Well, after a long and valiant struggle, satire is dead. It was nice, but now it’s gone. Well-wishes and condolences can be sent to parody, its next of kin, and irony, a close neighbor who is helping to sort out the will.

This used to be a joke. “Women aren’t mothers, they’re hosts! Women aren’t people, they’re people-carriers! You are a person until the second you’re born, after which you might just be a woman. Men are people.”

Once, referring to a woman as a “host” meant you were either joking, Stephenie Meyer, or a radical I went to high school with who liked to call fetuses “parasites.”

But just last week, Virginia State Senator Steve Martin posted on his Facebook wall, in response to a Valentine from a pro-choice group, that “Once a child does exist in your womb, I’m not going to assume a right to kill it just because the child’s host (some refer to them as mothers) doesn’t want it.” (He updated the post on Monday afternoon to change the language from “host” to “bearer of the child” because THAT fixes it.)

Never tell Martin that you’ve thrown your gross old baby-carrier in a dumpster, or he’ll try to arrest you for murdering your wife.

And he used to be chair of the Education and Health Committee, which must have been exciting for him. “THEY KEEP TALKING!” he exclaimed, at every meeting. “The baby-containers keep talking, and it almost sounds like they’re forming actual words! Science is amazing.” I can’t imagine it was much fun for anyone else, though.

Now Martin claims he was joking. Really? Look, when you support a fetal personhood bill and vote for the Virginia bill that mandated ultrasounds, it seems safe to assume that literally nothing you say calling women Baby-Hosts is a joke.

I would suggest going up to him, if you’re a woman, and murmuring in a low demonic voice, “I MUST FIND A MORE SUITABLE HOST BODY,” just to see what he does, but I’m willing to give him the benefit of the doubt here. Start voting like it was a joke, and we can forget this ever happened.

Alexandra Petri writes the ComPost blog, offering a lighter take on the news and opinions of the day. She is the author of "A Field Guide to Awkward Silences".