Donald Trump’s first 100 days have taken a terrible toll on women.
Perhaps his most dangerous move was the illegitimate installation of Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court, a jurist who has a record of hostility to reproductive rights and prioritizing corporate interests over access to basic health care. And Donald Trump, who campaigned on the promise to appoint Supreme Court Justices who would overturn Roe v. Wade, would surely not have made this choice if Gorsuch’s views on Roe were in any doubt.
The Trump Cabinet is a who’s who of sexism and disregard for women. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin made millions on the fraudulent reverse mortgage scheme known as “widow foreclosures,” which capitalized on a loophole that forced the elderly out of their homes upon the death of a spouse.
Trump’s Health and Human Services Secretary, the ethically challenged Tom Price, has launched a crusade to eviscerate Obamacare and remove essential health benefits such as prenatal and maternity care. Trump’s Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos lacks even the most basic understanding of Title IX, the landmark legislation that outlaws sex discrimination in educational institutions and programs that receive federal aid, and addresses sexual harassment, gender-based discrimination, and sexual violence.
The list goes on—Ben Carson, the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, is a neurosurgeon who knows little about housing policy and opposes the existing rule that requires local communities to assess segregation and try to address it. And Attorney General Jeff Sessions is an appalling throwback to the bad old days when white men did a they could to stop African Americans from exercising their right to vote. Sessions has also referred to Roe v. Wade as “one of the worst, colossally erroneous Supreme Court decisions of all time,” voted three times against the Violence Against Women Act, and opposed the 2009 Hate Crimes Bill, denouncing the inclusion of rape as a hate crime.
Trump’s Muslim ban victimizes women and children seeking refuge from persecution and violent regimes, and his draconian policies on immigration hurt immigrant women, split families apart and keep domestic violence victims from asking for help.
One of Trump’s first actions as president was to expand the “global gag rule,” which prohibits international health care providers from giving women truthful information about their reproductive choices. Trump has also slashed funding to the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), which provides lifesaving resources to millions of women and girls around the world.
From rolling back EPA regulations that limit environmental damage affecting women and children to reviving the Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines that disproportionately affect Native women and low-income women of color, and so much more, Donald Trump has been busy these past 100 days turning back the clock on women’s rights, safety and health.
The good news is that, together with our allies, NOW’s leaders and activists throughout the country have stopped Trump from doing even more damage. We will keep marching, protesting, lobbying and pushing back on Donald Trump and his destructive, anti-woman agenda. He won’t like what he hears, but he can’t silence our voices.
M.E. Ficarra , email@example.com