activities for women of all ages. These efforts were carried on to eventually create the Comstock Act(Tone 147). Doctors who disapproved even went as far as to say that the method of “coitus interrupts” was harmful to a woman’s uterus as well as caused stress and paranoia, and should not be practiced(Friedman 7). Ultimately, contraception was frowned upon because sex itself was frowned upon. People did not openly discuss their sex lives and it was not seen as a desire; it was practiced for one purpose and that was to procreate(Friedman 7). Of course, we all know now that sexual desires are very real and natural and that in those times it just was not seen that way, for women. If women of that era did not want to have children, the only way they could keep from it was to not have sex. Obviously, sex out of wedlock was unthinkable(Friedman 7). The Comstock Act, passed in 1873, made birth control illegal and declared it a crime to “distribute information about it”(Friedman 7). This law made mailing or distributing any type of birth control propaganda illegal. These conservative activists did many campaigns where they related birth control and abortion to murder(Tone 147). In Connecticut, one of the more strict laws stated that “any person who will use any drug, medicinal article or instrument for the purpose of preventing conception shall be
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