The History of the Birth Control Pill (feat. Amber Tamblyn) – Drunk History

– Hello. I’m Alison Rich,
and today… we’ll be talking
about the birth… of birth control. – Cheers!– So, Margaret Sanger
was a woman,
who at 19,
her mother died
from complications
from pregnancies.
She’d been pregnanteight… teen… times. – No. – Yes. I’ve been pregnant
zero times, and I’m stressed out
just thinking… about her.So, Margaret moved
to New York,
and was like
I’m gonna be a nurse
for low-income women in…♪ New York City ♪And one of the patients
she observed
was this woman
Sadie Sachs.
Sadie Sachs was a woman
who had had three children,
and her doctor was like,if you have another kid,
you’re gonna…
you know…die.And, like, your husband
should sleep on the roof.
And she’s like,
okay, cool.
[giggles] – What’s so funny? – It’s really hard… but I’m committed. So, a couple of months later
someone comes up to Margaret,and they’re like,
hey, here’s the update:
she died
from a self-induced abortion.
And Margaret’s like,
[bleep]?This is horrible.There has to be
a better way.
There must be…something like a
pill that you can take
that’s as easy as an Aspirin,you know, that your doctor
can prescribe to you
that could control…birth.So, Margaret was like,
you know what.
It’s helpful to be a nurse,
but it’s not helpful enough.
So,in 1916, Margaret Sanger
and her sister, Ethel Byrne,
founded the Brownsville clinic
in Brooklyn, New York! And, um…in the first ten days,
450 ladies showed up.
Margaret’s like,
hey, here’s pamphlets
on what every woman
should know–
[burps]God, I love to burp.– [laughs]– I’ve been drinking vodka… and cranberry juice
like a real college freshman. [groans]So, it’s only a matter
of time
before the New York
Police Department’s vice squad
shows up and goes,
We’re shutting this down!Ladies are getting information
about their–
how their own bodies work.We don’t like it.And Margaret’s like,
it doesn’t even matter.
My message of birth control
is already out there.
She wasn’t going to
get stopped.
So, they end up
getting arrested. – [laughs] – Oh, I feel like I’m
so useless. – You’re not.
– Okay.So she’s giving a speech at
this women’s suffrage event,
and she’s like,if we do not have control
over our bodies,
then we have nothing.People think of sex
as this, like,
weird thing that we’re not
supposed to talk about,
but sex is as basic
to the human experience
as eating and pooping,and those are two things
that I love so much.
If I get an email
from you, half the time
I am on my toilet. I love to take my laptop
into the bathroom. – [chuckles] – So this rich lady, Katherine
McCormick was like…Hey, Margaret Sanger.
What’s up?
I would like to…give you, not only my time,
but my dollar bills.
So, she was like,I’m gonna drop the accent
for a second,
you know,
’cause it’s exhausting.
[laughs] So, she’s like,
I want to help youopen up a new clinic.I’m gonna tell people
I’m going to Europe
for fashion reasons,
but, really, it’s for…
birth control.
[gasps]So, she goes to Europe,and orchestrated this insane
fashion spy mission.
So all of these diaphragms
get sewn into dresses.
She comes back
to the U.S.
with a year’s supply worth
of diaphragms.
And they’re like,whoo. We’re reopening
our birth control clinic.
We’re calling it the “American
Birth Control League.”
Which, by 1942, was called
Planned Parenthood.
– That’s huge. – It’s huge!And Margaret’s like,
what a victory!
But at the same time,
this isn’t good enough.
So, for decades,
Margaret had this vision of some kind of pill…And finally, she seeks
out Gregory Pincus,
who was kicked
out of Harvard
for doing in vitro
fertilization on rabbits,
and he’s like,
bloop, bloop, bloop,
I’m in my basement.And Margaret’s like,
I need to help you.
You need to help me.Do the opposite
of what you’re doing
but for human women
and not animal rabbits.
[giggles]And she’s like, she’s going
to give us 40 grand
for you to figure this out.And Greg Pincus is like,
you had me at $40,000.
[both laugh] It’s a “Sound of Music”
reference. “Baby…
you had me at–” – I don’t know that. – “Hello.” That’s a classic line
from “Sound of Music” where Maria… goes, “You had me
at hello,” as in– – No. That’s “Jerry Maguire.” [sings]
“Hello… Ada-adear-adama-Jerry Maguire.” – No. Jerry Maguire… [laughs]
is… “You complete me.”[squeals]– And, “You had me
at hello.”
– She says both? – Yeah.– Cool.
– [laughs]
Then, in 1952, Greg Pincus
is like,
trying to invent this pill,
when he comes across
his old Harvard colleague,
John Rock.Greg Pincus is like,
I’m trying to make
this pill happen.And John Rock was like,
here’s a hot tip:
use this little hormone
“progesterone.”It shuts down their ovulationmeaning eggs
aren’t coming out.
Greg Pincus is like,
that’s what I’m talking about.
[both laughing]
And in 1957,
They create the pill.So, in the first year,
500,000 women
get the pill.It was hugely successful.Then by 1960, it was
officially on the market
as a form
of contraception.
The development
of the birth control… pill is the single most
important developmentin women’s liberation.
– Wow.
– Women were like,we can go to college.We can join the work force.We can experience
the sexual revolution.
It’s really important!I don’t know.
Women just… You kind of have to think
that you’re going to be superhero who… [sighs] accomplishes
your career aspirations without any bumps
along the way and also pops
out a couple of kids on the way. Whereas, men can… you know, sort of… They have more time, and it feels… unfair.
[sniffles] – It’s true. – P.S. Margaret Sanger
was a eugenicist, but… not everybody is perfect. Martin Luther King Jr… had affairs.

Comments 100

  • Does this storyteller actually BELIEVE this crap about racist nazi Margaret Sanger?

  • The end was funny AF!

  • LMAO God damn!!! Lot of triggered white dudes chilling in the comment section today. Its comedy central show relax. Women showing pride aint a threat to your lively hood I promise ( AND YES I KNOW THE REAL STORY BEHIND IT BUT THATS SCIENCE. THE SHIT RARELY STARTS FROM AN ETHICAL PLACE).

  • This whole comment section forgot that this is a comedy show, not a full fledged history show. Jesus y’all ruin everything.

  • They cut that ending off pretty quick did they. It wouldn't have hurt one bit for them to tell the truth. I mean it is what it is.

  • I immediately wanted to come to the comments to talk about how racist Margaret Sanger was. So glad so many others did too. Fuck you Comedy Central for white washing this bullshit

  • I was very surprised that anyone would ever tell a story Praising Margaret Sanger. Put her in the club with the monster that Mother Theresa was. Also lumping being unfaithful and being A eugenicists maybe the worst False Equivalence Ever made. She is drunk though

  • Allison Rich as myself on a sober happy day.

  • Correct me if im wrong ….. But didn't they target Black neighborhoods and you know …. were hella racist???

  • I think this has succeeded in making people look up the whole story and actually learn about the people involved. Well done.

  • Uhh sorry MLK have affairs is NOT the same thing as using women of color to experiment on and having the idealology that people of color are subhuman and should ultimately be exterminated from the human race…. but go off. Guess its pretty easy to ignore that side of it as white people, but we need to do better and tell the whole story. Women of color were widely excluded from the suffragettes movement. So it's not as cute with less happy crying for those minority groups who were affected

  • Apprently, Pimento used to be an undercover Doc.

  • Lol killing black babies isn't a big deal apparently

  • Uhm what. Affairs do not equal forced starilization, experimentation on people of color, and eugenics. White supremacists are not inspirational, no matter how much something they did positively impacted the world.

  • Yeah, it's totally unfair that only women can have children…

  • Her last comment about women running out of time and men not having to deal with that= EXACTLY !!

  • Margaret Sanger isn't a positive role model. She and planned Parenthood organization where in with eugenics and population control that sterilized non-white people for white supremacists Nazi remnants.

  • And what they don't mention is that Margaret Sanger was actually in support of eugenics and was talking with the kkk.

  • Do these people not know that Margaret Sanger was a Eugenicist.

  • This is the dumbest show on television. Why would anyone watch this garbage?

  • Puerto Rican women don’t matter. This woman was a hero

  • Her crying made me cry. I felt it.

  • All the the things left out of this is the reason I can't stand white feminists.

  • I like how those cute white tears wash away the horrors of eugenics.

  • I cant believe I never seen this beautiful creature named Amber

  • 2:04 dude's lip sync was perfect. Lol

  • Stoned history

  • Wouldn't it have been simpler to replace the ding-dongs with wind-chimes?

  • Yeaaah! This story is problematic…to say the least.

  • Omg yes bc nobody was using condoms so women were gettin pregnant left and right .. omg that poor women 18 babies omg

  • Y’all sounding off in the comments like all of their episodes are accurate lmfao

  • Mid sentence: “Hahaha, it’s really hard. But I’m committed.”

    That’s so me when I’m drunk and trying to function 😂

  • I only clicked for that dude in the thumbnail.

  • Anyone else ask there Australian accented Siri “what’s a Eugenicist?” And say “oh my god” right afterward

  • Everyone is saying stuff like "eugenics being compared to affairs" not to mention… THEY'RE DRUNK. Ps I'm pro life.

  • Ya having affairs isn't the same as testing and killing other races, because you're racist….just saying.

  • Dang I didn’t know the test thing but they have that on the Planned Parenthood website. We should have a Puerto Rican Drunk History edition. This is the most I’ve learned about “them” (unless you consider yourself American, then I mean the other region of us)!

  • Seriously missed the mark with this one Drunk History. This is drunk history written and told by the great revisionist Donald Trump

  • This did not spend nearly enough time on the connection to eugenics or the horrific medical testing done on PoC. The pill is obviously an amazing tool to empower women, but (literally) white-washing the history means we forget.

  • Hey dummies it’s drunk history not history fuck off

  • They forgot the part where she’s a eugenicist

  • She said MLK Jr had affairs and now I’m thinking about MLK jr in a sexual way and why am I like this

  • Yes, Margerat Sanger was a Eugenicist racist, but so what? MLK had affairs!
    Leave it to white feminism and their white tears.

  • The US government lowkey experimented birth control methods on women in prison promising reduced sentences. Many were sterilized

    They also experimented on black women in poor communities. My grandmother has ton of stories. They fucked up their fertility and killed their babies. It was Operatiom Depopulation on the black community.

  • So glad to see how woke these comments are.

    The Pill is literally the trashist ass invention by MEN made for the pleasures of MEN with MEN in mind.

    That's why it fucks women's fertility up!
    FYI I'm pro contraceptives that dont fuck up women's mind and bodies.

    So glad that there are safer, healthier contraceptives on the market now.

  • This is not the history channel. It’s Comedy Central and it’s drunks telling it lol

  • " oh I feel like I'm so useless" creepily he responds " you're not" she moves to his couch…. Birth control needed.

  • You guys didn’t add the fact that thousands of Puerto Rican was given these pills as experiment which then sterilised a lot of women in so many ways ,,,, I love the channel but please start giving actual facts

  • Shutup Becky You're drunk

  • So we're gonna compare eugenicist to having affairs?

  • Um…… Planned Parenthood was targeted toward pregnant African american women in an attempt to get rid of black people, but I don't think they want to place that in there..,,,


  • There’s a really good movie out there called the constant Gardner and it’s similar but the labs were sending the pills to countries in Africa to see what would happen to the village women … so sorry 😐

  • Me, watching: oh that’s really cool
    Me, reading the comments about how she was racist and used VERY unethical means to get the end result: fuck

  • Lol soooooo we’re just gonna skip past the fact that she equated eugenics to MLKJ’s marital affairs?

  • It's she crying 🤣🤣

  • "men have more time it's unfair"
    isn't it proven on average men die younger and are 3× more likely to take their own life? ItS UnFAiR

    just saying considering the story she's telling you'd thinks she's have a little perspective

  • This is funny but why am I crying at 5:35. Duh because women's right.

  • She was also a a huge racist and believed in forced sterilization of minorities. She was an actual evil person.

  • "i feel like im so useless"
    "ur not"
    that was 𝘸 𝘩 𝘰 𝘭 𝘦 𝘴 𝘰 𝘮 𝘦

  • So ur basically saying it's ok to be a racist because thats nothing compared to someone cheating?? Oh bitch shut up😂😂

  • I hope she was able to make a lot of money off of it and patent it as well. And how are the police going to arrest her for simply passing out information? That's protected by her constitutional rights to freedom of speech.

  • I'm here from the dictator
    PS this is too good to be true for Margaret Sanger.

  • Tell us the real story. Not this sugar coated BS. Not all woman and perfect and sweet and nice. Stop painting that picture. K thanks.

  • What about what she said about black women. Oh… ok

  • more time ….. bs

  • Eugenics and cheating are the same..?!

  • eugenicist is not the same as someone who commits adultery

  • UMMMM you forgot that planned parenthood was also founded on reducing jewish and black populations in the Americas. She was antisemitic and racist and purposely planted the first few planned parenthood in big jewish and black communities. They also experimented with the pill and abortion on vulnerable Puerto Rican women and caused many of them to become infertile without their consent. All I'm saying is there is ALOT more of info missing!

  • And your husband should sleep on the ro-of!

  • Does anyone remember that she is intoxicated? Last time I checked, most the time when people ingest mind altering substances they dont usually have a full grasp on facts, details, and such.

  • i’m not going to lie they look like brother and sister kinda 😂

  • How ignorant and deplorable are you Kirsten Dunst? How uneducated and wicked are you to compare a ‘eugenicist’ with an adulterer? Grow a brain and don’t you dare blame it on the drink.

  • The fuck made y’all pick this racist ass bitch… plus that comparison of adultery to eugenics is way fucked up this bitch tried it at the end!!!🤬

  • This was sad 😢 at the end but very interesting

  • 2:20 me being sad and my friends encouraging me

  • And planned Parenthood is the biggest piece of shit organization. Hooray for dead babies! SMH.

  • Mather luther king jr had affairs
    What?! Whaaaaast?!

  • A typical "New girl" episode with Zooey Deschanel; can't help but notice it 🙂 Definitely a great show.

  • Love drunk history. I relate 😀

  • I learn so much more from the comments that the videos sometimes

  • This is why I don’t do feminism. Only white women rights matter to them. They use women of color to further their cause, but don’t care about the issues of race that impact us as much, if not more than, gender.

  • She ain't like Martin Luther King tried to sleep with my grandmother when he visited my grandfather's church they got a picture with him and everthing.

  • Guys, it's a comedy show. And they're drunk. Do you really want drunk comedians trying to explain, in depth, the nitty gritty details of this shit?

  • I like learning about history, but please don't sugar coat it like this. Brith control pills and many other reproductive experiments were in fact done on women of colour, and once the pill was available the community that was once experimented on to even allow for this pill to happen were not given access to it. And no having affairs is not the same as wanting or commercializing mistreatment of people and even killing them because they are not white.

  • You forgot the part where it was ilegally experimented on Puerto Rican women because they weren't considered humans since they spoke spanish and were treated as wild animals

  • This topic was bound to have some really bias comments so here I go. I stand by women and rights with having their own choices over their own bodies. I get it. But, so far as men go with child support and contraception. If two people come together and do the nasty. Men shouldnt be the automatic victim to having their kid take away from them in the state of Cali because as much as women have equal rights bec they had the child. I mean that's a point on their side of the ball game. But, if you are WILLING to catch the ball sort of speak, then there should be some kind of middle ground. If people consent to unprotected sex. It shouldn't be automatically the guys fault. 50-50 #fathersrightmovement

  • Who is this actor who plays scientists role plz help me

  • Everyone's forgetting about the fact 95% (and that's lowballing it) of the commenters knew nothing about this before Drunk History brought this subject to the table. So stop acting like you're some superior being because you did a quick Wikipedia search. You realize this is Drunk History on COMEDY Central and not some History/Discover channel documentary, right? Of course, they're gonna leave the dark/extremely awful parts out.

  • bruh wtf how did she just drop she was an eugenicist like that doesn't completely re- contextualises this whole story. is she ok

  • bitch talking about MLKs affairs, like affairs dont forcefully sterlize women of color?? ?? who equates that ??

  • so, she couldnt do this without the expertise of a man?

  • you forgot about the part where margaret sanger and friends tried to exterminate all black people in America. That in fact was the main plan of the planned parenthood. look into it you normie bitches.

  • Adrian pimento!!

  • Birth control pills were created by the Nazi government as a way to sterilize the populations that they considered garbage and wanted dead. They figured that if you could sterilize the women, it would be a lot easier than having to kill everyone of them. However, the scientists who developed the hormonal pill found that the pill only works to sterilize a women while they are actively taking the ‘medication’ and would not be effective long term. This ‘medication’ was later adapted as a form of population control that was pushed by the eugenist Margaret Sanger to eradicate the black community. Women were told that in order to have a life and be successful, babies and family life were not the way and would eliminate your chances of success and happiness. The very first individuals who worked alongside Sanger to push the birth control pill and abortion have actively worked to undo the horrific things they have done and said to persuade women against a human path and down one of hatred and selfishness to their own detriment. But this is Comedy Central so why tell people the unsettling truth, and that the hormones in the pill are the same ones used in cattle and pigs to fatten them up. Cause that’s not funny. 🤷🏽‍♀️🤷🏽‍♀️

  • Y’ALL, THE NAZIS MADE THIS SHIT. They developed it first, not anyone else. It may have been tested later on other races, however, it began with the Nazis attempting to sterilize the Jews. Though they found it worked only while the pill was re-administered routinely.

  • Oh, thank you for using the word eugenicist and making me google it. She was not only that but also kind of the devil for men that believed in monogamy.

  • Haha I'm actually suprised they said ANYTHING about Ms. Planned Parenthood and the eugenics movement, kudos. Yet another reason to love this show

  • Not only was old Margie a blatant racist, she felt children born from certain types of parents (criminals or poor) shouldn’t be allowed to live because they were genetically inclined to be exactly like their parents. She also felt that a baby born with physical or mental disabilities should not live. She was a monster. Granted birth control cane to the U.S. because of her persistence, it’s not like forms of BC were completely unheard of around the world though. Hardly revolutionary.

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