Trump’s executive orders miss the mark
The President's new executive orders are not only misguided, but ineffective at accomplishing their goals.
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After the tumultuous election cycle and a vast array of promises made during Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, President Trump is using his first days in office to issue executive orders on some key issues. Contrary to what many skeptics believed, Trump followed through on his promises of more pipelines and restricted access to abortion. Unfortunately for Americans, these executive orders are disastrous and will only lead to more dependence on oil and more unsafe abortions abroad.
The first order allowed for the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline, which was stopped after mass outrage and concern for the environment. Additionally, this executive order allows the continuation of the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline, which is currently at a halt due to concerns about polluting the Missouri River and the water of millions of Americans.
President Barack Obama originally struck down the Keystone XL pipeline after discovering the threat it poses to the environment and the safety of surrounding communities due to a high risk of leaks. Secretary of State John Kerry also struck it down after having determined that the pipeline would not help to create American jobs, would not make America more energy-independent, lower gas prices, nor benefit the American economy in any meaningful way.
The American people also recognized the threat of the pipeline as thousands of people took to the streets to protest the pipeline. In addition, many organizations such as the Natural Resources Defense Council spoke out against the pipeline as well as the destructive impact that fossil fuels have to our environment. The thing that made the Keystone pipeline so atrocious to environmental activists is the fact that it encouraged further mining of the Canadian tar sands. The method of extracting oil from these sands is one of the most hazardous open pit mining operations ever. The continuation of the Keystone pipeline only means more pollution and more dependence on the fossil fuel industry.
The Dakota Access pipeline is scheduled to be built near the land of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe. Trump’s actions show that he is willing to ignore millions of Americans and the scientific community who demand that we reduce our dependence on fossil fuels. Trump’s actions show that he’s more concerned about the short-term profits of big oil companies than the future of our planet.
The second executive order reinstated legislation known as the Global Gag Rule, which was originally passed by Ronald Reagan in 1984, then later repealed by Bill Clinton, and passed again by George W. Bush, and repealed again by Barack Obama. This law was originally aimed at preventing abortion in foreign countries by incentivizing them to outlaw abortion by threatening to revoke foreign aid.
However, each time this law has been put into effect, we have seen a halt to contraceptives being delivered to developing countries. This causes more unwanted pregnancies and, as a result, causes more abortions. Most people believe that making abortion illegal stops abortion, but studies show that abortion rates remain the same, if not slightly increased, when abortion is outlawed. The slight increase in abortion can be attributed to a lack of access to contraceptives.
This executive order does not protect life, nor does it stop abortion. All it does is turn one of the safest medical procedures in the world into a very risky operation. Additionally, a lack of contraceptives leads to high birth rates, and countries with high birth rates tend to have a difficult time developing and becoming economically independent.
I’m all for reducing the number of abortions, and so are many Americans, but studies have proven that outlawing abortion does not stop it. The most effective way to prevent abortion is by expanding access to contraceptives and ensuring that all students receive comprehensive safe sex education.
Trump needs to analyze what policies actually work in America before he signs executive orders left and right without any proof that they will benefit people because, at this point, Trump’s policies are not actually solving the problems.