Shepherd got emotional and fought back tears while sharing her experience with abortion in an extremely intense debate.
During ‘Hot Topics’, the ladies discussed a Texas law that requires women to have a sonogram before having an abortion. The law mandates doctors to show women sonogram images, play fetal heartbeats and describe features of fetuses. Joy Behar called it “totalitarian”, but Elisabeth Hasselbeck compared it to knowing the facts about a procedure before getting a cyst removed or having kidney surgery.
“You would never go through any medical procedure like that…without looking at the scientific evidence,” Hasselbeck said. “Why you would ask for an X-ray for those things but not in this case?”
Barbara Walters disagreed. She called the move to get an abortion “a tremendous decision” that can cause “fear and guilt.” It would be “heartbreaking,” she said, for women to be forced to get a sonogram in those circumstances.
Hasselbeck countered, “What about those who argue that it’s not life, that it’s not a baby yet?”
Goldberg took issue with her argument, pointing out that some women do not want kids, while others simply cannot afford to have children. She said that women who keep their babies do not get any financial help.
As the entire panel gave their array of thoughts on the hot topic, Shepherd stayed silent with her head down and hands clasped together.
As the minutes went by, Sherri Shepherd finally piped up, asking, “Can I say something?” before launching into an emotional speech about how the process is “very difficult,” pointing out that society has a fine line between pushing poverty-stricken women to keep their kids — then turning their nose up at providing the adjacent social services to take care of them.
“We stop at the picket signs and we don’t help you past that!” she said, choking up. “I’m speaking as a girl who had a lot of abortions and I swear to God, if they had shown me a picture of the fetus… I would have put my child in a lot of situations that wouldn’t have been good because I didn’t have the mental capacity to deal with having a child.”
The deeply-religious Shepherd in 2008 told the magazine ‘Precious Times’ that during a tough time in her life, she “was sleeping with a lot of guys and had more abortions than I would like to count.”