January 22, 2001. President Bush re-institutes the "Global Gag Rule*". Upon hearing this news I was deeply offended and surprised (though I knew I should not have been). Women's rights, specifically Reproductive Rights were an issue that I had been adamant about since I was old enough to understand what Roe V. Wade was. I still embody such adamance & always will.
On January 22, 2001 I was in my final year of college and immersed in the backlash of the 2000 election. I was consumed by NPR & their coverage of the latest developments from Hanging Chads to the Inaugeration. On January 22, 2001, I don't remember, but I would guess that I probably heard of Bush's actions for The Global Gag Rule alone while driving home from or to school on the Tacoma, Washington stretch of I-5. If I would have had a cell phone (I didn't back then) I probably would have called Jenny on the spot to commiserate. I'm sure I called someone the moment I got to wherever I was going, or found someone to rant to. I don't remember who or what that entailed.
What I do remember is being moved to tears. I was fearful for women around the world who would no longer be allowed to know all of their options. I was fearful of what this re-institution signaled for the years to come. I was disappointed in myself for being so naive to actually believe that Bush might actually try to be bi-partisan as he promised. I was horrified that this man was who I now called My President.
Well, we all know how the following 8 years went. The rights infringed upon over and over, the corruption, the lies. I needn't go on because that is all over now.
January 23, 2009. President Barack Obama rescinds The Global Gag Rule. I am more than elated to hear the news.
January 23, 2009. I am well into my adulthood and still consumed by NPR, this time due to our recently sworn in president and all of the exciting changes he is making. I can't wait to hear about the next one. I read about the rescinding of the Global Gag Rule online upon coming home from work. I haven't spoken to a soul about it because it is the middle of the night, so I am writing instead. But tomorrow, oh tomorrow! I cannot wait to revel in the news with like minded friends.
I am euphoric. I am hopeful. I am in near disbelief. I am excited! But above all I am so very proud to call Barack Obama OUR President.
*The Global Gag rule is the U.S. government policy first instituted by President Reagan in 1984 that prevents all NGOs who receive US Government funding from giving information about or performing abortions in other countries. It was rescinded by President Clinton in 1993, reinstituted by President Bush in 2001 and rescinded again by President Obama in 2009.