Did you vote for Trump because he said he was pro-life?
Are you pro-life because you think that sex shouldn’t be divorced from reproduction? Do you think a man who has cheated on or has attempted to cheat on all of his wives thinks so?
Are you pro-life because you think men should take responsibility for the children they help create? Do you think a man who abdicated his responsibilities to his daughter when he grew tired of being married really cares about fatherhood?
Are you pro-life because you think that adults have a responsibility to care for children, even when doing so may be a tremendous financial, physical, or emotional burden on them? Do you think a man who cut off medical support for his nephew’s ill child, a child with cerebral palsy, in a fit of spite for his brother, thinks so?
Are you pro-life because you think sex is a useful and beautiful way of holding together human relationships that are often fragile and that children are a good motivation for adults to accept responsibility for each other? Do you think a draft dodger who boasted about fucking his way through the 1980s thinks so?
Are you pro-life because you think that children’s lives matter? Because you think abortion is murder and you’re not okay with killing children? Do you think a man who promotes the indiscriminate bombing of civilians cares about children’s lives?
Are you pro-life because you think that women should be supported during pregnancy, not exploited? Do you really think that Donald Trump hasn’t paid for at least a few abortions in his lifetime so far?
Did you notice that he never brought up the issue of abortion and only spoke about it when he couldn’t avoid the topic?
Did you notice that he said he’d like to appoint his pro-choice sister to the Supreme Court?
Did you notice that his website has never articulated a pro-life platform on his website?
Do you think that a late-in-the-game four-point plan aimed only at making abortion more difficult, not supporting women or families, is good enough?
Are you so willing to be exploited, pro-life voter?
Above, National Right to Life’s “We Vote Pro-Life” bumper sticker. Did you vote “pro-life” if you selected the candidate whose policies are most likely to increase the number of abortions performed each year?
To be clear, I only care about Donald Trump’s personal sexual history to the extent that he’s a hypocritical scumbag who thinks women should be punished for acts he gleefully commits. And I care because pro-life, pro-family voters voted for him by wide margins, and I’m pro-family and pro-life (though in ways that certainly would disappoint many pro-lifers), and I refuse to give over those words to Donald Trump.
Everything about a Donald Trump presidency points to a rise in abortion. The best way to curtail abortion is to work to prevent unwanted–which generally means unplanned–pregnancies. We know what works. It’s not punishing women. Look–jail is actually better than being responsible for a child you can’t afford because it doesn’t last for the rest of your life.
We know what doesn’t lower the incidence of abortion or build a culture that welcomes and supports pregnancy and children. It’s men who don’t understand rape or consent. It’s men who brag about sexual assault. It’s those who don’t support a range of accessible birth control for women. It’s people who undermine women’s wages. Why do women have abortions? It’s not because it’s legal. By and large, it’s because they do not want to be pregnant in the first place.
The pro-life movement has remained over decades, but it’s hope is not in another hypocritical white man who wants to punish women for making a choice that will probably, if pro-lifers were being honest about it, make their lives easier. By electing someone who has broadly offended women, young people, and people of color, pro-life voters have done far more damage to their cause than they may realize. The end of abortion isn’t in making abortion illegal or even more difficult; it’s not in Trump’s promise to make the Hyde Amendment permanent law or any of the other anti-choice measures he’s proposed. It’s in a genuinely pro-life, pro-woman, pro-child effort that recognizes the legality of the procedure (because even four new Supreme Court Justices aren’t likely to change that) and the right of women to live the lives they choose, then makes those choices possible.