Contrary to Donald Trump’s frequently repeated, third-person boast that “nobody respects women more than Donald Trump,” the current president has a decades-long history of degrading women and of using his wealth and power to facilitate sexually predatory behavior. Though few believed that such a man would suddenly respect women or advance the wellbeing of women once in office, the extent to which Trump has positioned his administration to undermine women’s access to health care is nevertheless appalling.
As PFAW board member Kathleen Turner recently noted, Trump has filled the ranks of his administration with people who promote known falsehoods to justify reducing access to contraception and abortion. With these people in place, Trump and his team are working to make it possible for companies to deny birth control coverage to their employees.
Their efforts endanger the lives and wellbeing of women all across the nation, and they ignore the vast body of research showing that reproductive autonomy improves women’s lives “from access to education to workforce opportunities to mental health,” as Turner put it.
Reflecting on Trump’s escalating assault on women’s health care and the continued significance of birth control, Turner wrote in The Guardian:
As others have pointed out, it is hard to believe that we are still debating contraception in the year 2017. But since we are, it’s important that we call it like it is. Trump and his team insist that their attacks on birth control are about protecting religious freedom, but they are really about one thing: controlling women’s bodies and women’s futures.
Birth control has helped generations of women to be in the driver’s seat of our own lives – and the relentless Republican attempts to undermine access to it show just how powerful, and how necessary, it remains.