The article I chose was American and the Pill. What I found interesting was how black women were essentially cast out of the dialogue surrounding the release of a new birth control method. When the pill came out, it was revolutionary to women as they could now choose when or if they wanted to have children and could finally be sexually liberated. Unfortunately, black women were not the focus when talking about the pill, as it seemed it was mainly white, middle-class women who mattered. Plus, many black women were justly afraid of the pill as many of them had gone through forced sterilization. Black men likened it to black genocide. So black women were left out of the conversation by not only white women but also people in their own movement. Certain movements were created to help black women take control of their voice and to let America know that they, too, are women who deserve reproductive freedom.
Another part of the article talks about medicalization of the pill, which is interesting in itself because Lady Science makes some very good points. It’s quite odd how a woman that takes the pill has to go visit her gynecologist just to get it prescribed, even if she’s been taking that particular brand for a while. I know this to be true as I have to go through this nonsense as well. Despite taking the same pill for a couple years now, every time my refills run out, I have to go speak to my doctor to get them refilled. It turns out to be a huge waste of time for not only me, but also for my doctor. That becomes quite costly for someone not on insurance.
The thing about this is that none of it is surprising at all. Women have consistently been at a disadvantage when it comes to fertility rights and even more so if you were/are a woman of color. It’s just unfortunate that these conversations still come up today, despite medical and sociological advances. I think further research should go into how men are treated when it comes to their reproductive rights. I’ve heard that it’s quite easy for men to go in and get a vasectomy whenever they please, whilst if a woman wants to get her tubes tied, she has to have fulfilled some sort of criteria, such as having already had children or are of a specific age. If I could ask the author a question it would probably be what should we be doing to ensure our reproductive rights are not the government’s problem?