Thursday, July 06, 2006

here is a little bit of the history of contraception in this country. it's a short history. contraception has only been legal for less than a century.

less than a century. we have had full control over our reproductive organs for less than a century. the originating article she refers to can be found here.

key quote:

A woman's bodily integrity, her moral autonomy, her health, her very life depend on whether she has access not just to the right to reproductive freedom but also to the health care and education services that make rights meaningful. Circumstances do not change that principle. Nor is the human right to reproductive self-determination divisible. You either have it or you don't.

i find that apalling and amazing. and it's even more amazing that there are those who think that we shouldn't have this right, that we shouldn't use contraception (no matter our circumstances) at all. from the pill to Essure, women are to reject it all because biology is destiny.

looked at as part of women's history, medical history or any kind of cultural history, it's clear to me that this war on contraception isn't just about religion (it almost never is.)

it's about gender and about finding ways to penalize women who step outside of conscripted roles of wife or mother. we need to start asking ourselves, when a woman can't control what her body does (or does not do) who will control it? who makes the rules about what we can do with our internal organs?

this retrogressive return to a time before fracking modernity makes me angry.

(and for those who really don't get why i'm angry or who feel that i'm just some freak-ass feminist, it's about history. do some archival research into women's health, medical opinions on women's health and bodies, marriage laws, property laws and even legal rights from the 19th century backward and you'll be amazed at how little we've progressed, in terms of attaining the level of legal personhood that men have always been privileged to enjoy.)


Molly Malone said...

I haven't read the links yet, but I concur with your outrage. ... and I must admit I'm also secretly bubbly inside that you used the word "fracking." ;)

ding said...

though i'm still a fan of a good old anglo-saxon profanity (as an english major i like useful words used usefully) i am becoming fonder of 'frack' and all its derivations.

so frack on!

beepbeepitsme said...

"It is now quite lawful for a Catholic woman to avoid pregnancy by a resort to mathematics, though she is still forbidden to resort to physics or chemistry. " H. L. Mencken

ding said...

i just don't get it. i really don't. i just don't get what's so problematic about women using contraception. (even though woman have been using contraceptive methods covertly for hundreds of years.)

it's all just social anxiety projected onto a woman's body. angrifying.