"The Daily Show" slams appalling Alabama law that appoints lawyers for fetuses

"Oh shit! That's how babies are made in Alabama!"

By Sarah Gray
Published January 16, 2015 2:56PM (EST)
 Jessica Williams            (Comedy Central)
Jessica Williams (Comedy Central)

Last night "The Daily Show's" Jessica Williams delved into a baffling Alabama law: HB 494. The law takes state funds -- funds that are scarce in the Alabama justice system -- to appoint lawyers for fetuses. You read that correctly, lawyers for the unborn.

In the segment Susan Wilson, Executive Director of the ACLU of Alabama, explains that in Alabama, teens need parental consent to get an abortion. If they cannot get that parental consent, the teenage girl can go to the courts. The judge can then appoint the unborn fetus a lawyer, and put the teenager seeking an abortion on trial -- witnesses and all.

"And then in the end, if the teen is allowed access to an abortion, the fetus lawyer can appeal and run out the clock," explained Wilson. "And if they do that, we've got a parent."

"Oh shit!" Williams responded. "That's how babies are made in Alabama."

Wilson explains that the law is not only "particularly insulting to women" -- denying a woman's right to choose -- it also takes funds away from people who need public defenders. Watch below:


Sarah Gray

Sarah Gray is an assistant editor at Salon, focusing on innovation. Follow @sarahhhgray or email sgray@salon.com.

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Abortion Alabama Fetuses Jessica Williams Jon Stewart Politics The Daily Show Video Women's Rights