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Wed Jun 3, 2015, 02:09 PM

Scarlet Letters: Getting the History of Abortion and Contraception Right

X-posted from religion by request. This issue affects everyone and knowing the history helps us to safeguard it's future.

An interesting article I found while helping my friend study for her women's health class.

https://www.americanprogress.org/issues/religion/news/2013/08/08/71893/scarlet-letters-getting-the-history-of-abortion-and-contraception-right/




Sarah Cole carries firewood for chopping as part of her role as Plymouth colonist Alice Bradford at Plimoth Plantation in Plymouth, Massachusetts, Thursday, May 27, 2004.


Abortion was not just legal—it was a safe, condoned, and practiced procedure in colonial America and common enough to appear in the legal and medical records of the period. Official abortion laws did not appear on the books in the United States until 1821, and abortion before quickening did not become illegal until the 1860s. If a woman living in New England in the 17th or 18th centuries wanted an abortion, no legal, social, or religious force would have stopped her.

That, however, is not the way the anti-abortion movement likes to paint the history of abortion in the United States. Anti-abortion organizations such as the National Right to Life spin a narrative in which legal abortion is a historical anomaly and an unnatural consequence of modern America’s loose moral standards. On the National Right to Life’s website, for example, a page titled “Abortion History Timeline” describes “a few rogue doctors and midwives” performing abortions in early America, only “as far back as the 1850s.” In reality, trusted midwives and medical practitioners performed abortions from the beginning of American colonial life and throughout world history. Fox News also falsifies American abortion history on its website. On a page titled “Fast Facts: History of U.S. Abortion Laws,” it claims that abortion in the American colonies “was ruled a misdemeanor if performed prior to quickening.”

...

The Puritans brought their laws on abortion from merry old England, where the procedure was also legal until quickening. Although the Puritans changed much of England’s legal system when they established their “city upon a hill,” they kept abortion as a part of Puritan family life, allowing women to choose when and if they would become mothers—whether for the first time or the fifth time.

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Reply Scarlet Letters: Getting the History of Abortion and Contraception Right (Original post)
Lordquinton Jun 2015 OP
tkmorris Jun 2015 #1
Lordquinton Jun 2015 #2
kdmorris Jun 2015 #3
tanyev Jun 2015 #4
Lordquinton Jun 2015 #5
cleanhippie Jun 2015 #6
Heddi Jun 2015 #7
beam me up scottie Jun 2015 #8
Lordquinton Jun 2015 #11
LostOne4Ever Jun 2015 #9
Warren Stupidity Jun 2015 #10

Response to Lordquinton (Original post)

Wed Jun 3, 2015, 03:43 PM

1. Kicking for relevance

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Response to tkmorris (Reply #1)

Wed Jun 3, 2015, 03:45 PM

2. Thank you

This is such an important issue.

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Response to Lordquinton (Original post)

Wed Jun 3, 2015, 03:50 PM

3. kick and recced

A very important item for all of us remember when a Republican tells us that abortion was illegal until 1973...

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Response to Lordquinton (Original post)

Wed Jun 3, 2015, 04:43 PM

4. Jonathan Dudley: When evangelicals were pro-choice

In 1968, Christianity Today published a special issue on contraception and abortion, encapsulating the consensus among evangelical thinkers at the time. In the leading article, professor Bruce Waltke, of the famously conservative Dallas Theological Seminary, explained the Bible plainly teaches that life begins at birth:

“God does not regard the fetus as a soul, no matter how far gestation has progressed. The Law plainly exacts: 'If a man kills any human life he will be put to death' (Lev. 24:17). But according to Exodus 21:22–24, the destruction of the fetus is not a capital offense… Clearly, then, in contrast to the mother, the fetus is not reckoned as a soul.”

The magazine Christian Life agreed, insisting, “The Bible definitely pinpoints a difference in the value of a fetus and an adult.” And the Southern Baptist Convention passed a 1971 resolution affirming abortion should be legal not only to protect the life of the mother, but to protect her emotional health as well.



http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2012/10/30/my-take-when-evangelicals-were-pro-choice/

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Response to tanyev (Reply #4)

Wed Jun 3, 2015, 04:47 PM

5. Thank you for the addition

This is all part and parcel of the war on women, and on the poor.

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Response to Lordquinton (Original post)

Wed Jun 3, 2015, 06:35 PM

6. K&R

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Response to Lordquinton (Original post)

Wed Jun 3, 2015, 07:38 PM

7. Kickity Kickity Kick

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Response to Lordquinton (Original post)

Thu Jun 4, 2015, 03:47 AM

8. "Since ancient times women and men have been using a variety of contraceptive methods"

The case for contraception

The notion that contraception, like abortion, is a relatively new phenomenon is also wildly distorted. Since ancient times women and men have been using a variety of contraceptive methods beyond abstinence, and the pill is the only type of birth control that was not available until recent decades. Contraceptive methods historically include everything from “pulling out” to diaphragms and condoms. Distribution of and public education about birth control was legal in the United States until 1873, when the infamous Comstock Act was passed.

The act, which declared that information about birth control was “obscene,” grew out of sentiments similar to those that spurred the anti-abortion movement. It also led 24 states to pass similar restrictions; collectively, the federal and state restrictions were known as Comstock laws. Margaret Sanger, the well-known crusader for birth control and founder of what is now called Planned Parenthood, was arrested for violating Comstock laws while attempting to educate desperate women about how they could better control their own bodies and their families by using contraception.

It was not until 1965 that the last Comstock laws left standing in the United States were ruled unconstitutional. In Griswold v. Connecticut, the Supreme Court ruled that married women in every state had the right to access birth control. But unmarried women had to wait until the 1972 Supreme Court ruling in Eisenstadt v. Baird to gain the same right.


Very interesting article, thank you for posting!

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Response to beam me up scottie (Reply #8)

Thu Jun 4, 2015, 03:20 PM

11. This is one reason Planned Parenthood is the most important organizations we have

The work they do is the best defense against poverty spiraling out of control. Any who dight against it are working to create another generation locked into poverty. (I'm not saying aborting poor kids, I'm saying that giving poor kids the same reproductive options as non poor kids gives them options that are usually not available to them).

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Response to Lordquinton (Original post)

Thu Jun 4, 2015, 09:07 AM

9. K&R

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Response to Lordquinton (Original post)

Thu Jun 4, 2015, 09:32 AM

10. kick.

 

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