Just days after being sworn in as President of the United States, Donald Trump reinstated a global gag order that bans US-funded groups around the world from providing – or even talking to women about – safe abortions.
Within just a few hours, a photograph of Trump signing the order went viral on social media – surrounded by members of his administration. And, despite the fact that the bill will have a life-changing impact on women all over the world, the image has startlingly revealed that there wasn’t a single woman present when the decision was made.
“As long as you’ll live,” wrote one Twitter user, “you’ll never see a photograph of seven women signing legislation about what men can do with their reproductive organs.”
The comment – which was echoed by countless others – caught the attention of French feminist group 52 (so named because France’s population is 52% female). And, in a bid to further highlight the issue, they decided to parody the news article with a digitally-altered photograph.
Featuring a smiling Hillary Clinton, who ran against Trump in the presidential election (and secured the popular vote, despite losing to the Republican overall), the image shows her flanked by nine women as she signs an order of her own.
“It is now forbidden to ejaculate outside of procreation in the United States,” the headline reads.
Speaking about the photograph, which has since been shared thousands of times on social media, a member of the feminist group told Buzzfeed: “For centuries, it’s been men who dictate women’s bodies.
“Women are told what they should wear, what salary they’re entitled to… Trump has only just become president, and the first thing he does is take a step backward by signing this piece of legislation.”
She continued: “This picture of the president shows very well how men get to dictate the rights that women have [and] it really wound us up.
“On social media, some people pointed out the fact that no one would ever see a photograph depicting a group composed exclusively of women signing legislature over what men are allowed to do with their genitalia.
“That was our starting point. We thought, ‘Hey, why don’t we make such a picture?’”
The photograph was originally taken – sans Hillary – when Barack Obama awarded the Congressional Medal to WASPs, a group of female World War Two fighter pilots.
Meanwhile women’s rights advocates have spoken out against Trump’s global gag.
“The global gag rule has been associated with an increase in unsafe abortions and we expect that Trump’s global gag rule will cost women their lives.”
Nancy Northup, president of the US-based Centre for Reproductive Rights, added: “It is appalling to dictate to civil society groups and health care providers how they can spend their own money and force them to withhold from women critical information about and access to the full range of reproductive health care.”