Fort Davis, TX 1 hour ago
I am a Physician Assistant working in rural west Texas. I know that whatever we providers at private health clinics do, we cannot take up all the slack from all the women and girls who need Healthcare. They can’t get it at ER’s which are already overworked even with the ACA. AND what will happen when even more people do not have coverage thanks to greater lack of Insurance or access to preventative health care? I’ll just keep on working, but what can one provider in a small clinic do in the face of such need — which will only become greater. So much for helping the little guy!
Huntsville, Alabama 2 hours ago
For a man who thinks the WH phones are ‘beautiful,” why is the WH comments line closed?
St. Paul 3 hours ago
To compare the poverty in the US with the poverty in the world is disingenuous. It costs so little to save these women’s lives. I have been a waitress, a single mother, and live in “fly over country” and my woes are nothing compared to the woes of these women and the tragedy of being born in one of these poor countries. The greed in this country absolutely shakes me.
Cabos, Mexico 3 hours ago
My wife and I live in rural Pennsylvania – Trump country.
The Catholic church we attended has a very active “pro-life” group. They and the Bishop preached only one issue in the election. My wife and I saw it differently and could not conceive of having that issue trump the insanity we perceived in this flawed candidate.
We stopped attending. We will use some of the money we sent to the church to support women’s health in poor countries around the world.
Not sure if and when we will attend that church where there are many friends and good people. It’s painful to see spiritual and political ideas collide but sometimes you have to make tough choices.
Davitt M. Armstrong
Durango C O 4 hours ago
I am pro-life and anti-abortion. Therefore, I shall continue calls for increased funding for education, access to birth control, reproductive counselling, and support of Planned Parenthood. Furthermore, unless I am specifically asked by a friend or loved-one about my opinions pertaining to abortion, I will continue to mind my own gawddamned business, and to offer whatever support as may be requested, should any woman that I know find herself in a position to be making these extremely difficult choices. These decisions are no more my business than they are the business of that motley collection of ogly, ignorant old men.
Chevy Chase, MD 4 hours ago
I greatly enjoy Nick Kristof’s columns and appreciate his considerable passion for humanity. This column unfortunately does not reflect well on him. In lieu of this column’s histrionics and inflammatory anecdotes, I recommend you read the Kaiser Family Foundation’s description of the Mexico City Policy, which is very straightforward and devoid of emotive language (see link below). It’s very simple, actually: NGOs can continue to provide all the contraception and services that they do currently, they just need to stop promoting abortion as one of the options for pregnant women. NGOs that chose not to accept U.S. taxpayer funding are free to continue to discuss abortion options. Blaming the future deaths of African mothers on President Trump is beyond the pale and discredits Kristof. U.S. taxpayers have zero obligation to provide funding to foreign NGOs in the first place, and it’s wonderfully generous that we make millions in funding available to them. As of this week, they simply need to stop discussing abortion. If you want to blame someone for the deaths of pregnant women in Africa, perhaps look forward to their own country’s government and community, not the United States. We are not responsible for addressing all the suffering in the world, and we are not required to solve everyone else’s health issues. I’m so glad we’re able to help to the extent that we do.
Hawai’i 4 hours ago
I’m wondering how many of the people who think Trump’s order is a good thing have ever lived among people outside of their comfortable US cities (or towns).
I have. I did anthropological fieldwork in the Southwestern Pacific among people with no access to birth control. It was not rare for women (and men) to come to me asking where they could get it. It wasn’t possible. The Catholic church controlled the schools and hospitals. The colonial adminstration bowed to the wishes of the church and although in theory a woman could get help from them, in practice it was impossible.
I never saw women die in childbirth or because of attempted abortions, but I saw something just as dangerous to their society: the consequences of uncontrolled population growth in a circumscribed area. I have seen this personally (I’ve been connected with these people for more than 40 years, seeing their population more than double, but their land area and resources remaining the same). Trump’s order won’t affect them, because there are no organizations offering reproductive health services in their area. But it will affect similar populations.
Trump’s order may appear to be directed at abortion — he and his followers may think so — but it’s going to remove fertility control options for these populations, and only a person truly (perhaps willfully) ignorant of the consequences for women, and men, and children, and local environments can applaud it. It’s about so much more than abortion.
Blaine, WA 5 hours ago
If Trump really wants to reduce the national debt he could start with withdrawing the $30 billion in aid promised Netanyahu, give up that stupidly expensive wall, stop wasting taxpayers’ money on expensive investigations into non-existent voter fraud just to appease his monumental ego and appoint a Cabinet that will actually run our government agencies instead of squandering billions for their learning curve.
CA 5 hours ago
Attention anti-choice zealots: if you consider reinstatement and expansion of the Global Gag Rule to be a victory, pay attention to actual facts. This maneuver will cause MORE abortions and MORE maternal deaths worldwide. More unsafe abortions, which means more deaths of mothers and children. Existing children will be orphaned, left to starve and be exploited. Children who are raped will be forced to bear their rapists’ children, in bodies far too young to handle it, resulting in more trauma and death. Women will be forced to birth babies profoundly damaged by lack of prenatal care and diseases like Zika, in places with no help or services to care for them. This suffering and death is what you call “pro life”?
Abortion is medical care and must be safe and legal. Abortion is prevented by easy access to contraception, fact-based sex education, and social policies supporting access to health care, child care, and women’s economic participation. Since the Trump administration is targeting all those things as well, just admit this isn’t about protecting women or babies – it’s about power, hate, and control. “Pro life” – it would be a joke if it wasn’t so desperately sad.
London 5 hours ago
The photo of the all white men surrounding the president requires no caption. For all of the Republicans that contend that the war on women is manufactured, please explain why government funding of abortion and even birth control is anathema to these men, yet Republican Congressman voted decisively to subsidise Viagara for erectile disfunction through Medicare B.
Wayne, Maine 5 hours ago
The gag order is bad policy. It doesn’t work. The only way it could work is by keeping women ignorant and more resource deprived. At a base level this is an anti education, paternalistic, ineffective policy. A more angry description is that this is really about controlling sex. The linkage between bragging about grabbing women on a bus and worsened women’s health is clearer.
I thank Mr Kristof for personalizing the real world of poor pregnancy outcomes. I would like to hear from recipients or frontline providers about the day to day impact on preventive services and women’s options or decisions.
Pennsylvania 5 hours ago
Trump signed the order surrounded by 7 other men. The photograph remains a symbol of a patriarchal government clamping down on women’s rights.
Following a global protest march by millions of women and girls, a highly unpopular wealthy man known to demean women as mere objects destroys the lives of the poorest women in the world so he can please his evangelical base.
What he has done is construct a cruel barrier of access to women’s health services. Women are treated as children whose doctors cannot advise them.
Pro-Choice NARAL notes “Trump’s reinstatement of the global gag rule officially turns his anti-woman, anti-choice rhetoric into policy.”
And the Republican Party’s response to the Women’s March is that the first bill out of the gate that the House of Representatives passed under Donald Trump is a sweeping anti-abortion bill.
With a goal of rolling back the progress women have achieved since access to legal abortions was ruled to be the law of this land.
So much for gender equality and the right to determine one’s own reproductive future.
Let’s not forget Mr. 1950’s Trump also said if a woman is sexually harassed at work, she should get another job.
Sylvia B. Vogel
Ridge, NY 5 hours ago
Progress of the current women’s movement is sorely needed. Having said that, the movement should embrace ALL women – including those who are against abortion. Waving placards insisting that the government keep its hands off women’s bodies will not do anything to permanently keep the power structure at bay. Who takes charge of the entire issue of reproductive rights depends on the willingness of women – of differing views – to reason together with the goal of getting public policy to reflect their consensus as to what should be the law of the land. This will be no easy task as it will pit differing views about what is as desirable against what is actually possible in terms of legislation. Women need to stop fighting each other so that they can take ownership of this issue and be the ones to represent it politically. Who has as much right as women in this matter? As to an argument that men should have as much to say – how often do men come forward to take full responsibility for an unwanted pregnancy? Make no mistake about this: resistance to a women’s movement goes beyond the issues it addresses – it is resistance to women gaining real political power. Never has there been a more crucial time for women to seize the day.
Princeton, NJ 5 hours ago
The policy prohibits groups receiving federal funding from “actively promot[ing] abortion as a method of family planning” (Restoration of the Mexico City Policy). Groups providing health care to women in other countries have a choice: stop promoting abortion as a method of family planning, or stop receiving federal funding. Lots of women are harmed when pro-choice groups providing health care to women choose to stop receiving federal funding instead of choosing to stop promoting abortion. Why aren’t the pro-choice groups to blame for the bad consequences which result from this choice? It seems to me that the consequentialist argument cuts both ways: neither side is willing to compromise its moral principles in order to do the thing which would result in less harm to women.
Portland, OR 8 hours ago
Whenever we speak of the war on Women’s Reproductive rights and Women’s Health matters, media (everyone) must use the correct terminology for the two factions. It is not Pro Life, Anti-Abortion, and Pro Abortion. It is simply: Choice v. No Choice, or Pro Choice v. Anti Choice. Period. As described in this op-ed, this war is not exclusively focused on pregnancy termination, never has been. The terminology matters to get that point across. Akin to alt-facts v. LIES.
North Carolina 8 hours ago
Once again women have to look at a photo of their government taking action to control their bodies and their lives and see only men. Men who will never have to face the prospect of an unwanted pregnancy or dying in childbirth. Can you imagine a similar picture filled only with women enforcing a deadly law regarding men’s health?
Grosse Pointe, Michigan 8 hours ago
In the 1960s, my aunt, who already had six children, was desperate when she found herself pregnant again. Without any way out other than illegal abortion, she sought out a back-alley practitioner. Home and hemorrhaging, she took to her bed. Her husband and children were at work and school. They came home to a blood soaked bed and a dead wife and mother. Evidently, my aunt was too afraid to call for help or go to a hospital. Six children, here in the United States of America, were without a mother because of ou laws–and, when grown, their 15 children had no grandmother.
Baltimore, MD 8 hours ago
Yet Trump and the right wing Christians claim to be crusading again believers in Sharia law around the world? These right wing conservatives condemn the treatment of women in Muslim countries while the Mexico policy kills women. Trump’s election has ushered in the Christian war on women begun in the Republican National Convention in Houston in 1992. Finally, a White House and a Congress, and soon a Supreme Court, turning their dreams of total control over women into reality. Who are the American women who couldn’t see that voting for Trump would lead to this? If they don’t have respect for themselves, what about their daughters? What about other women in the world? I know the Trump men lack humanity but I wonder about the women.
Hopewell junction NY 8 hours ago
One meme I have been seeing is that American women should refraining from marching to kvetch about women’s rights because women in other countries have it worse. (It is sort of a twist on that old parental argument “You want to have something real to cry about? I’ll give you something to cry about!) We are expected to accept any problems with equality because we are no longer totally subjugated.
But the flip side of this argument is that if we really buy the spurious argument, then the right should be lining up to help women abroad. We aren’t so big on that idea either.
We criticize other nation’s and other religions for their total subjugation of women, then legislate against women’s rights based on our own religious tenets. We don’t like *their* theocratic ideas, we only like our won.
So we will keep marching, and keep calling, and keep reading idiotic memes that tell us that real people don’t march on Washington, they march off to work. But expect the people who don’t agree with the idea we don’t legislate morality to continue to see the movement as a group of shrill whiners who don’t know how good they have it, and should be home doing the laundry while simultaneously working to support their families, by taking personal responsibility for their choices, in a small government way, except of course when it comes to reproductive rights.
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