A Woman-splanation Of What Trump Actually Meant In His State Of The Union Address

On Tuesday night, 45 delivered his first State of the Union address. It was a long, confusing combination of standing ovations, empty statements, and inaccuracies. And yet, it was a version of this Prez we haven’t really seen during his first year in office.

This appeared to be Trump calling for unity (when we know he’s the most divisive president in history). He even managed to read from a teleprompter and refrain from the kind of coarse language we’ve come to expect from the reality star on the Access Hollywood bus or the insomniac politician with his eyeballs glued to his cable news and his fingers glued to his Twitter.

We couldn’t help but feel we’ve seen this type of behavior before… and then we realized why. He’s like every bully we’ve ever encountered, from the playground to the boardroom: Bullies take the credit but never the blame. They intimidate, undermine, and gaslight at every turn, and they hedge their bets on their audience feeling too intimidated to call them out.

As women, we’ve been dealing with this misogynist bully-in-chief for a full year now, and we’d like to help set the record straight. So, before you get duped into thinking 45 has changed his ways, we teamed up with NARAL Pro-Choice America to make sure his anti-woman presidency is crystal clear against the veneer of uplifting anecdotes and hollow promises.

TRUMP: “Less than 1 year has passed since I first stood at this podium….Each day since, we have gone forward with a clear vision and a righteous mission — to make America great again for all Americans.”

Uh… #NotALLAmericans.

TRUMP: “If there is a mountain, we climb it. If there is a frontier, we cross it. If there is a challenge, we tame it. If there is an opportunity, we seize it.”

If there is a woman’s right, we… eliminate it?

TRUMP: “Unemployment claims have hit a 45-year low. African-American unemployment stands at the lowest rate ever recorded, and Hispanic American unemployment has also reached the lowest levels in history.”

Well, first: THANKS OBAMA! But also, the day of the 2018 Women’s March, Trump attempted to take credit for lower unemployment for women.

While Trump may like you to believe millions of women marched to celebrate our economic prospects, the fact is that we marched (two years in a row) to stand up for our human rights and make clear that we reject everything he stands for.

TRUMP: “Small business confidence is at an all-time high.”

Maybe everyone’s so confident about small businesses because employers don’t have to pay for their employees’ birth control anymore?


TRUMP: “We repealed the core of disastrous Obamacare — the individual mandate is now gone.”

Eliminating the individual mandate for the ACA means that 13 million Americans stand to lose their health insurance and millions more won’t be able to afford it.


TRUMP: “This is our new American moment. There has never been a better time to start living the American Dream.”

Destiny’s Child (you know, Beyonce’s old band?) summed up the “American Dream” as well as anyone:

The shoes on my feet/I’ve bought it/The clothes I’m wearing/I’ve bought it/The rock I’m rocking/I bought it/Cause I depend on me

But it’s awfully hard to be an Independent Woman when you’re still only making pennies on the dollar, particularly if you’re a woman of color.

Hispanic women fare the worst, earning just 54 cents for every dollar non-Hispanic white men earn.


TRUMP: “We all share the same home, the same heart, the same destiny, and the same great American flag.”

Trump mentioned the American flag five more times than he mentioned women or LGBTQ+ Americans (who got zero mentions). If corporations and fetal cells are already considered people by the GOP, are flags next in line for personhood? How soon until flags are able to donate to federal candidates?

TRUMP: “…we celebrate our police, our military, and our amazing veterans as heroes who deserve our total and unwavering support.”

Women make up only about 12% of the national police force, and as such, their health issues are not always understood or respected. Female police officers are now finally starting to speak out more about the lack of support they experience while pregnant on the job.

Military health insurance provider TRICARE limits health care access for women in the armed forces stating, “If you choose to have a cesarean section instead of vaginal delivery for personal reasons, you may be responsible for some of the costs.”  Their documentation also specifically states that the service won’t provide abortions for fetal abnormalities.

TRUMP: “…we are appointing judges who will interpret the Constitution as written, including a great new Supreme Court Justice, and more circuit court judges than any new administration in the history of our country.

In his rush to stack the courts with justices who will serve lifetime terms in his image, Trump is also nominating judges with more experience blogging than actually practicing law. It’s like a real life episode of Suits — and just like Suits, Meghan Markle has left us for a place where women have more power (economically, politically, and reproductively)… and a much more appealing red-haired figurehead.

TRUMP: “All Americans deserve accountability and respect — and that is what we are giving them.”

Okay, this is getting old, but here we go: It is well documented how much Trump “respects” or “provides accountability to” women, American or otherwise. When he says “all Americans” he must really all cis, straight, white, affluent men.

TRUMP: “People who are terminally ill should not have to go from country to country to seek a cure — I want to give them a chance right here at home.”

But then again, he’s totally fine making women  in need of abortion care – sometimes in life-threatening situations – have to travel across the country to get the care they need.

TRUMP: “We can lift our citizens from welfare to work, from dependence to independence, and from poverty to prosperity.”

Poor women are disproportionately impacted by unplanned pregnancies. With Trump working to limit access to reliable birth control and legal, safe abortions, economically depressed women have little hope of being ‘lifted’ in any of the ways he mentions.

TRUMP: “…tonight, I am asking the Congress to pass legislation to help ensure American foreign-assistance dollars always serve American interests, and only go to America’s friends.”

Among these “American interests,” he means the global gag order that prevents any healthcare organization abroad that needs U.S. aid from even mentioning the word abortion, let alone provide abortion care (so a malaria clinic or disaster rescue group could lose all funding if they tell even a single patient where to find a safe abortion provider.)

TRUMP: “It was that same yearning for freedom that nearly 250 years ago gave birth to a special place called America. It was a small cluster of colonies caught between a great ocean and a vast wilderness. But it was home to an incredible people with a revolutionary idea: that they could rule themselves.”

We all know who our Founding Fathers wanted to rule, and it wasn’t just “themselves” (it was the American people.) Unfortunately to this president, “the people” means just those Americans who look and sound like him. So as long as we have to, we, ladies in the Resistance, pledge to continue Woman-splaining what this president actually means when words come out of his mouth, whether from the House Chamber or his coveted Twitter app.

 

 

Written by:

Miellyn Fitzwater Barrows @miellynb

Gwen Mesco @messily

Katie F. Ward @katiefward

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