A Saturday Night Live sketch featured comedian Cecily Strong advocating for abortion rights while dressed as a clown named Goober.
“I know I wouldn’t be a clown on TV here today if it weren’t for the abortion I had the day before my twenty-third birthday. Clowns have been helping each other end their pregnancies since the caves. It’s gonna happen so it ought to be safe, legal and accessible.”
The comedian narrated her experience of having an abortion just before turning 23. Her story was interspersed with clown jokes such as inhaling helium, tying an animal balloon, and squirting water from a fake flower.
Goober the Clown
(who had an abortion when she was 23) pic.twitter.com/1rFv6UrPGu
— Saturday Night Live – SNL (@nbcsnl) November 7, 2021
“It’s a rough subject, so we’re gonna do fun clown stuff to make it more palatable. Wee!” Strong exclaimed, in character.
The comedian described visiting a doctor early in her pregnancy and the relief she felt when the doctor made her feel that she wasn’t an “awful person” and that her “life wasn’t over.” Strong continued, while tying an animal balloon, “clown abortion was legalized in Clown v. Wade in 1973!”
She explains how “excited and relieved” people are when they discover that their friends have also had abortions. “Wow, we kept this secret for so long despite being so grateful and happy. Honka honka!” Strong said while squeezing a small horn.
CNN’s Brian Stelter praised the performance, noting that he needed to watch it twice to “fully appreciate” it. Stelter’s article on the comedy sketch mentioned reviews of the bit, one of which hailed it as an “instant classic.”
“This skit is like if Samantha Bee and Hannah Gadsby mind-melded to create the unfunniest thing in human history. That’s how bad it is,” Ben Shapiro wrote on Twitter.
The Supreme Court heard arguments on Nov. 1 on Texas’ Heartbeat Act, which effectively bans abortions after a fetal heartbeat can be detected. The court will hear arguments on Dec. 1 in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health, a case which directly challenges Roe v. Wade.
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