I was born in 1936.
As I reflect on the course of events in my life, I have wondered what single thing has occurred that has had the most impact on our world. It is easy to choose the harnessing of the atom, the advent of the Space Age, or the creation of the computer.
These things are inherently good. It is how mankind abuses his discoveries that renders them evil.
Nuclear energy has tremendous benefits to offer. Ironically, the destructive power of Nuclear Weapons was so awesome, mankind was shocked into insuring their rigid control.
The Space Age offers unlimited potential, but we have only begun to understand what it offers.
The Digital Age has unquestionably changed the world. It extends to us unlimited value for benefit in all aspects of life, but the abuse already displayed reveals the endless chaos its misapplication can bring.
After much thought, I believe the single biggest impact on the world in my lifetime has been brought by the “Pill.”
The independence offered to women by the Pill, by the promise of control over their reproductive powers, opened the doors to realms of behavior we never anticipated. Women could now imbibe in a sexual freedom that, theretofore, was only enjoyed by men. Employment opportunities multiplied when women no longer confronted the risk of work interruptions due to pregnancy.
Feminism was born which led to the sexual revolution. Distinguishing between Feminism and the Sexual Revolution is a bit moot, but the “sexual liberty” offered by the Pill brought an inevitable upheaval of sexual norms and attitudes. The leap, for example, from whether “kissing” was proper on a first or second date, to “going to bed” on a first or second date was unbelievable. Girls began to worry that if they didn’t have sexual relations early in dating with a guy she really liked, he might think she didn’t like him.
Men on the other hand, increasingly saw this as simply opportunities to “get lucky” on dates. As women felt compelled to offer sex to get a guy, their self-esteem deteriorated, particularly if they became victims of frequent exploitation. And men increasingly lost respect for women.
As the breakdown of sexual inhibitions increased, the cultural norms could reasonably be considered as promiscuous, or hedonistic. As illicit sex increased, so did the commercialization of the sex market. Pornography, adult toys, “R” and “X” rated movies, and the coarsening of all forms of entertainment, became a reflection of the fact that sex had become a burgeoning industry.
Courtship and “engagement” became totally altered. Why get engaged? Just move in together and see “if the shoe fits.” Lasting commitments waned, along with fidelity as we knew it. Marital ties and legalities were unnecessary. Sexual relations became self-indulgent recreation rather than conjugal love. Children became a secondary part of life’s plan.
Marriage, as an institution was viewed as obsolete. The Family Unit, as the bedrock of societal structure, crumbled.
Contrary to what might be expected, unwanted pregnancies exploded rather than declined.
The explanation is really, rather simple. Promiscuity brought on by the Pill, led to “heat of the moment” sexual encounters that over-rode restraint. Teenagers are not mature planners. Raging hormones take over. The disapproving society of yesteryear no longer existed to inhibit promiscuity. Elders accepted that young people were now sexually active and are “going to do it.” Rather than imposing restraining mores on teen behavior, society threw its hands in the air and distributed condoms in our High Schools and condoned abortion, even to exclusion of parental oversight.
The results issuing from all of this, of course, are unplanned pregnancies, single mothers, abortions, dead-beat dads, sexually transmitted diseases and psychological trauma. The illegitimacy rate among all Races exploded. Illegitimate births among Blacks now exceeds legitimate births. White and Hispanic illegitimacy rates are not far behind.
Since Roe v Wade, over 60 million babies have been aborted in America. Those numbers exceed the populations of many European Nations, like Spain and Italy. The loss of that much humanity and all its potential is incalculable.
The family breakdown, resulting in fatherless, unguided, undisciplined children on the streets, borders on catastrophic. Drugs are rampant on our streets leading to addiction and violent crime.
As these wayward children age, they become the homeless population that is now a scourge in our major cities. The cost to government and taxpayers in welfare, crime prevention, incarceration, and rehabilitation is now in the Billions of dollars, annually. Where will it end?
The hedonistic society we have created, can all be traced back to the Pill. The Pill removed the guard-rails of traditional sexual morality, inviting the perversion and degradation that is destroying a great nation like nuclear power or digital games could never do.
There is little socially redeeming value in the Pill. It has done nothing but pervert the natural God given gift of conjugal love by which mankind has increased and multiplied since the beginning of time.
The views expressed in this post are those of the author.