Jane Fonda confirms comment about ‘murdering’ over anti-abortion laws was a ‘obviously made in jest’
Jane Fonda has clarified that comments made on The View about “murdering” over anti-abortion laws were “obviously made in jest”.
On Friday (10 March), Fonda appeared on the US daytime talk show with her Grace and Frankie co-star Lily Tomlin.
The pair were asked about the recent overturning of Roe v Wade in the US, amid news that Walgreens are now refusing to sell abortion medication in 21 states.
Discussing ways that people could fight back against the laws, which Tomlin described as “pretty terrifically awful”, Fonda said: “Well, I’ve thought of murder” and pulled a face.
Presenter Joy Behar told viewers that the 85-year-old was joking, but the comments quickly went viral online as Republicans criticised Fonda’s comments.
In a statement shared with Fox News, Fonda clarified that the comment was a joke.
“While women’s reproductive rights are a very serious issue and extremely important to me, my comment on The View was obviously made in jest,” she said.
“My body language and tone made it clear to those in the room – and to anyone watching – that I was using hyperbole to make a point.”
She added: “Women across the country are facing real threats when it comes to our bodies, and people lose faith in our mission to protect women when others choose to focus on tangential issues and passing jokes instead of the actual problem at hand.”
During her appearance on The View, Fonda had become impassioned while describing how women wouldn’t be willing to give up their reproductive rights.
“We have experienced many decades now of having agency over our body, of being able to determine when and how many children to have,” she said.
“We know what that feels like, we know what that’s done for our lives. We’re not going back. I don’t care what the laws are. We’re not going back… It’s the truth. We’re not going to do it.
Fonda’s words were met with applause from the audience, with presenter Joy Behar asking: “Besides marching and protesting, what else do you suggest?”
When Fonda joked that she “murder” was an option, Tomlin told her friend: “Don’t say that.”
“You don’t know, they’ll pick up on that and just run with it,” Behar told Fonda. “She’s just kidding.”