Back in May, ABC made the decision to remove Roseanne Barr from her hit show after she posted a tweet comparing Barack Obama’s former aide Valerie Jarrett to a character from “Planet of the Apes.” The network decided that her character on the show would be killed off in a disgusting way, and Roseanne has delivered the perfect response.
ABC ultimately pulled the plug on the revival of “Roseanne” after series star and creator Roseanne Barr made a comment on Twitter referring to former Obama aide Valerie Jarrett as looking like the offspring of the “Muslim Brotherhood & Planet of the Apes.” Jarrett, an African, was born in Iran to American parents, of which Barr claimed to be unaware.
“Roseanne’s Twitter statement is abhorrent, repugnant and inconsistent with our values, and we have decided to cancel her show,” ABC Entertainment president Channing Dungey said in a statement. Disney chairman and CEO Bob Iger voiced his support for the cancellation, tweeting, “There was only one thing to do here, and that was the right thing.”
Barr deleted her tweet about Jarrett not long after posting it. She followed it up with an apology that read, “I apologize to Valerie Jarrett and to all Americans. I am truly sorry for making a bad joke about her politics and her looks. I should have known better. Forgive me-my joke was in bad taste. I am now leaving Twitter.” [Source: Variety]
On Tuesday evening, we finally learned how Barr would meet her end on the reboot of “Roseanne,” titled “The Connors.” Her character died via an opioid overdose. Barr was appalled that the network would retaliate against her by having her character meet such an unnecessarily tragic demise.
Roseanne Barr has blasted ABC over the ‘unnecessary grim and morbid’ end to her eponymous character on Tuesday night’s premiere of The Conners, before tweeting in typical bombastic fashion ‘I AIN’T Dead B******!”
The Emmy-winning sitcom returned for its eleventh season without the star on Tuesday night in the wake of Barr’s racist tweet scandal during the hiatus. Despite ultimately giving her permission for the show to continue, Barr was not happy with the show’s opening plot line. [Source: Daily Mail]
Barr and her longtime Rabbi and friend, World Values Network Founder Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, issued a statement on the ordeal, saying, “While we wish the very best for the cast and production crew of The Conners, all of whom are deeply dedicated to their craft and were Roseanne’s cherished colleagues, we regret that ABC chose to cancel Roseanne by killing off the Roseanne Conner character. That it was done through an opioid overdose lent an unnecessary grim and morbid dimension to an otherwise happy family show.”
“This was a choice the network did not have to make,” they added. “Roseanne was the only show on television that directly addressed the deep divisions threatening the very fabric of our society. Specifically, the show promoted the message that love and respect for one another’s personhood should transcend differences in background and ideological discord.”
“The show brought together characters of different political persuasions and ethnic backgrounds in one, unified family, a rarity in modern American entertainment,” stated Barr and Shmuley. “Above all else, the show celebrated a strong, matriarchal woman in a leading role, something we need more of in our country.”
“Through humor and a universally relatable main character, the show represented a weekly teaching moment for our nation,” they went on. “Yet it is often following an inexcusable — but not unforgivable — mistake that we can discover the most important lesson of all: Forgiveness.”
“After repeated and heartfelt apologies, the network was unwilling to look past a regrettable mistake, thereby denying the twin American values of both repentance and forgiveness,” they stated in reference to Barr’s tweet about Jarrett. “In a hyper-partisan climate, people will sometimes make the mistake of speaking with words that do not truly reflect who they are. However, it is the power of forgiveness that defines our humanity.”
“Our society needs to heal on many levels. What better way for healing than a shared moment, once a week, where we could have all enjoyed a compelling storyline featuring a witty character — a woman — who America connected with, not in spite of her flaws, but because of them. The cancellation of Roseanne is an opportunity squandered due in equal parts to fear, hubris, and a refusal to forgive,” Barr and Shmuley concluded.
Sadly, it appears that values like forgiveness and repentance have no place on network television any longer. If you agree with Roseanne, please share this story with your friends.