When anesthetics were developed, it was originally condemned because monotheistic holy books said women should labor in pain to bring forth children. Then Queen Victoria of England said she was going to use ether to have her seventh or eighth child, and the clerics shut up.
That made pain relief during child birth much more acceptable, because the Queen did it.
You see more natural childbirth emphasis today by the crunch granola / all natural types of think it is better, more moral, etc. And they have that right, but it isn't right to push other women to labor in pain.
I've seen the related "breast is best" movement, trying to push all women to breastfeed from birth, to the point of telling hospitals not to give women free cans of formula and harassing new mothers who aren't interested.
Both movements are a reactionary response to more women working and using daycare, to try to go back to something more natural and instinctive to better bond with the baby. You don't see it, ironically, as much among groups where Mom stays home as you do professional women pumping breast milk at work out of guilt for not being home.