Who is kidding whom?

President Donald Trump claims he is trying to “improve women’s health” by depriving them of medical advice, forcing their doctors to lie and increasing the cost of routine women’s health care all at once.

He’s back at it. If the Chinese won’t listen to him, then why not beat up on women? Forget about picking on North Korea; he wants to pick on the people who take care of the poorest and neediest women amongst us.

I’m talking, of course, about the war on Planned Parenthood: that terrible place where, for low or no fees, women can get gynecological services they desperately need; prenatal care to help them have healthy babies; and treatments for diseases and infections and a whole host of potentially life-threatening illnesses.

Shut the doors. Build new facilities next door if you want to perform an abortion. No money for that? Too bad. To heck with the Constitution. Who cares if poor women die?

Not Donald Trump. Mired in messes of his own making, Trump — the man who (according to his lovers) doesn’t even bother to use protection when sleeping around while his own wife is pregnant — thinks poor women should be denied the right to choose whether to have a child. They should even be denied basic health information that would allow them to protect themselves, to make safe choices, to save their lives.


The annual war on Planned Parenthood has absolutely nothing to do with improving women’s health. It’s all about improving Trump’s poll ratings. How hypocritical can you get? What if Stormy Daniels had gotten pregnant? Dare we even ask?

Denying Planned Parenthood Title X family-planning money has absolutely nothing to do with defunding abortions. Planned Parenthood, along with other health care organizations, is barred from using Title X funds for abortion, even if the woman (who is supposed to be the decision-maker here) has the right to choose abortion. No, this is about politics. And money.

Organizations such as Planned Parenthood must either build new and separate facilities to perform abortions (how? With what money?) or stop performing abortions altogether — not just stop performing them but stop even talking about them or referring women to the health care providers they need.

According to Hal Lawrence, the chief executive officer of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the rules the president announced last Friday represent “an egregious intrusion in the patient-provider relationship and may force physicians to omit essential, medically accurate information.”

Just for poor women, of course.

Because make no mistake: If you live in a big city and have a private doctor, you can walk into his or her office and get all the information that the Constitution gives you the right to have and make an informed decision, one that is protected by the Constitution.


But if you are poor and sick and lack a private physician, if you live in one of the many parts of America where there are virtually no clinics that provide abortion services, your costs just went through the roof and your access to health care is on its way down the toilet.

When can we stop with these stupid games that cost lives?

You would think that a man who takes so little responsibility for whether he brings children into the world would at least have the decency not to foreclose the choices of women who make the mistake of getting involved with a selfish man like him.

You would think… but Donald Trump doesn’t care what you think. He’s still fretting about Hillary Clinton’s emails and all those nasty women who almost cost him the election. Maybe next time, they will.

Susan Estritch is a syndicated columnist.

Susan Estrich

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