7 Unbelievable Things Women Couldn't Do In The 1960's

These will blow your mind....

1. Get a credit card
A bank could refuse to issue a credit card to an unmarried woman; even if she was married, her husband was required to cosign. It wasn't until the Equal Credit Opportunity Act of 1974 that it became illegal to refuse a credit card to a woman based on her gender.

2. Serve on a jury
It varied state to state but the overall reason women were not allowed to serve was because they were considered "primary caretakers" who shouldn't be taken from their responsibility to their homes. Women were also deemed too fragile to hear the grisly details of crimes and too sympathetic by nature to be able to remain objective about those accused of offenses. It wasn't until 1973 that women could serve on juries in all 50 states.

3. Use birth control pills
In 1957, the FDA approved of the birth control pill but only for “severe menstrual distress.” In 1960, the pill was approved for use as a contraceptive but in a lot of states it was illegal and could be prescribed only to married women for purposes of family planning.

4. Get an Ivy League education
Harvard didn't admit women until 1977. Yale and Princeton only admitted their first women undergrads in 1969. 

5. Keep their job if they were pregnant
Laying off female employees who became pregnant wasn't illegal in the US until 1978.

6. Be an astronaut
"We have no existing program concerning women astronauts nor do we contemplate any such plan," NASA told one young woman in 1962. NASA selected its first female astronaut candidates in 1979.

7. Refuse to have sex with their husband
Marital rape wasn't illegal until the 1970s. Rape was defined in all US states as follows: "a male who has sexual intercourse with a female, not his wife, is guilty of rape if..."
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