Tag Archives: abortion laws
Is Sexism the Only Value the Trump Administration Holds Dear? Comments by Neil Gorsuch About Women Suggest the Answer is Yes
Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch was once vaunted as a fair, intelligent choice. That veneer is beginning to crack, thanks in part to the revelation that Gorsuch made sexist comments while teaching a law school class. It’s all part of the same trend in the Trump administration: contempt for women.
Conservatives and liberals alike have long pointed to Donald Trump’s apparent lack of values. He was pro-choice before becoming “pro-life.” He promised to “drain the swamp,” then ignored his staff’s ethical lapses. His views on gun control, the Iraq War, health care, and taxes have been nearly impossible to pin down. The only thing that seems consistent is Trump’s contempt for women. He picked a vice president who thinks women shouldn’t work outside the home. His administration backs this notion. Trump has hired significantly fewer women than previous administrations. He’s also picked a Supreme Court nominee who cannot be fair and unbiased about issues affecting women.
Consider how Neil Gorsuch’s views on women could color his rulings on choice and other issues that affect 51% of the population. Gorsuch has of course denied the statements, probably because he realizes they call into question his integrity.
Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, Neil Gorsuch, has never ruled on abortion. So what does the nominee believe about choice? He ruled in favor of Hobby Lobby in the landmark decision about access to contraceptives. His other rulings point to a staunchly conservative judge. Learn more with our Daily Kos post.
Herbal abortion and home abortion now rank among the top web searches in the sub-category of reproductive rights. That’s not because women are eager to give themselves abortions; it’s because increasingly restrictive measures, public humiliation tactics, long waiting periods, and costly requirements have all pushed women into a desperate conundrum.
A Modern Take on ‘Back Alley’ Abortions
Before Roe vs. Wade, women desperate to end pregnancies were left with few appealing choices. Some threw themselves down flights of stairs or took dangerous poisons. Others resorted to coat hanger abortions.
Today, the Internet offers a bevy of self-styled experts, herbal “healers,” and fake doctors promising the next miracle cure. Some are well-intentioned, drawing upon centuries of tribal wisdom coupled with a little knowledge of plant chemistry. Others are only interested in making a quick buck, at the expense of the lives and health of women seeking abortions.
The result is a mounting public health epidemic. According to economist Seth Stevens-Davidowitz, who analyzes trends in Google searches, women are increasingly searching for terms such as “herbal abortion” and “home abortion.” The rise in these queries was steady between 2004-2008, with a sharp increase during the great Recession. In 2011, they surged again, coinciding with a sudden increase in anti-abortion restrictions.
By 2015, 160,000 queries sought alternatives to clinic abortions. Popular topics included home remedies for abortion, herbal abortions, and abortion-inducing drugs.
Why Abortion Restrictions Only Push Desperate Women to Dangerous Choices
Anti-choice extremists imagine that regulations designed to curtail abortion will somehow convince women to have their babies—or better yet, adopt them out to Christian families. But a barrier to abortion will not change how a woman feels about the pregnancy. Nor will preventing access to abortion suddenly offer a woman the resources she needs to carry the pregnancy to term.
Women have sought abortions for as long as there have been women, and it’s only been over the past 100 or so years that men have tried to restrict this access. Because abortion is a fundamental component of women’s health, women will not easily give up control over their bodies. And that means that abortion restrictions will lead to dangerous abortions that kill women and their babies.
Abortion extremists have taken their fight to such extremes that women may now have to report any evidence of a miscarriage. Because most miscarriages occur before a woman even knows she’s pregnant, this means that laws regulating miscarriage could actually criminalize menstruation–in other words, simply experiencing something most women experience now subjects women in states such as Indiana to draconian regulations.
Enter Periods for Pence. The movement is fighting back against extremist legislation by phoning Indiana state legislators with information about their periods. After all, if Republicans think they know better than women’s doctors, shouldn’t women be able to call those same Republicans seeking information about their bodies? The result has been a protest that is both hilarious and profound. To learn more about Periods for Pence and why anti-abortion regulations could affect women who intend never to have an abortion, read ACOL’s piece about the topic here.