If you haven’t heard, today is the 50th anniversary of the release in the United States of the combined oral contraceptive, a.k.a. The Pill. Social and religious conservatives have blamed The Pill for everything that has gone wrong since 1960, including but not limited to the destruction of the nuclear family, sexual wantonness, the decline of religiosity, the rise of radical Islamic terrorism, same-sex marriage and the End Of Civilization as We Know It.
The Pill was not introduced in Canada until 1969, which accounts for our generally lagging behind, especially in the Decline and Fall of Civilization bit.
On the other hand, it offered untold millions of women control over their reproduction. To my mind, this was a Good Thing. Control over fertility allowed women to become (finally) fully emancipated in Western societies — and we have been far richer for it, socially, culturally and economically.
Oh, and Happy Mother’s Day too.