There is no mystery to solve: Donald Trump has been scarier for women than a Stephen King novel. From his days as a creepy New York City real estate mogul to his present-day haunting of the White House, he has proven himself to be the true Killer Clown from Outer Space (or, from Mar-a-Lago).
Since today is Halloween, we looked back at the long list of Trump’s attacks on women and found a few of the scariest, most disturbing steps he’s taken.
5. Grabbing Women by the Pussy…and Countless Other Allegations of Sexual Assault
The infamous bus conversation with Billy Bush, his creeping on Miss Teen USA pageant contestants (uhm, yuck!), grabbing Miss Universe contestants’ butts, forcing his tongue down a woman’s throat, justifying his repetitive groping of women with his fame and fortune…one incident is enough to prove he’s among the creepiest of creeps, but the list goes on.
4. Scaling Back Title IX
On September 7th, Trump’s controversial Education Secretary Betsy DeVos announced the scaling back of Title IX, an Obama-era ruling that requires “a comprehensive and robust response from schools to accusations of sexual violence.” DeVos’ issue with Title IX? “If everything is harassment, then nothing is harassment.” Not how it works, Betsy.
3. Transgender Ban in the Military
During one of his late-night fits of Tweet-mania (is it really him, or the ghost of assholes past?), Trump announced he’d be placing a ban on transgender folks serving in the U.S. military in any capacity due to the burden of “tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgender in the military would entail.” This attack further threatened the lives of trans people—especially transgender women—who experience sexual violence more often than transgender men.
Plus, it turns out the military spends five times more on Viagra than it does on transgender troops’ medical care, so…there’s that.
2. Rolling Back the Birth Control Benefit
In an effort to put further limitations on women’s autonomy, Trump expanded the rights of employers to deny coverage for contraception in instances of religious or “moral” objections. Under the new regulation, hundreds of thousands of women could lose birth control coverage, forcing them to pay for it out of pocket, or lose access altogether if it becomes unaffordable.
1. Reinstating and Expanding the Global Gag Rule
Within his first few days in office, Trump worked to get his tiny hands on restrictive policies that went beyond American borders. He both reinstated and expanded the Global Gag Rule. Whereas past impositions of the Global Gag Rule were limited to family planning aid (currently a bit over $600 million), Trump’s version affects all global health assistance—a whopping $8 billion.
The gag? Forcing clinics to sign an agreement that they won’t even mention the word abortion, let alone provide safe abortion care. If clinics don’t sign, they lose their U.S. funding, forcing many to close or limit the services they can provide. Marie Stopes International estimates an additional 21,700 maternal deaths will occur due to Trump’s Global Gag Rule.
As the plot of Trump’s presidential term continues to thicken, there’s a surefire twist in store: Women are ready to cast a few spells of their own. We will continue to stand up, fight back, and take control of our bodies, our lives, and our right to choose.