NBC's Primetime Emmy Award-winning "Saturday Night Live" was heavily criticized by pro-life supporters and advocates after it featured a sketch about a clown who had an abortion just this weekend. The skit featured Emmy Award-nominated actress and comedian Cecily Strong, who has been on the show since 2012.
Faithwire described the skit as a "bizarre segment," in which Strong played "Goober the Clown," a jester dressed in bright clothes who admitted to having "had an abortion when she was 23." Her appearance came about after "Weekend Update" segment co-host Colin Jost spoke about how the U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments on Texas' sweeping abortion law last week.
"Goober" then sprung up, wearing a top hat, a spinning tie and a faux flower water gun, before declaring exuberantly, "I had an abortion the day before my 23rd birthday!"
The segment then took a turn to talk about "clown abortion" concerns, as "Goober" lamented, "I wish I didn't have to do this, because the abortion I had at 23 is my personal clown business, but that's all some people in this country want to discuss all the time."
Strong, as "Goober," even spewed out some statistics, implying that one in every three women will have an abortion in her lifetime. She also lamented that such statistics were not being talked about because "they," or the authorities, "don't even know how to talk to other clowns about it!"
Strong added, "I know I wouldn't be a clown on TV here today if weren't for the abortion I had the day before my 23rd birthday."
According to the Christian Headlines, several pro-choice groups applauded Strong's performance on SNL, including Planned Parenthood Advocates of Ohio, which called her skit "so honest and powerful" on Twitter. Planned Parenthood President and CEO Alexis McGill Johnson also took to Twitter to share that their "fights for justice and freedom" are "no joke" but "make us laugh too."
Meanwhile, pro-life organization March for Life president Jeanne F. Mancini decried the performance on Twitter, saying "it isn't a laughing matter."
Taking the life of an unborn child isn’t a laughing matter. Not for the mother or the baby. https://t.co/3U2M9Lk5e7
— Jeanne F. Mancini (@jeannemfl) November 8, 2021
According to USA Today, the SNL sketch performed by Strong over the weekend was very personal to her. While she did not explicitly confirm that she had an abortion at 23 years old, she did take to her Instagram Stories on Monday to share, "I didn't tell my own wonderful and supportive mom for years and Saturday I told live TV," with three clown emojis.
The U.S. Supreme Court has been busy dealing with abortion cases, as it recently heard arguments over the Texas heartbeat bill, which prohibits abortion at six weeks, which is a critical time when most women are unaware of their pregnancy. The controversial Texas law also empowers citizens to enforce the law, allowing them to sue abortion providers or whoever is caught "aiding and abetting" abortions.
On December 1, the Supreme Court is set to hear a case about Mississippi's abortion ban after 15 weeks, a critical case that may overturn the landmark decision made in 1973's Roe v. Wade case, which legalized abortion all over America.