I’ve said it here before and I’m going to say it again. I don’t know who said it first, and maybe someone will inform me (update: I’ve been informed it was Maya Angelou. I knew that and forgot it). But, when someone tells you who they are, believe them. As you see people deflect and/or defend Roseanne Barr over her racist tweet on Tuesday, believe them. They’re showing you who and what they are.
Roseanne tweeted, “muslim brotherhood & planet of the apes had a baby=vj.” She was referencing Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett. Her hit show, which was recently rebooted, was immediately booted by ABC. They didn’t wait for a public backlash. They didn’t stick their finger in the air to test the wind. They didn’t wait for an advertiser boycott. They kicked Roseanne, and the millions it brought in from advertisers to the curb.
Conservatives quickly howled. Some pointed out that Bill Maher had compared Trump to an orangutan, not really getting the difference that comparing a white guy with a primate is different from doing it with a black person. Others pointed out that Jimmy Kimmel had made fun of Melania Trump’s accent, so that must be racist. Some brought up Joy Behar’s comment about Mike Pence talking to Jesus, and Jesus talking back and wondered why it’s OK to mock Christianity but not Islam. All these equivocations are excusing racism, which is what conservatives did when they voted for Trump.
At first, Roseanne said she didn’t understand why it was racist. Then, she apologized. Then, she apologized again and blamed it on taking Ambien, which must now come with a warning label stating, “may cause racist tweeting.”
Conservatives celebrated the return of Roseanne because she is a supporter of Donald Trump. Eighteen million people watched the debut and Trump said it was “about us.” And it was about them every time Roseanne tweeted a debunked conspiracy theory or something racist, just like the president likes to do. Now, conservatives will notch this episode as another example of their perceived persecution.
ABC may have been ready to pull the plug knowing that at any moment Roseanne would force their hand. ABC Entertainment president Channing Dungey, who is the first African-American woman to hold that position in network television, had defended Roseanne and her show in the past. This time she said, “Roseanne’s Twitter statement is abhorrent, repugnant and inconsistent with our values, and we have decided to cancel her show.”
In the past, Roseanne’s tweets accused George Soros of being a Nazi who turned Jews over to concentration camps and stole their wealth. The lesson here is, do business with a Trump supporter, expect a racist tweet.
Roseanne’s agency also dumped her and consulting producer Wanda Sykes left the show immediately after the tweet.
Conservatives, who want NFL players fired for kneeling and an end to college safe spaces for “snowflakes,” decried the political correctness of canceling the show. What they don’t understand is, it’s not political correctness to disassociate yourself from racists. Is it only political correctness that’s preventing the creation of a sitcom about a wacky KKK family, or a show called Those Darn Next Door Nazis?
Producer and actor on the show Sara Gilbert said that Barr’s comments were, “abhorrent and do not reflect the beliefs of our cast and crew.” Previously, as a liberal activist, she was criticized for being on the show. She explained it by saying, “it’s not so much about the politics as it is about how the struggle of the working class is affecting families.” She added that working with Barr was from a desire of understanding each other.
She also stated, “Are you not supposed to talk to each other? All of us should be working together and talking to people of different views.”
But Gilbert just learned that’s almost impossible with Trump supporters. As Roseanne proved, it’s difficult to talk and understand when they start throwing out conspiracy theories, calling liberals Nazis and compare African-Americans to apes.
When that starts, it’s time to pull the plug. But maybe it never should have been plugged-in in the first place.
Watch me draw.
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