Fiction Boy Sent To Learn Old Lady Girl Learn Cards Three Lessons to Be Learnt From Aletta Jacobs – A Pioneer of Access to Birth Control

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Three Lessons to Be Learnt From Aletta Jacobs – A Pioneer of Access to Birth Control

Because the suffragette celebrations are so popular, much attention is now being paid to trying to get the vote for women. This was of course only a small part of the struggle even for 1st wave feminists. Issues of women’s right to control or own their own bodies—whether birth control, family planning, abortion, or sex providers—have been on the agenda for more than 100 years—and perhaps at various points throughout history for thousands of years.

Achieving equality, where it has been achieved at all, has been a struggle for individuals, groups of women, and ultimately movements. Unfortunately, women’s rights are a matter of one step forward, two steps back. Therefore, we can never assume that all gains made will be sustained. So looking at history and the lives of specific women is one way to fortify ourselves for the struggles we must participate in.

Aletta Jacobs, the first female doctor in Holland, was an activist in the peace movement as well as the women’s movement and her everyday life. Her death on August 10, 1929 is an excuse to write about her. She was a pioneer in health reform and access to birth control. But even before this point, Aletta had won. It took the Prime Minister’s personal support to gain access to higher education after gender segregation.

After receiving her degree, Jacobs immediately started free clinics for the working class, which she ran 2 mornings a week. In 1882, she went a step further and founded the first birth control clinic in the world. Her focus on prostitutes made her a double target, just as her insistence that salespeople’s working conditions required reform angered entrenched capitalism. She was clearly only interested in perpetuating whoredom.

In 1903, Aletta Jacobs left her medical practice to focus on broader women’s issues. She worked with international women’s suffrage organizations, went on a world tour (South Africa, the Middle East, India, Ceylon, the Netherlands East Indies, Burma, the Philippines, China and Japan) with former IWSA President Carrie Chapman Catt, who is studying. status of women and reporting for a Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf. Dutch women’s suffrage was obtained in 1919.

Jacob’s energy wasn’t just focused on women. In 1914, at the outbreak of World War I, she used her international network of women to fight for peace, and she even traveled to the United States to convince President Woodrow Wilson to mediate the conflict. She remained an activist until her death in 1929.

So what can we learn from this.

1. Education is important. There is currently an international movement gathering 16-year-old Afghan Malala Yousafzai to ensure access to education for all children around the world. Malala has survived terrorist attacks aimed at silencing her insistence that women and girls, as well as boys and men, have the right to education.

The second thing is that formal education provides tools for critical analysis. If you’ve never thought of birth control as a woman’s control over her body, it’s time to rethink that. In the West, we see autonomy as an essential right—in fact, a precursor to rights. But autonomy assumes that our bodies are our own. If we want to be reckless, we can. If we want to exercise, we can. If we want to carry a child, we can. If we do not want to carry a child, we also have the right to make such a decision. But without access to birth control and abortion, it makes no sense to say we have rights.

2. A commitment to social justice is important. Not only to see the conditions of others, but also to be willing to work to alleviate those conditions. I think it takes courage—at least the courage to act on your convictions. I’m a coward, but activism isn’t just about big fights or standing on the front lines. Although signing a petition may seem like a small thing, every word counts.

Another aspect is the interrelation of rights. Aletta showed that compassion has many faces and that caring for women leads to caring for men and all of humanity and the world we live in.

3. Networking is key. We cannot do anything by ourselves. Women are said to be good at networking and maintaining relationships. Aletta Jacobs did not achieve what she herself. From the beginning, she worked with others. This does two things. It makes us realize that we are not alone – that there are others who value social justice and human rights. Second, numbers carry power. Sharing the burden and increasing the effect.

My point is not to be preachy, but to suggest that we do not form a great pantheon of women, unlike us in every way. Rather, we take small steps to claim equality for ourselves and our daughters, but also to see that we can take guidance from those who have come before us.

If you’re a Harry Potter fan, you’ll know that Mad-Eye Moody had some advice that’s relevant here. He tells the young heroes that they must be “ever vigilant.” Unfortunately, there is wisdom here, not paranoia. It’s not just that we have to fight the same battles all over again in each generation. It is that we must always be wary of imposing our equality, for whenever we think there are gains, there is a slippage.

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