Thank you for your kind compliment and reference to my earlier posting. The sanitary shorts were made of very thin material, akin to t-shirt material, and as you have correctly said, were worn to absorb perspiration and to reduce chafing.
Many years ago, in the course of my career, I happened to have the great privilege to speak with one of the senior officers at Bike Athletic, and it was at a critical point in history as the use of jockstraps suddenly spiraled into oblivion. Until the 1980s, Bike was selling about 4 million jockstraps (both regular pouch and cup-jocks) annually. The gentleman at Bike explained that two unrelated events in society combined to create a disaster against jockstrap usage. He said that demographically, prior to the 1980s, the buying of a jockstrap was generally a rite of passage which began when the middle school would send home a list of required gear for gym class, and mothers would take the youngster to the local department store where a complete "kit" was presented. There was little embarrassment in that transaction because everything was bundled together. However, as sons grew through puberty, the buying of a jockstrap in increasingly adult sizes was relegated to a father on a Saturday morning. The gentleman at Bike explained that with the increase of divorce in the 1980s, there were more single-mother households, and in response, Bike offered the compression short as an alternative to the jockstrap because their research indicated that mothers were less squeamish about the design of the compression short. (It also segues into your precise comment about the under-current to minimize masculinity in society).
The second factor was the sudden publicizing of pedophilia, including incidents in boys' locker rooms. Within a very short time, the large "gang showers" were replaced with individual curtained shower stalls, and coaches were forbidden from many previous forms of male-to-male activity, including the ominous "jockstrap checks". Coaches stopped talking about jockstraps in order to kowtow to the political correctness of the time, and since fewer boys were mandated to take public showers, indeed to even participate in gym classes, jockstrap sales continued to plummet.
There were a series of negative articles written by journalists who had been emotionally scarred for life because of a few incidents involving jockstraps when they were in middle school, and these were well-placed at the same time that mothers were skittish against buying jockstraps and high schools were down-sizing physical education budgets.
I have urged this website's followers as well as those on "allkink" that unless and until we are able to restore the sports medicine importance that every man engaged in strenuous activity, whether in sports or in construction or working in the garden, should wear an athletic supporter to minimize scrotal fatigue and damage, then the jockstrap will remain in a small, fetish category.
To have dropped from millions of sales each year to merely tens of thousands of jockstraps in a world with about 3 billion active males is a travesty. I have often said that many of the current issues regarding erection disorder and infertility in this generation might be directly correlated to the absence of wearing a jockstrap.
There is much work to be done by all of us to help with the physical safety and long-term well-being of the next generation.
Thank you again for your kind words. I am wishing you the best of health and success.