John Oliver hits out at Supreme Court over Roe v Wade: ‘This is a fight for people’s rights’

Oliver urged officials to ‘stop tiptoeing around the issue of abortion and take steps to properly safeguard it’

Peony Hirwani
Monday 09 May 2022 10:50
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John Oliver hits out at Supreme Court over Roe v Wade

John Oliver has hit out at Supreme Court following the news that it has reportedly voted to overturn Roe v Wade, which has kept basic abortion rights legal across the US since 1973.

In the latest episode of his topical HBO series Last Week Tonight, the 45-year-old comedian said: “This is a fight for people’s right to have control over their bodies. It’s about bodily autonomy.”

Last week, an initial draft majority opinion purportedly written by Justice Samuel Alito and circulated inside the court suggested that the Supreme Court could be poised to overturn the landmark ruling which legalised abortions nationwide.

“We hold that Roe and Casey must be overruled,” Justice Alito wrote in the document obtained by Politico, labelled as the “Opinion of the Court”.

According to the outlet, the nearly 100-pages-long draft also said: “It is time to heed the Constitution and return the issue of abortion to the people’s elected representatives.”

The decision has been strongly criticised by politicians, activists and members of the public on social media, with a number of high-profile arts figures also weighing in.

Oliver said: “Some who get abortions are survivors of rape or incest, others might need one for medical reasons, but also just to be clear, some will be seeking an abortion because they f***ing want one, and this is very much about them too.”

The political commentator then showed a video of a woman who, at six weeks and one day pregnant, was told she was not able to get an abortion in Texas.

In the clip, the woman said that she was already raising two kids by herself and wasn’t ready to have another child as her birth control had failed her.

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“Six weeks and a day, and she can’t get an abortion,” Oliver said. “For most people, that is a period that’s two weeks late, and your period can be two weeks late for any number of reasons. Maybe you’re tired of travelling or you had a change in diet or exercise, or maybe you’re just dealing with the stress of living in a misogynistic theocracy run by five of the biggest weirdos in the country.”

While saying the above, Oliver showed a photo of the five justices who reportedly were voting to overturn Roe v Wade.

He continued by urging officials to “stop tiptoeing around the issue of abortion and take steps to properly safeguard it”.

“The dream version of this would be a constitutional amendment that would support people’s fundamental rights to make personal decisions about contraception, pregnancy, marriage and family life,” he said. “But until then, we’re going to need other legislation at the state and federal level.”

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