Abortion Rights Essay

1320 words - 6 pages

Birth control has been a very controversial topic and taboo since the classical period. Before one can grasp why and how birth control and the use of birth control can be controversial, one will need to understand what birth control is and the history. First birth control needs to be a woman’s basic right, and by the government controlling birth control the government are controlling the liberty for women. Birth control is a practice, Material, or device by which sexual intercourse can be rendered incapable of producing a pregnancy (Walker p.161).
While birth control through had been practice by both men and women in a extensive variety of ways, but only in the past two centuries that ...view middle of the document...

As time when on other western theologian came up with more ways to place restraints on the human sexuality. By the Middle Ages intercourse was not permitted on Sundays, Fridays, feast days and throughout the 40 days of lent. Sexual intercourse was basically forbidden for half of the year. So if a woman was to conceive an abnormal baby the reasoning behind it was because she had sex during her menstruation or doing the forbidden time.
The term birth control was coined by Margaret Sanger, the leading activist in the United States for contraceptive prevention in the twentieth century. According to Sanger the movement started on the day one of her patients, Sadi Sachs, died from an induced abortion. At that time, Sanger was a 29 year old mother of three, working as a public health nurse in new York city’s lower east side. Specializing in obstetrics, she witness women struggling to deliver and raise baby after baby in crowded urban conditions with little money or power. She recalls the number of women who begged her to tell them the “secret” to preventing conception (Kline p.39). All she was permitted by law to recommend them were condoms or withdrawal, both which depended on the cooperation of the male partner. One day, she was called to the home of a young Jewish immigrant living in a tenement on Hester Street. Sadi Sachs, mother of three, was suffering from complications of a self-induced septic abortion. Sanger recalled the accompanying doctor’s response to Sach’s plea not to have another child was for her to tell her husband to sleep on the roof (Klinep.39). Three months later however Sanger was called again back to the home of Sachs to find her pregnant and dying of Septicemia. It was because of this event that set off the birth control movement. Sanger told this particular story over the period of her activist career emphasizing class-based restrictions on fertility control. She believed that it was the poor uneducated women that was in need of access to birth control and vowed to make it her lifelong crusade-making birth control accessible to women. In 1914 she began publishing the women Rebel which was a magazine targeting working woman to educate themselves about sexuality and contraception. She uses this magazine also to challenge the 1873 Comstock law, which prohibited the importation and mailing of contraceptive information and devices in the United States. It was also in this magazine where she chose the term birth control in replacement of awkward phrases like family limitation or voluntary motherhood. After only seven issues of the magazine, it was shut down being that it was “unmailable” by the U.S post offices. But this did not discourage Sanger for she birthed the birth control movement which began in 1914.
The American birth control movement starting with the efforts of Margaret Sanger and the national birth control league was an attempt to promote family planning through contraceptive use among recently arrived...

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