Margaret Sanger, "Secret Birth Control Clinic," 11 Dec 1923.

Source: " Birth Control to be Nation's Salvation?, The Hutchinson News, Dec. 11, 1923."


Birth Control to be Nation's Salvation?

By JOSEPHINE VAN de GRIFT

New York, Dec. 11.--

"Within ten years birth control clinics will excite no more comment than school houses; charitable institutions will largely have disappeared; and the little short word 'finis' will have been written over the tragedy of the unwanted child."

Margaret Sanger, foremost proponent of birth control, clad in a frock of black, becomingly frilled with white, a bunch of violets at her belt, thus jubilantly predicts a future based upon the successful operation of the first birth control clinic here.

For 11 months, she reveals, the clinic has been secretly operating at the headquarters of the American Birth Control League, 104 Fifth avenue, during which time it has given contraceptive information to 900 women, turned away twice as many more and answered 65,000 letters from women in all parts of the country.

Keep Within the Law

And all, she says, within the spirit and the letter of the law.

The operation of the clinic was kept secret, not because of any fear that it was illegal, explains Mrs. Sanger, but in order that the project might be given an unhampered trial.

"And its results answer conclusively," she maintains, "the claims of our opponents that the giving of contraceptive information would increase immorality, that the poor didn't want it, that others wouldn't tolerate it."

"I have no knowledge of a woman of loose morals ever applying at the clinic."

"The 900 women who were given information were all married. Of these 73 per cent wanted the information because their families were already larger than they could care for and 27 per cent needed it for health reasons."

Clinics Planned for Other Cities

Mrs. Sanger does not fear the interference of the law in her present project.

"I do not see how the legality of the clinic can be questioned," she says, "as we have followed the letter of the law in every respect."

"Already our workers are planning to open similar clinics in Chicago and Milwaukee and within a few years I expect to see them in every city and town of the United States."

"It isn't only the club women who want it. The women of the lower classes are clamoring for it, as our 65,000 pathetic, generally poorly spelled letters show."

"It has got to come, else the United States will be like China. We may not feed our surplus children to the crocodiles but disease and vice are even worse monsters."


Subject Terms:

Copyright, Margaret Sanger Project


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