Comedian Leslie Jones took time from being funny on Saturday Night Live to deliver an extended pro-abortion rant on the program's "Weekend Update" segment, while dressed as a "handmaid" from the show, "The Handmaid's Tale."
Jones, an outspoken progressive, railed against a series of laws passed last week, dramatically limiting abortion in several states. In Georgia and elsewhere, legislators passed "heartbeat bills" that ban abortion after a fetal heartbeat can be detected, at about the sixth week of pregnancy. In Alabama, legislators banned the procedure altogether, passing a law that would not just outlaw abortion, but punish those who provide them.
Jones clearly wasn't happy about the development and, dressed in a red gown and white hat, decried the new laws as a "war on women."
"You can't tell me what to do with my body!" Jones screamed, in a comedy segment somewhat lacking in comedy, before tearing open her "handmaid" dress to reveal a black tee shirt with the word "MINE" printed on it, with an arrow pointing downward, ostensibly to her uterus.
"This is how it starts," Jones yelled. "I’m out living my life, then I see on the news, a bunch of states are trying to ban abortion, and then tell me what I can and can’t do with my body.
"Next thing you know," Jones ranted, "I’m in Starbucks, and they won’t take my credit card because I’m a woman, instead of the regular reason, which is I don’t have no money on it."
That is ... quite the stretch, but Jones is, at last count, a comedian, and not schooled in how to accurately interpret policy.
She then criticized the Alabama legislature for allowing men to vote on the bill, claiming that the lineup of lawmakers who voted for the bill looks like a "casting call for a Lipitor commercial," conveniently ignoring that the bill was proposed by a woman and signed into law by a female governor. And that the basis for her ire, the Roe v. Wade decision that determined abortion could be included in the Constitution's protection of privacy in reproduction, was ratified by a lineup of male Justices.
"You can’t control women," Jones added. "When women have a choice, women have freedom."
"This really is a war on women," she continued. "If you’re a women out there, and you feel scared and confused, just know you’re not alone. There’s so many women out there that got your back."
There are, of course, many women who aren't scared and confused by laws limiting the ability of women to end their pregnancies once the baby shows definitive signs of life (or, frankly, even before). The laws in Georgia and Alabama represent some of the most dramatic challenges to abortion in recent memory, but other states are following suit. Missouri introduced its law on Friday, and this week, Louisiana's Democratic governor is expected to sign a slate of abortion restrictions into law in that state as well.
The law in Alabama, which apparently set Jones off, will go into effect in six months.