In just four days following the inauguration, President Donald Trump’s feared rhetoric has shifted into a dystopian reality.
So here are the facts that you may have already knew: Unsafe abortions (ones that are performed illegally) are one of the leading causes of what the U.S. National Library of Medicine call, “Unnecessary Maternal Mortality.” Nearly 68,000 women die each year due to unsafe abortions, and with Donald Trump passing the Global Gag Rule just three days into his presidency, that number is about to increase.
The Global Gag Rule is nothing new; Ronald Reagan established it in 1984. The Gag Rule, also referred to as the Mexico City Policy, entails that any foreign organization receiving U.S. monetary aid must have no history performing, nor even discussing abortion with patients, regardless if abortion is legal in said country. The Gag Rule was repealed by President Clinton, reinstated by President Bush, and repealed again by President Obama. Engender Health, a non-profit organization active in women’s health, and sexual and reproductive health worldwide, has documented the past impacts on the Gag Rule in countries such as Nepal, Kenya, and Zambia and concluded that the Gag Rule did not reduce abortions, but led to more unwanted pregnancies while also vanishing various medical services catering to HIV and malaria patients, and even child patients.
Here are some more facts you may have already knew: The resistance against the Keystone and Dakota Access Pipelines in North Dakota, primarily led by the Standing Rock Sioux tribe has been ongoing since mid 2016. The resistance is against the construction of the $3.8 billion pipeline, which will deliver 500,000 gallons of crude per day from North Dakota to Illinois, putting natural resources and residents at risk. The already existing Keystone Pipeline would expand from Canada to the Gulf Coast of the United States, putting even more people and resources in jeopardy. Since 2010, nearly 7 million gallons of crude has spilled, damaging waters and land, according to PHMSA (Pipeline Hazardous Materials Safety Administration) most recently 840,000 gallons onto wheat fields in North Dakota in 2013.
President Donald Trump has signed executive actions to speed up the approval process to begin construction on both pipelines, undoing President Obama’s actions to block the effort. Trump has stated the construction would boost job growth. Vermont Senator, Bernie Sanders has responded in a statement, “Millions of people came together all over this country to stop the Keystone and Dakota Pipelines…Today, President Trump ignored the voices of millions and put the short-term profits of the fossil fuel industry ahead of the future of our planet.”