John Oliver Defends a Woman’s Right to Choose in Blistering Abortion Laws Segment


Now that John Oliver is back airing new episodes on HBO Sunday nights, you can bet that some of the best comedic skewering anywhere on television is back in full force. Take for example the comedian’s segment on abortion laws last night; although on the surface it may not seem like the type of topic best meant for a late night comedy show, Oliver managed to highlight the absurdity of the status quo regarding policies of a woman’s right to choose.

“Hospital-admitting privileges and high building standards sound great,” said Oliver, noting how some of the critics of abortion cite building infrastructure as a reason to shut down the procedure in certain states, “until you realize what they actually mean. Sort of how Moondance sounds like a lovely night of romance and whimsy but really means having sex with Van Morrison, and that’s not what you signed up for.”

The segment itself examined many angles of the ongoing debate on abortion laws, including the law makers in various states who have worked tirelessly to shut down clinics by citing questionable rationales. John Oliver showed footage from one such clinic in Texas that was forced to shut down for not having hallways that were wide enough, despite the fact that only a slim minority of abortions require the level of procedure of major medical surgeries.

Oliver presented footage of one doctor, Dr. Willie Parker, whose hand is forced to present what he considers to be false information to his patients before the abortion process. Though, as the clip reveals, Dr. Parker has found ways to circumvent that law to benefit true transparency for his patients:

The final thing that I have to tell you that I don’t agree with but I have to tell you anyway is that having an abortion increases your risk for breast cancer. There is not a shred of scientific evidence to prove that… they can require me to tell you the first part, but they can’t stop me from giving you my best medical opinion and that is that there is no increased risk for breast cancer from an abortion.

“Abortion cannot just be theoretically legal, it has to be literally accessible,” opined Oliver to cheers from the crowd.

Watch the above segment video from the Last Week Tonight YouTube page.
[image via screengrab]

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