Was the joke distasteful? Yes.
But Dunham’s heartfelt explanation more than makes up for it.
“My latest podcast episode was meant to tell a multifaceted story about reproductive choice in America, to explain the many reasons women do or don’t choose to have children and what bodily autonomy really means. I’m so proud of the medley of voices in the episode. I truly hope a distasteful joke on my part won’t diminish the amazing work of all the women who participated. My words were spoken from a sort of “delusional girl” persona I often inhabit, a girl who careens between wisdom and ignorance (that’s what my TV show is too) and it didn’t translate. That’s my fault. I would never, ever intentionally trivialize the emotional and physical challenges of terminating a pregnancy.”
She added, “My only goal is to increase awareness and decrease stigma. I take reproductive choice in America more seriously than I take literally anything else, and therefore own full responsibility for any words I speak that don’t convey this truth clearly. I know plenty of people will never like a thing that leaves my lips, mea culpas or no, but this apology is for the women who have placed their trust in me. You mean everything to me. My life is and always will be devoted to reproductive justice and freedom.”
She also put her money where her mouth is and is making a sizable donation to to abortion funds in New York, Texas and Ohio.
The abortion joke was made while Dunham recalled visiting a Texas Planned Parenthood years back and was asked to share her experience with abortion. She was quick to say she’d never had an abortion only to realize that she too still carried a “stigma around this issue.” In overcoming the stigma she had, she commented, “Now I can say that I still haven’t had an abortion, but I wish I had.”
I think in this case, we can all forgive and forget. Dunham clearly meant no offense.
Do you think Dunham’s apology makes up for her podcast comment?
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