Abort Trump’s polices, not foreign aid


Charlotte Cooper/CC by 2.0

Under the Obama administration, women gained reproductive rights all over America. However, under the Trump administration, women’s rights are already being limited, starting with women outside of the U.S.

Leea Ivanel, Staff Writer

In the past week, President Trump has signed a flurry of vague, alarming executive orders turning back the clock on Obama’s eight years of work, from “lessening the burden of Obamacare” to removing the United States from the Trans-Pacific Partnership, and to implementing a ban on seven Muslim-majority countries.

Amidst mass protests and public outcry, however, one act is being forgotten. Trump also signed an executive order bringing back the “Global Gag Rule,” a policy implemented under the Reagan administration in 2001, which states that the U.S. will not give foreign aid to any organization which provides or “promotes” abortions.

This policy is nothing but an attack on women from all over the world.

The reasoning behind this policy is the same as the reasoning behind the “defund Planned Parenthood” movement which Trump and his Vice President Mike Pence support — abortion is wrong under all circumstances, essentially sending the message that the government has more right over a woman’s body than she does.

What Trump fails to realize about Planned Parenthood is that it does much more than just provide safe abortions for women — it also offers cancer screening, STD testing and treatment, pregnancy tests, and parental services — and that defunding it will eliminate all of those benefits, not just the three percent of their services which do involve abortions; just as he fails to realize that no longer funding non-governmental organizations which “promote” abortion means no longer funding a lot more than just abortions.

An example of an organization which the U.S. will no longer be funding is the United Nations Population Fund (UNPF), the world’s largest international source of population and reproductive health programs. Since they started working in 1969 the number of women dying from complications during pregnancy or childbirth has been cut down by half. Along with that, the UNPF also works in providing professional pregnancy care and stopping child marriages.

Trump, however, does not care about that. All he cares about is the fact that the UNPF performs safe and responsible abortions on women so that they will not have to harm themselves with unprofessional abortions or give birth to unwanted children in poverty. Apparently, to Trump saving the lives of women and making them more comfortable is not “pro-life,” but letting them be harmed and even die is.

To me, this new executive order is outrageous and it speaks to how women in the 21st century are still not considered equals to men, even in a country like America; we still aren’t seen as being smart enough to make choices about our own bodies.

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And now, Trump wants to spread that message and its impact worldwide.

Despite nearly 5 million people marching all over the world in the Women’s March on Trump’s first day in office, it is clear that our rights are not a priority, and that our voices and needs are nothing more than background noise heard from his seat within the Oval Office.

Because of that, we cannot let this executive order be forgotten and lost in the sea of chaos that his other policies have caused. We cannot be silent simply because we know he will not listen. If anything, we will just have to raise our voices louder.