Opposition to Neo-Malthusianism in the Netherlands
The more provocative propaganda of the NMB in the 1890s activated the opposition against contraception that had been conspicuously silent before. Van Houten had become minister of the interior and he rewarded legal recognition to the NMB. The phrase used for this incorporation in the Netherlands is Koninklijke Goedkeuring ('Royal Approval'); the suggestion that the government approved of the aims of the NMB was widely misused in propaganda.
To fight this semblance of assent, a 'League to fight against Neo-Malthusianism' (Vereeniging tot bestrijding van het Nieuw-Malthusianisme) was formed, mainly on the initiative of members of the medical profession. As proof of the damaging effects of contraception did not come, a more religiously inspired testimony against birth control became more prominent in the fight against neo-Malthusianism. The rise of confessional political parties in the Netherlands led to a new law on public morality in 1911, which contained an article banning the open sale of and propaganda for contraceptives. Holland could claim to be a decent nation again, but the law seems to have had very little effect. Demonstrative congresses against neo-Malthusianism received much publicity.