Actress Scarlett Johansson on Saturday called on President Donald Trump to allow her daughter and girls across the country to grow up in a nation in which they have the same rights that his own daughter, Ivanka has been able to enjoy.
"President Trump, I did not vote for you," the award-winning star said from a stage at the women's anti-Trump march in Washington, D.C. "That said, I respect that you are our president-elect and I want to be able to support you. But first, I ask that you support me. Support my sister. Support my mother. Support my best friend. And all of our girlfriends."
Johansson then called on Trump to support the men and women at the march, and then to "support my daughter, who may actually as a result of the appointments you have made grow up in a country that is moving backwards, not forwards, and who may potentially not have the right to make choices for her body and her future that your daughter Ivanka has been privileged to have."
Her speech came during an impassioned plea to save Planned Parenthood under Trump's administration, amid calls to defund the organization for providing abortions, saying she herself has used the organization's services as a 15-year-old, after her mother had asked her if she'd seen a gynecologist after noticing changes in her body.
"When the time came for a STD and cancer screenings, no judgment, no questions asked, Planned Parenthood provided a safe place where I could be treated with gentle guidance," the actress said, noting that she was disclosing personal information she ordinarily would not share. "I may have been 15 and surprisingly self-sufficient, but I'm sure there isn't one person here who has not been helped by Planned Parenthood directly or otherwise."
Johansson said her friends all had their own stories about how the organization saved them, including one friend who said a clinic helped her decide between treatment options when she was diagnosed with precancerous signs.
"She was able to make some difficult decisions, deciding made what was right for her, to her body and her then partner without anyone else's interference," said Johansson.
She noted her own sister also used Planned Parenthood services for years after moving to California, as she had "no contacts, no health insurance, but was able to regularly see a doctor at a Planned Parenthood clinic for screenings, advice, birth control and checkups."
"For the more than 2.5 million patients a year that rely on Planned Parenthood services for cancer and STD screenings, birth control, abortion and pregnancy planning, these are uncertain and anxious times," said Johansson. "Lawmakers in 24 states have tried to block patients from access to Planned Parenthood and voted to block access to reproductive services nine times."
She said she felt a weight after Trump won, but urged the crowd not to let the weight drag them down, but to "help to get your heels stuck in."
"I pledge my relentless devotion to support women's health care initiatives," said Johansson. "I will not stop fighting to make basic women's health care available to all. I believe with every fiber of my being that the conversations that we have with our partner and our doctors about what we do with our bodies and our future should not be made fodder for any politician political agenda."
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