When I was a child there were only two, or sometimes three, channels to turn to on the television set, so when the news came on there was no escape! Even though I would have done almost anything to avoid such boring adult dribble, my parents insisted in watching it, so I sat and endured. In spite of my distaste, newscaster Walter Cronkite became quite familiar to me (during the heyday of CBS News in the ’60’s and 70’s, he was often referred to as “the most trusted man in America” after being so named in an opinion poll).
What he reported carried weight in my mind, and something he said in a news special documenting the major events of the 20th Century really struck me. Sitting at a news desk all of those years must have given him quite a perch from which to observe the changes and movements of humankind, and while discussing the decade of the 1960’s he made a profound statement; he said that birth control had ushered in the “s*xual revolution.” But he didn’t stop there; he went on to connect the dots and dared to speak of the moral breakdown that resulted.
This is a foreign thought to most of us now. These days we can hardly imagine a world without “birth control,” but there was a time when it was rare or non-existent. People were expected to meet, marry, and have children. Good girls said “NO” to their suitors because they did not want to get pregnant, and those that said “yes” were rare. Oh, and ALL Christian denominations were against contraception, not just the Catholic Church.
In fact, it used to be that no one worried about defending marriage because marriage didn’t need to be defined; s*x was saved for monogamous commitment because it wasn’t about self-gratification, it was about procreation (producing offspring).
Enter: Margaret Sanger, the founder of Planned Parenthood.
Some view Ms. Sanger as an angel, others as a demon. One thing is for certain; if she was an angel, her ideals were definitely not heavenly!
Of course, she claimed to be the champion of womanhood. She droned on and on about the plight of the poor, the slavery of women tied to children, etc.
Despite her own claims, however, her care for the poor was little to none. The concern she feigned to show for women who were poor and “trapped” with numerous children was simply a means to an end; to free society from any vestiges of Christian morality so that all could enjoy, “romantic dignity, unfettered self-expression, and the sacredness of unbridled s*xual desire.”
She was the first person I ever knew who was openly an ardent propagandist for the joys of the flesh.
Mabel Dodge, hostess for some of Margaret Sanger’s early discussions of “free love.”
Among Sanger’s works was a self-published rag called The Woman Rebel. It’s slogan was, “No Gods! No Masters!” and “denounced marriage as a ‘degenerate institution,’ capitalism as ‘indecent exploitation,’and s*xual modesty as ‘obscene prudery.'” (George Grant, Grand Illustions: The Legacy of Planned Parenthood)
One article in this publication asserted that “rebel women claim the following rights: the right to be lazy, the right to be an unmarried mother, the right to destroy…and the right to love.”
Consider this quote from Malthus himself originally published in his magnum opus, An Essay on the Principle of Population:
All children born, beyond what would be required to keep up the population to a desired level, must necessarily perish, unless room be made for them by the deaths of grown person…Therefore…we should facilitate, instead of foolishly and vainly endeavoring to impede, the operations of nature in producing this morality; and if we dread the too frequent visitation of the horrid form of famine, we should sedulously encouraged the other forms of destruction, which we compel nature to use. Instead of recommending cleanliness to the poor, we should encourage contrary habits. In our towns we should make the streets narrower, crowd more people into the houses, and court the return of the plague. In the country, we should build our villages near stagnant pools, and particularly encourage settlements in all marsh and unwholesome situations. But above all, we should reprobate specific remedies for ravaging diseases; and restrain those benevolent, but much mistaken men, who have thought they were doing a service to mankind by projecting schemes for the total extirpation of particular disorders.
Sanger’s engagement with Malthusian ethics gained her some strange bedfellows. Ultimately, she became associated with the ideas of Adolf Hitler himself–going so far as to publish articles by Ernst Rodin, head of the horrific Nazi Medical Experimentation Program.
Sanger wrote repeatedly about the evils of “excessive” family size, and claimed that a woman’s health continued to decline with each child, but research has since overturned her assertions; recent studies suggest that giving birth 10 times actually benefits a woman’s health. She also claimed that children had a greater chance of death with the addition of each child to a family, an assumption which does not hold up under closer scrutiny, and had more to do with probability than actual health (this becomes glaringly clear when we consider the long list of famous, influential people who were born to burgeoning families, many of whom were poor).
Because of her beliefs, Sanger became responsible for the opening of the first birth control “clinic” and then the founding of The Birth Control League, which was later renamed Planned Parenthood, responsible for the slaughter of 60,000,000+ human beings.
The most merciful thing that the large family does to one of its infant member is to kill it.
Margaret Sanger, Woman and the New Race
As a one-woman army fighting for a woman’s “right to choose,” “The Pill” was her Holy Grail. She invested over two million dollars of her own money in ovulation research during the 1950’s and encouraged Dr. Searle in his development efforts.
Hormonal contraception was eventually given full approval by the FDA in 1960, just six years before Sanger was to die at the age of 86, her ultimate dream realized.
The moment civilization is wise enough to remove the constraints and prohibitions which now hinder the release of inner energies, most of the larger evils of society will perish of inanition and malnutrition. Remove the moral taboos that now bind the human body and spirit, free the individual from the slavery of tradition, remove the chains of fear from men and women, above all answer their unceasing cries for knowledge that would make possible self-direction and salvation, and in so doing, you best serve the interests of society at large.
The Pivot of Civilization, 1922
But what has actually transpired in the last 56 years since the introduction of hormonal contraception into our society? Are we safer? Have wars been lessened (something Sanger prophesied would happen if contraception was approved and adopted)? Are there fewer unwanted babies? Has the overall health of women improved (consider the increases in cancers of the female organs, increased heart attacks, diabetes, etc.)?
Are women more virtuous and well-adjusted? Are men more responsible and caring towards women and children? Has human misery been eradicated or even lessened by one degree?
It seems that, instead of improving the plight of humankind, we have fallen farther down the slippery slope towards the abyss. More babies are born without fathers to teen girls than ever before, more women are rearing children by themselves, cohabitation is now the new “norm” for relationships, and promiscuity is acceptable and encouraged among the young and the old alike.
In releasing s*x from its association with procreation, we have opened up a huge Pandora’s Box. The proliferation and celebration of homos*xual lifestyles, the redefinition of marriage, and legislation that opens the door for hormonal treatments and surgical gender changes in young children can all have their origins traced to the “gift” of chemical contraception.
It makes one wonder; given the roots and the outcomes, shouldn’t we as Christians have a different attitude about The Pill than those in the world?
No condemnation here; using contraception will not send us to hell, but it is a bit telling, isn’t it?
Could it be that when we claim surrender to God we are holding back certain areas, areas that we don’t believe He has authority over?
Or maybe we are afraid because the true name of our God is spelled with a little “g”.
There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.