ActivismPolitics

Trump Taps Anti-Feminist, Anti-Abortion, Penny Nance for Ambassador of Global Women’s Issues

By Kate Harveston

In a choice similar to putting someone who doesn’t believe in science as head of the Environmental Protection Agency, President Trump is poised to nominate an anti-transgender, anti-LGBT, anti-abortion, and opponent of women’s health to the position of Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues. Should the appointment occur, it could spell disaster for women rights not just in the US, but around the world.

Who Is Penny Nance?

Trump’s nominee, Penny Nance, is a well-known conservative activist. She is the leader of the Concerned Women Activists (CWA), an organization the Southern Poverty Law Center has labeled a hate group due to their opposition to gay rights, transgender rights and family planning initiatives.

Nance claims on the CWA website to be an expert in women’s, children’s, and cultural issues. By cultural issues, however, Nance means an unwavering commitment to a return to “traditional Biblical values,” such as an outright ban on abortion for all women, allowing the use of public funds for religious schools, and a ban on all kinds of pornography, no matter how adult and consensual in nature they may be.

The Effect of Her Appointment on Children

In addition to her call for public tax dollars to be used to fund religious schools, Nance is a huge proponent of organized prayer in all schools. In a nation as diverse as ours, where the freedom to practice the religion of your choice is a guaranteed Constitutional right, the idea of forcing all children to partake in prayer to a god they may or may not believe in violates the very spirit of the First Amendment.

Furthermore, children who do not participate in the Christian faith are sure to face ostracism should mandatory prayer in school come to pass. Those who follow Islam, Hinduism, Sikhism, or any number of other faiths with face even harsher ridicule than they often do already. And students who identify as LGBT will be publicly shamed in school and made to feel their very identity is a sin. Given that LGBT youth are already at a higher risk of suicide, forcing mandatory prayer at school may prove fatal.

The Impact to the LGBT Community

Nance has made no secret of her contempt for the LGBT community. She is a vocal opponent of marriage equality, claiming falsely that there are higher numbers of domestic violence between same sex couples. And, despite her stated opposition to abortion, Nance would move not only to ban same sex marriage, but also to deny same sex couples the right to adopt. Loving parents could be denied the right to adopt children in need of homes.

Nance also considers homosexual and transgender behavior to be against the laws of her God. She considers public displays of pride in one’s identity to be an obscenity. Given her vocal opposition to anything “pornographic,” beloved and well-attended events such as Pride may very well come under attack under her administration.

The Impact on Women and Their Health

Nowhere is the danger of Nance’s appointment seen as much so as it is on her stance on various women’s health issues. Nance is a vocal opponent of the Violence Against Women Act, claiming that it encourages divorce and disrupts the family. Apparently, the fact that three women in America are killed every day by their spouse or domestic partner doesn’t constitute a disruption in the family, under Nance’s philosophy.

Worse, Nance is a vocal opponent of abortion rights, having publicly compared abortion to the Holocaust. In her ideology, there is no legitimate reason for having an abortion, even in cases of rape or incest, and even if the mother’s life or health was in danger. Should abortion be banned outright, not only would women lose the right to privacy as to the integrity of their own body, countless more women would die in a nation that already ranks higher in maternal death rates than all other developed nations.

But despite her opposition to abortion, Nance is not a supporter of health care initiatives that allow women to obtain free birth control covered by their insurance. She denies the War on Women, and is in favor of allowing insurance companies and individual employers to deny birth control coverage to women regardless of the reason, claiming it encourages women to be loose with their morality.

Penny Nance is a right-wing, religious extremist who wishes to impose her personal morality upon the population as a whole. Should she be appointed, young girls would be taught to be ashamed of their sexuality, members of the LGBT community would be publicly shamed simply for being who they are, and countless more women would die due to complications from pregnancy that otherwise could have been prevented.

“Nance, who has a well-documented history of extreme and regressive positions on women’s rights, women’s health, and LGBT rights, is woefully unfit to serve as Ambassador-at Large for the Office of Global Women’s Issues at the Department of State.” –  International Women’s Health Coalition 

As over half the population would be adversely affected by Nance’s appointment as Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues, it is imperative for all of us to raise our voices and oppose the appointment of a prejudiced, hate-filled woman to such a critical post.

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