As the number of U.S. coronavirus cases reaches the one-million mark, Hollywood is donating star power – and collecting money – for a different cause: abortion.
Abortion should remain accessible during the pandemic, celebrities say, and the politicians who place it on hold are evil. Several of them, such as actresses Ashley Judd and Jamie Lee Curtis, are lending their voices to abortion organizations. Others, like comedian Lizz Winstead and actress Elizabeth Banks, are holding abortion fundraisers. Some, such as actress Amy Brenneman and comedian Chelsea Handler, are simply tweeting about the “b***s***” that they say is “f****** nuts.”
According to many in Hollywood, politicians are using the coronavirus to push their own agenda – something that they themselves would never do.
On April 13, House of Cards actress Elizabeth Thorp tweeted that politicians, such as Texas Governor Greg Abbott, “are exploiting the fear & urgency of #COVID19 to push their political agenda to ban abortion.” This came after Texas paused all unnecessary medical procedures, including abortion, while combatting the coronavirus.
“Abortion is time-sensitive, essential health care,” Thorp typed. “Doctors should decide what is medically necessary, not politicians.”
In agreement, actress Alyssa Milano insisted on March 24 that “Texas is using this crisis to prevent access” to abortion.
According to actress Amy Brenneman, the Trump administration was to blame. On March 31, she tweeted, “During the crisis, they are also closing abortion clinics, saying they are ‘non essential.’ IT IS F****** NUTS.”
Comedian Chelsea Handler chimed in on April 8, demanding, “Enough of this pandemic-opportunitism abortion bans b***s***. Abortion is an essential service.”
Other actresses lent their voices to abortion-promoting organizations such as NARAL Pro-Choice America and the nation’s largest abortion provider, Planned Parenthood.
That’s what actress Ashley Judd did in an April 21 tweet declaring, “We’ve always known that for anti-choice politicians, it’s never been about valuing human life. It’s about control.”
“If they valued people’s lives, they wouldn’t be denying constituents essential healthcare or telling them to put themselves in unsafe situations during a pandemic,” Judd added. “The NARAL Foundation is calling out their hypocrisy.”
In her tweet, she linked to a NARAL ad campaign that claimed to target “Anti-Choice” politicians “Putting Lives at Risk During a National Public Health Emergency.”
And on April 17, actress Jamie Lee Curtis announced she was partnering with Planned Parenthood.
“Proud to be the spokesperson of ?@PPFA? and to introduce you to their new program of Telehealth,” she typed. In a video linked in her tweet, she revealed that she was “here today on behalf of Planned Parenthood to tell you about telehealth” – or meeting with a Planned Parenthood provider online.
“It’s their way of helping you during this crisis,” she urged, before concluding, “Stay safe, wash your hands, stay home, and God bless you all.”
A vocal abortion supporter, comedian Lizz Winstead tweeted on March 21 that “Needing an abortion is time sensitive and VERY ESSENTIAL to a person who needs one.”
A few weeks later, on April 23, the Hollywood Reporter (THR) broke the news that Winstead was not only tweeting about abortion but also fundraising for it.
“Elizabeth Banks, W. Kamau Bell, Nikki Glaser, Jenny Slate, Sandra Bernhard and Margaret Cho are among the stars set to take part in an all-day fundraiser for independent abortion providers that will be hosted by Lizz Winstead,” wrote Kimberly Nordyke for THR.
The “Operation Save Abortion” fundraiser taking place on April 30 on Instagram will benefit a fund hosted by the Abortion Care Network, which represents independent abortion providers.
Winstead will have the help of Amelia Bonow, the co-founder of Shout Your Abortion, which encourages women to tell their positive abortion stories, for the event. Other big names making an appearance include Amanda Palmer, Kristin Hersh, Alysia Reiner, Donna Lynne Champlin, Ambrosia Parsley, Beth Stelling, Dana Gould, Josh Gondelman, Samantha Irby, Shannon Woodward, Greg Proops, Jessica Kirson, Krystyna Hutchinson, Lea DeLaria, Lori Alan, Lindy West, and DJ Samantha Ronson.
"As someone who has had abortions, I know that they allowed me to create a life for myself that allowed me to survive and thrive,” Winstead told THR. “Thank God for those who provide this care; it saves lives, and I will not sit back and let those who provide abortions and those who need them be alone in this fight. They need all our support. And to those of you compelled to weigh in on the health-care decisions of strangers, literally — no one asked you."
The pro-life movement feels compelled to weigh in because abortion is not a “health-care” decision – it’s the decision to end the life of one of society’s most vulnerable. All too often, media and Hollywood play into the lie that abortion is necessary for women’s success. And instead of fostering a culture that better supports women as they bear children, they point to what they see as the “easy fix”: abortion.