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To what extent does disparity exist with the legalization of the birth control movement in regards to poor and minority women in the United States - Essay Example

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Birth control has been a major issue since its introduction in the United States. It arose out of socialist, feminist, and other groups concerned with women's rights and sexual freedom. It was after 1920 that the birth control movement became gradually transformed into a respectable, non radical reform cause, but with women's rights secondary only to the overriding concern with medical health and population control…
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To what extent does disparity exist with the legalization of the birth control movement in regards to poor and minority women in the United States
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To what extent does disparity exist with the legalization of the birth control movement in regards to poor and minority women in the United States

Download file to see previous pages... But both prevented the spread of birth control by changing from a popular, participatory cause to a professional operation (Gordon, 1975).
The most prominent activist is Margaret Sanger. She is known the founder of the birth-control movement in the United States was Margaret Sanger. She has witnessed the results of uncontrolled fertility, self-induced abortions, and high rates of infant and maternal mortality. Her experiences as a nurse and midwife led her to focus all her energy on the single cause of reproductive autonomy for women. She was convinced that there is a need for extensive information on contraception. She established information and advice centers that help women in safe, effective and female controlled contraceptive. She founded the American Birth Control League which later became Planned Parenthood Federation of America. That time issues regarding birth control and contraception was considered obscene and this results to continuous government harassment and closure of her shops. The Comstock Act which was passed in 1873 states that it is illegal to convey any information or devices that could be used for preventing conception and defined it as obscene was used against Sanger in her advocacy (Battaglia, 1998).
It was the government that controlled the access of poor women to birth control, sterilization and abortion for the most part of the 20th century. Primarily concerned about the maternal and infant mortality, the officials began to offer access to birth control centers but women have limited access. Birth control has difficulty in finding legislative support mainly because of the eugenic rhetoric and arguments used by supporters to promote them. There are four main groups that influenced the nature and delivery of the policies. First are the medical and social scientists that offer theories about the origins and characteristics of poverty and proposed solutions that involved the control of reproduction. Second are the leading health and welfare professionals that shaped public policy and influenced the nature of reproductive services. Third, the state and county officials who implemented public health and welfare policies shaped the delivery of reproductive services. Finally, the poor and minority women targeted by the programs responded to them.
Factors such as sexuality, class and racial conflicts shaped the negotiations over reproductive control. The ability of women to control their sexuality in terms and conditions of motherhood are the center of debates about birth control. Class and racial background determines whether women will have access to reproductive health care. It was assumed by Policy makers and health and welfare professionals that poor single mothers in particular if they are African American, Hispanic, or Native American-lacked the ability to function properly as mothers and that they should be discouraged from further childbearing. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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