There is this meme going around at the moment after Hillary Clinton’s pneumonia-induced wobble at the 9/11 memorial, and the ensuing tsunami of right-wing tweet-vomit, that this is the first time that Republicans care about a woman’s health.
And I get that it is a joke, but I think it is worth making it abundantly clear that the Republicans’ war on women’s health is not aimed at all women – it is aimed at POOR women. Those who can afford healthcare have always been abundantly well taken care of.
All the anti-abortion legislation you can think of consistently targets women who do not have the resources to just go to a compliant OBGYN and get what they need.
The Hyde amendment, a usually bipartisan compromise that prohibits taxpayer money being used to “fund” abortions, has the practical impact of denying a legally protected health service to women that require taxpayer assistance in undergoing this medical procedure.
Planned Parenthood, the deer that just won’t die after being driven over repeatedly by Republican trucks, is all about making women’s healthcare services more affordable. Obamacare (well, the idea of it at least) allows more and poorer women to get health insurance.
While the media and Democrats have branded these laws (or resistance to them) as being anti-woman (which they are), they are also anti-poor. In fact, to be fair, American healthcare is so incredibly expensive, they are also anti-middle-class. Trap laws and mandatory waiting periods are solely in existence to drive up the cost of abortions so poorer women can’t afford them. The crusade against Planed Parenthood might be wrapped up in the abortion fight, but it is a massive service provider that can keep costs in check due to its sheer size, and Republicans want it done away with.
The well-off have had great healthcare for a long time, and Republicans have looked after the people who can afford it; this isn’t the first time that they have cared about a woman’s health.
The real change, however, will be when they begin giving a shit about women who can’t afford the healthcare that this nation thinks they don’t have a right to.