All you can do is increase the rate of life-threatening unsafe abortions.
If I had a dollar for every time I heard a Trump supporter claim their President of choice wasn’t really going to do something he explicitly promised to do, I could retire by now.
It was a bizarre belief system to be sure – these people seemed to want to vote for a man they didn’t trust. Presumably most of us vote for candidates because we want them to follow through on their promises; Trump supporters, it seems, were banking on him being mostly useless. Unfortunately for all of us, they were wrong.
In his first five days in office, he signed 10 executive orders, moved forward on his promise to build a wall between America and Mexico with Americans footing the bill, and recently reinstated a rule blocking all US aid to any foreign group that perform or discuss abortions.
It’s no secret that Trump’s cabinet is full of rich, conservative white men who care far more about controlling who women have sex with than actual children or lives. He’s riding their conservative coattails, happy to sign whatever he needs to sign that will feed both his ego and bank account. As a queer woman I’ve been afraid of him since his nomination for exactly these reasons, and these reasons are what makes him so terrifying. He isn’t interested in listening to the American people. He doesn’t care what we have to say unless it’s what he wants to hear.
If Mr Trump would listen, I’d tell him that taking strides towards dismantling Roe v. Wade and banning abortion doesn’t actually accomplish that thing. All banning abortions does is increase the odds that people will die as a result of unsafe abortions. Contrary to a bizarrely popular belief, abortion isn’t used as a last-ditch contraceptive effort.
Someone doesn’t decide to pop by and have a quick abortion on their way to the nail salon. It’s a painful choice to have to make and an incredibly invasive and uncomfortable procedure, made all the more traumatic by crowds of protestors all keen on ensuring women feel awful for the decision they’ve gone through hell to make in the first place. “Put your child up for adoption!” scream the ignorant crowd who haven’t adopted a single child in their lives.
If Mr Trump would listen, I’d tell him that banning abortions is going to cost the government more money in the long run, rather than less. Treatment for infections, fatal breakages or irreparable harm done to the bodies of these people who have had to resort to unsafe abortions will be in high demand.
I’d implore Mr Trump to think of women as living, thinking human beings. To learn that these decisions aren’t being made simply because we’re lazy, hormonal, or any of the other offensive presumptions he’s made about our sex. To stop thinking of women as a target population or minority group to control. And none of this is to say anything about the difficulties trans folks who get pregnant over the next four years are going to face.
If he would listen, I would tell Mr Trump something he’s bragged about frequently and should know well – sex isn’t a shameful, sinful thing. Sex doesn’t deserve punishment. Pregnancy isn’t the inevitable consequence of sex, it’s a possible result. A child should never be forced on one to punish them for having sex at a time and in a place and with a person a group of strangers disapproves of.
But he won’t listen. It’s already starting. In December, Ohio passed a bill banning abortions as early on as six weeks. For the record, most people aren’t even aware of the fact they’re pregnant until after six weeks has passed. They miss a period and wait a bit to see if it’s late, then go in and find out they’re pregnant after that time frame has passed. It’s as good as banning abortion entirely.
That’s the direction this country is moving in. We’re slowly having our rights taken from us. And if you’re overjoyed by the thought that people who aren’t like you are going to be legally forced into either becoming like you, being deported, arrested, or killed, I have some very bad news for you: sooner or later something about you will be made illegal by the Trump administration. You’ll have your health care access taken away, your taxes will rise, or a portion of your life will be suddenly made criminal. And there will be no one left to help you.
Image via tumblr.com.
Comment: Where do you stand on the Trump Administration’s new abortion gag order?