Sex, Science, Nature and ‘Choice’

Four years ago, I wrote a 4,000-word essay called “The Pill at 50: Unhappy Un-Birthday,” which included this observation:

The Pill fostered a prevalence of the belief that sex without pregnancy is normal. This utterly unnatural idea is the foundation of the Contraceptive Culture.

Throughout human history, recognition of the natural connection between sex and procreation was fundamental to society’s laws, customs, attitudes and behaviors in regard to relationships between men and women. These traditions had varied from place to place, and shifted slowly from time to time, but in all times and all places, social norms had been founded on the understanding that sex and pregnancy were intrinsically linked. Indeed, from a strictly biological perspective, reproduction is the sole purpose of sex.

The Contraceptive Culture, by contrast, is based on the negation of what we may rightly call natural sexuality. . . .

You can (and certainly I wish you would) read the whole thing, because so few Americans now have any memory of life before the advent of the Contraceptive Culture, the origin, history and goals of which are generally distorted by academics and the media. For example, it is often claimed or implied that the development and promotion of oral contraceptives in the 1960s was undertaken in order to “liberate” women; in fact, this project was funded by billionaires (especially David Rockefeller) who were fanatically devoted to a eugenics-influenced vision of population control. (See Donald L. Critchlow’s excellent 2001 history, Intended Consequences: Birth Control, Abortion, and the Federal Goverment in Modern America.) The arguments that sold The Pill as a particular blessing to women — and which, by obverse correlation, portrayed pregnancy and motherhood as traumatic burdens to be avoided if at all possible — was promulgated by public-relations specialists hired by Rockefeller and other soi-disant “philanthropists” who shared his population-control agenda.

Because this history is so little known, and because the beliefs of the Contraceptive Culture have become so widely accepted, people are often shocked to be told the truth and sometimes become furiously outraged by those of us who dissent from the now-common way of thinking. Consider liberals’ insane reaction to the Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby decision, and also how they have reacted to conservatives’ responses. Here is what Rush Limbaugh said Wednesday:

We had a caller yesterday that asked me this question: “When did birth control pills become so important to the human condition the federal government requires every insurance policy to cover them?” Eye exams, dental exams, dental work are not mandated by Obamacare, but contraception is, birth control pills are. Which is worse, to go blind from lack of regular eye exams or to get pregnant? . . .

[I]n the normal, everyday flow of events, pregnancy requires action that has consequences. Yet we treat it as a great imposition that women need to be protected from. It’s a sickness, it’s a disease, it’s whatever, and there’s gotta be a pill for it. Yet they wouldn’t have the problem if they didn’t do a certain thing. It’s that simple.

Limbaugh then went on to talk about Democrats and their dishonest “War on Women” rhetoric, but what he said about pregnancy being the result of an “action that has consequences” was the lead quote in Caitlin MacNeal’s article at the liberal site Talking Points Memo, which cited Limbaugh as an example of “conservative slut-shaming.”

Trending: Will Oregon Voters Defund Abortions?

What you see is how something artificial becomes perceived as “normal” simply by being common, and how the New Normal is then taken for granted as, with the passage of time, people simply forget that it was ever any other way. Interstate highways, air conditioning, cable TV, the Internet — my kids can’t imagine life without any of those things, although these are all relatively recent developments.

The Interstate highway system began construction in the 1950s, yet as recently as the late 1970s — when I was a senior in high school — I-20 had not yet been completed between Atlanta and Birmingham. People my age (54) and older are able to remember what long-distance auto travel was like before the Interstate system existed, and we’re also able to remember when you made such trips in a car that didn’t have air-conditioning. Until the 1970s, if the motel or restaurant you stopped at had air-conditioning, this was a feature that the proprietors were certain to advertise on the marquee, along with “Color TV” (a novelty introduced in the 1960s.)

Nobody wants to go back to the days of black-and-white TV, nor is anyone proposing to ban artificial contraception. Yet the influence of the Contraceptive Culture is such that some people seem to have entirely forgotten that the biological teleos of sex — its natural and organic result, its scientific purpose — is reproduction.

After four decades of rhetoric about “choice,” and two decades of lectures about “safe sex,” younger Americans apparently assume that it is normal for sex to be sterile, and that for sex to produce its natural result (pregnancy) is something weird.

As Limbaugh said, people now think of fertility as a “sickness,” a “disease” that requires medical treatment. So deeply ingrained has this view become among some young people that a sex educator in Massachusetts found herself accused of being “unintentionally heteronormative,” which made her realize that her college students had “never thought about sex in terms of biology or reproduction”!

So here we have a court decision, brought about as a consequence of an ObamaCare mandate, which says simply that an employer may refrain from providing insurance coverage for certain types of birth control. That’s it — no one is being forbidden to purchase birth control, nor are any forms of birth control going to be outlawed by this decision. It is strictly a question of whether the federal government has the authority to mandate insurance coverage for birth control. Yet to judge from the reaction of some liberals, the Surpreme Court has unleashed the Sex Police upon us, and we are on the verge of a return to the Dark Ages, when people were expected to pay for their own birth control. It’s as if liberals believe birth control is a right guaranteed by the Constitution.

Now they’re protesting by handing out condoms in front of Hobby Lobby, defending your right to keep and bear no offspring.

First published at

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Barb Wire.

Robert Stacy McCain
Robert Stacy McCain is an award-winning journalist with more than 25 years of experience in the news business. He is a correspondent for The American Spectator, editor-in-chief at Viral Read and blogs at

Join the conversation!

We have no tolerance for comments containing violence, racism, profanity, vulgarity, doxing, or discourteous behavior. Thank you for partnering with us to maintain fruitful conversation.