In our society everyone has become so quick to judge without the lack of knowledge. Criticism has become the norm. Instead of our country having positive attitudes we have allowed ourselves to feed on all the negativity that surrounds us. People lack knowledge on how important birth control and abortion are. Everyone should have knowledge as to why we have birth control and abortion in our country. Also, birth control and abortion are beneficial for woman in many ways. Unfortunately, the society views these topics as immoral and a destruction to human life. Although birth control and abortion are heavily debated, they should not be contentious.
Today, abortion is a very heavily debated topic. However, birth control is just as controversial. Abortion and birth control go hand in hand with each other. It’s easy to judge people’s decisions without background knowledge on how we ended up with birth control and abortion. Margaret Sanger was the women to make the term “birth control” popular and the founder of the birth control movement. Margaret was an early feminist and women’s right activist. She faced personal experiences that made her want to fight for women’s reproductive healthcare. Margaret also supported abortion because of the eugenics movement. Basically, eugenics is the theory that seeks to improve the human species through selective mating. Otherwise, abortion was immoral to her.
Sanger was influential on educating women about sex in the 1900’s. Being a nurse, she wanted to be able to help people further than what her job allowed her to do. People don’t realize that back in this time-frame woman were terminating their pregnancies on their own. Woman were chancing taking their own lives because of several different reasons whether it be poverty or knowing something was wrong with the pregnancy. Sanger later made a publication that promoted women’s rights to have birth control which was illegal under the Comstock Act. This law passed in 1873 made it illegal to distribute materials that could be used as contraceptives. Sanger eventually opened her first birth control clinic in the United States that landed her in trouble, again. Everything Sanger went through ended up falling in to place because she was able to get doctors to prescribe contraceptives to those under medical reasons. Before she had passed away, she was able to get materials in to our country and have the first contraceptive pill available. Sanger was such an important part of women’s rights even though she has been criticized for believing in eugenics.
“If unplanned pregnancies play a pivotal role in explaining poverty rates among females, there is reason to think that providing access to birth control might reduce a woman’s likelihood of entering poverty”. The first contraceptive pill was made available in the 1960’s. Although in the beginning unmarried woman who were still minors could not legally obtain the birth control because of the Comstock laws. The legal age for medical care was twenty-one which meant that anyone under twenty-one was considered a minor. Minors weren’t allowed medical access for the birth control unless they had a parent’s approval. All woman at age eighteen had access to birth control by 1975. “Bailey (2006) estimates that access to the Pill before age 21 resulted in an 8 percent increase in labor-force participation among women ages 26 to 30 and is associated with a 15 percent increase in hours worked among women ages 16 to 30”. The birth control pill becoming accessible to woman was an important part of history.
Many people see abortion as being morally unacceptable. However, abortion has its importance. Most states have a limit on how far the gestational age can be for it to be aborted. As stated earlier on, abortions are used to help the mother if it’s unsafe. They are used for crimes such as rape cases. You shouldn’t be made to carry a child for nine months after being raped. Also, abortion is used when there is a chance of the child having serious mental issues or there will be a chance of poverty. Long ago abortion was used as a contraceptive. Abortion should be one of women’s many rights without having to deal with all the controversy from the public.
An important legal case called Roe v. Wade took place in 1973 changing everything for abortion. They stated, “Roe was an unmarried pregnant woman who, due to economic hardship and the social stigma of having an illegitimate child, wanted to end her pregnancy with an abortion performed by a licensed physician in safe circumstances”. Henry Wade was a District Attorney in Dallas County challenging Jane Roe. Jane Roe was a name they used to protect the privacy of the individual. However, he didn’t think she had the right to terminate her pregnancy. However, it was voted that it’s a woman’s right to privacy to choose whether she wants to terminate her pregnancy under the fourteenth amendment. Roe v. Wade established a woman’s legal right to abortion.
It’s important that everyone understands the background on birth control and abortion, although neither one of these topics should be controversial. We live in a world where the phrase, “don’t judge a book by its cover” fits. Our society is quick to judge without knowing important information. Birth control hasn’t been as controversial as abortion has been in our society. However, it’s just as important as abortion. The Hobby Lobby case created quite a bit of controversy for birth control and women’s rights.
There were two specific cases that were dealing with the same circumstances regarding birth control. The one case was Hobby Lobby Stores and the other one dealt with the Conestoga Wood Specialties. The controversy was over the Affordable Care Act. Our law is that for-profit corporations are required to provide all employees with all forms of contraceptives at no cost. Several corporations including these two didn’t agree that they should have to provide such things that went against their beliefs. Hobby Lobby’s belief is that life begins at conception. They believe the morning after pill is destruction that is the same as abortion. It’s forbidden by their faith.
There was a law passed in 1993 called the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. Basically, the law protects people’s religious freedom. With this law the corporations believed they had reasonable guidelines to be exempt from providing their employees with emergency contraceptives. Which led to a very heavily debate that not everyone has the same beliefs as the corporations and the employees should be able to have access to all forms of contraceptives. However, Hobby Lobby Stores and Conestoga Wood Specialties won with the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. The corporations had a solid case for protecting their religious views. It was beneficial for the corporations on their beliefs, however it wasn’t beneficial for women in the workplace.
Employers must not be able to understand that without giving women access to these contraceptives would result in unwanted pregnancies. If they were getting pregnant than they weren’t going to be able to keep their employment. It would create a stressful situation of having to find employees all the time. The economy strengthens significantly from women and men being able to work. It’s unfair that employers can’t put their religious views aside to rightfully allow women to access of all forms of birth control.
Another important point would be the controversy on how birth control and abortion became just a woman’s problem? Surveys have been conducted where men agree that contraceptives should be a joint responsibility. However, men seem to lack knowledge on these topics that are important. Sanger believed that it was more of a woman’s responsibility. However, that was something women didn’t have back in the early 1900’s whereas today it’s a different story. Today women have numerous different options for contraception. However, men have a limited number of options which makes it look like solely the responsibility is on the women. Men’s choices are more permanent effects such as not being able to have sex. It’s great how far we’ve came today to be able to have numerous options for woman, but it doesn’t give men much responsibility. It takes two people to be involved and it should take two to prevent unwanted outcomes. Unfortunately, this situation will never have equality because women are the ones who conceive the baby. Society needs to understand that to prevent unnecessary controversy.
Nobody realizes the benefits that birth control has to offer women. Birth control isn’t used just to prevent pregnancies which is why it is so important. Not everyone has the same type of menstrual cycles. Some woman suffer horrendously with irregular periods and heavy long periods. Birth control has allowed woman to live a better life with being able to track when they’ll start there period. Menstrual cramps can be just as bad as the stomach flu. Woman also use birth control to control their acne as weird as that may seem. Birth control has came a long way from when Margaret Sanger first started pushing for it.
A very important benefit of birth control is that it’s also used for a medical problem that a lot of woman suffer with. It is called, “Polycystic Ovary Syndrome” also referred to as “PCOS”. Basically, with PCOS your hormones are imbalanced which can create several problems. With your hormones having an imbalance it tends to throw off your cycle such as having a hit and miss period. Sometimes when woman do end up getting their period when they haven’t for a few months it can be more severe than someone having a period monthly. Also, PCOS can cause excess hair growth, acne, and crucial pain. Men could be more crucial about this topic because they don’t understand what woman can go through with menstrual cycles. Margaret Sanger would’ve been astonished to see the outcome of what birth control has become to be when it was only started for one purpose.
Also, birth control is also used to regulate childbirth. Many people use the term, “family planning” as to regulate childbirth. Birth control pills contain estrogen and progesterone to prevent ovulation which means if an egg doesn’t release than there is no way of becoming pregnant. The advantage of birth control is that a woman can plan when she wants to try conceiving. However, every woman is different with how fast they’ll start ovulating after stopping the birth control because it will take some time for the system to get back to normal. Some woman begins to ovulate right away as for others it may take a few months to get back to normal. Woman may want to consider what type of birth control they want to go with depending on when they are planning to have children. Not every birth control has the same guidelines. However, it’s great that we have made progress with birth control for woman to have options.
Some woman are responsible by using birth control because they aren’t trying to have a child. However, sometimes for some reason birth control doesn’t work and a woman may end up conceiving. That’s where society starts criticizing saying that these women are irresponsible. Not everyone gets pregnant under the best circumstances like those who are planning to have a child. Some woman aren’t financially stable to support the child and they know that. Why would a woman want to put a child through not having everything that they need? Many circumstances that often lead to woman getting abortions are partner related issues, health concerns, not mature enough, etc. There are other circumstances such as criminal happenings like rape for instance. A woman more than likely that gets pregnant from being raped is not going to want to have a baby. The society doesn’t want to look at any different point of view other than abortion being considered murder. However, it is a responsible decision for woman to be mature enough to decide whether they are in the right place to be able to provide for the child.
During the 1960’s, not only did thousands of people march for an end to racist laws discriminating the black but the second wave of feminism was going on. During this time equality for woman was pushed heavily. Woman didn’t have employment. There employment consisted of duties in the home. It was much different than how today goes with woman. The second wave focused on things like reproductive rights absence of voice, and employment. Woman during this time were often raped in their own home which leads to a point mentioned early about why woman would self-terminate their pregnancies. The women weren’t getting pregnant by choice. If women couldn’t control how many kids, they were having than they couldn’t uphold a job. Important things took place during this era such as the first birth control pill in 1961 which helped women from getting pregnant. Birth control is what women needed to be able to take a stand and fight for themselves.
John F. Kennedy was the president at the time of second wave of feminism. Congress had passed an Equal Pay Act for woman facing inequalities. Although the act didn’t help much. A Civil Rights Act was later passed that was intended for outlawing discrimination against African Americans. Women were still unsatisfied with what was happening. An organization was established to help gain equal rights as men. It took a long time for women to start gaining equality but once they started they didn’t stop. Women’s role has changed dramatically. Women having been growing in to political offices and many other important jobs. In 1968, Shirley Chisholm became the first African-American woman elected to Congress. After that, more women were brought into the political atmosphere. To think back in the 1970’s there was separate columns under jobs for the women and the men. The second wave of feminism was a roller-coaster for women but it is very important to acknowledge what they went through. One little change with birth control made a huge difference in womens lives.
The country had a huge significant economic increase from birth control. Birth control was able to decrease fertility rates and increase employment rates. Women were able to pursue things with out having to worry about having an unexpected pregnancy or an unwanted pregnancy. It’s hard to get anything done or accomplish goals when you never know when you are going to have an unexpected pregnancy. As for today, woman don’t realize how easy they have it. They can use birth control for so many other things plus have a variety of options to choose from. Birth control has come much farther with the different methods they’ve been able to provide women with.
The social effects for women from the 1960’s of being able to have birth control available was significant. Birth control gave women a sense of power that they never had before, and it was only beginning. Women feared that they would always be imprisoned by men in their own households. Only men were able to take part in what was available for employment and higher education because women were stuck at home taking care of their children. Birth control opened doors for women and they finally had control over when they wanted to have children. Many of them wanted a higher education and were able to fulfill their goals. They were able to pursue a career without the fear of unexpected pregnancies or unwanted pregnancies. It would mess a person up if you weren’t able to have a choice on what you wanted to do with your life. It gave women a new role in society and a sense of relief.
The birth control wasn’t intended to make such an economic difference like it did. Margaret Sanger was able to achieve more than what she intended on doing. Women took advantage of everything that they were capable of doing like going to school to get a good job that primarily consisted of all men. The pill gave women access to being able to invest in their careers instead of staying home with their children and taking care of the household. They had a choice for the first time. Women that were studying degrees in school were putting off motherhood till middle ages. Having children wasn’t the only thing that was being put on delay. Women were getting married later because they could have intercourse without worrying about having an unwanted pregnancy. The pill changed everything for women making the economy a better place.
More than 99% of women today have used some type contraceptive method. Not everyone uses or has tried using birth control for the same reason. Back in the 1960’s birth control was made for primarily a contraceptive. However, people today use it more for medical reasons. The pill is still the most common type of birth control that is being used even with all the different contraceptive methods that are available. The women who end up with unexpected pregnancies while on birth control often misuse their birth control. While a small portion, about five percent that takes their birth control correctly ends op with an unexpected pregnancy. Having a small percent have complications with pregnancy is amazing considering all the good that birth control has done for our country. There is plenty of information to make people see the significance in birth control and abortion.
As expressed, our society has become a place where we are quick to judge. In our country we would rather bring each other down than lift each other up. It should be someone’s right to be on birth control or have an abortion without having to be questioned or judged. It’s important to have knowledge on why we have birth control and abortion in our country. Women would be more appreciative being able to use birth control and abortion knowing the background. Birth control and abortion play a huge role in our history for women. Everyone should be aware of the importance that birth control and abortion have in our society. Although birth control and abortion are heavily debated, they should not be contentious.