The backlash to Alabama’s abortion ban has been strong. This is what some of America’s most high-profile women have to say about it.
The world cannot quite get its head around what’s just happened in Alabama.
To recap: 25 white men – all Republican members of the Alabama senate – have voted to criminalise abortion at any stage of pregnancy, even if that pregnancy was the consequence of rape or incest. Under the terms of the bill, which is yet to come into effect, abortion will only be permissible in Alabama if continuing with a pregnancy poses a serious threat to a woman’s health.
What’s more worrying, is that this is only the latest in a string of attacks on women’s reproductive freedom in America, as four states have successfully banned abortion after six weeks of pregnancy. Also, we mustn’t forget that here in the UK abortion is still illegal in Northern Ireland.
The backlash has been strong, with high-profile female figures using their platforms to send the message that none of this is not OK.
Lady Gaga is the latest star to share her position on the news, writing: “It is an outrage to ban abortion in Alabama, period, and all the more heinous that it excludes those who have been raped or are experiencing incest, non-consensual or not.
“So there’s a higher penalty for doctors who perform these operations than for most rapists? This is a travesty, and I pray for all these women and young girls who suffer at the hands of this system.”
Reese Witherspoon has also shared: “I’m beyond upset about the passing of new abortion bans in Alabama, Kentucky, Mississippi, Georgia, and Ohio. This is Unconstitutional and Abhorrent. We cannot tolerate this attack on women’s fundamental rights.”
And Courtney Cox, who is from Alabama, wrote: “I love Alabama and I am proud to call it my home. But today I am appalled and scared. We CANNOT go backwards! Please help fight this ban by donating to @yellowfund!”
Earlier this week, Jameela Jamil responded to Georgia’s recent abortion ban by sharing details of her own abortion, saying she wasn’t ready emotionally, financially or psychologically, adding: “It was the best decision I have ever made.”
She continued: “This anti-abortion law in Georgia is so upsetting, inhumane, and blatantly demonstrative of a hatred of women, a disregard for our rights, bodies, mental health, and essentially a punishment for rape victims, forcing to carry the baby of their rapist.”
Some of Hollywood’s biggest names also took a stand earlier this week, by signing an open letter against Georgia’s bill.
Led by Alyssa Milano, who penned an emotional opinion piece for Deadline on the subject, the movement has received support from Amy Schumer, Alec Baldwin, Gabrielle Union, Mandy Moore, Mark Hamill, Ben Stiller, Sarah Silverman, Christina Applegate, Sean Penn, Patton Oswalt, Uzo Aduba, Seth Green, Ashley Judd, Amber Tamblyn and Don Cheadle, who is a key part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe in his role as superhero War Machine in the Iron Man franchise.