The Public Sanitization of Roseanne Barr Is The Reason Why Racism Is An Acceptable Currency
Roseanne Barr is back in the news again. The headlines from CNN, NBC and all the other outlets are painting the picture of a woman who is “tearful” — and hysterical over the tragedy that the consequences of her actions are damningly irreversible.
Almost a month ago — the embattled comedian pushed her luck with a vile tweet that compared former Obama advisor — Valerie Jarret to an ape. According to Barr — the intention wasn’t to be racist — and also — the fact that she was taking ambien definitely played a part in her ill-fated decision.
ABC swiftly canceled Roseanne — the show that had been a thorn in our side ever since the reboot was announced.
It was a major “fuck you” move to revive something that represented the exact playbook of Trump’s America. They are the ones who adore the themes of a White blue collar family — that harbor enough ignorance and intolerance to lazily assign stereotypical labels to new neighbors.
Before the show’s abrupt shutdown — there was an episode that featured a new family — who were propped to play the role of Muslims that may or may not be up to no good. Roseanne’s bigoted paranoia leads her to assume that they’re manufacturing bombs in the basement of their home.
The fact that ABC co-signed such a deplorable message that normalizes the deadly effects of Islamophobia — neatly packaged in a beloved sitcom — that’s headed by a loud-mouthed matriarch — who is unapologetically unwelcoming to people with ethnic-tendencies — aptly explains why the network recently gave the green light to a second reboot that features all the family members — except Roseanne.
The spinoff tentatively titled “The Connors” will begin its run this fall — and it was made possible by pressure from heartbroken fans — who couldn’t imagine life without the family that endorses their views in the same way Trump serves as the voice of unreason.
It’s quite telling that ABC would quickly jump at the chance of securing the loot on that money train after risking it all for the glory of upholding the principles that aren’t meant to be flexible when it comes to overt racism.
Roseanne Barr shouldn’t have been given another opportunity to get rich off her seamless ability to make jokes out of shit that isn’t funny.
But greed took over — and the powers that be who are parading as decent human beings when they’re really immoral bastards — are now celebrating a major win — in the form of a revamped sitcom that was borne out of a lucrative deal for the woman who started all the trouble in the first place.
And now the woman at the center of the storm is being courted by the media — as we listen to her tearful monologue that’s supposed to soften hearts and perhaps initiate a “comeback tour” of sorts — that could promise a re-appearance on the show she created.
She confesses her sins to a rabbi on his popular podcast — and claims that she had no inkling that comparing a Black woman to an ape would incite enough outrage to end her career. She admits that she “feels remorse” and “horribly regrets” what she did — out of “ignorance.”
She also said this:
“I’m a lot of things. I’m a loud mouth and all that stuff, but I’m not stupid, for God’s sake. And I never would have wittingly called any black person … say they are a monkey. I just wouldn’t do that, and I didn’t do that.”
“I’ve made myself a hate magnet.” “And as a Jew, it’s just horrible. It’s horrible.”
Here’s the thing — the public sanitization of Roseanne Barr — is the reason why racism is an acceptable currency.
White people are allowed to behave badly because when they’re brought to trial — they can sob tears of sorrow in the hopes that it washes away their guilt. And most of the time it does — because they’ve been programmed to believe that their Whiteness makes them human enough to claim “ignorance” — which absolves them of the irresponsibility on display.
A White woman named Alison Ettel can intimidate an 8-year-old Black girl who is selling cold water on a hot day — by threatening to call the police if she doesn’t keep quiet — and demanding to see the permit that legalizes doing what young White girls are able to do in their quaint neighborhoods without harassment.
Once the video of her “pretending” to call the police went viral — Alison Ettel’s world came crashing down — and as expected she’s describing her new nightmare in a flurry of tears. She’s the victim — who’s receiving death threats — and it was all because of an unfortunate “miscommunication.”
White people have no issue setting up the scene of provocation — and they do it because they reserve the right to behave abominably.
But — when the repercussions of their questionable choices become a reality — the sobbing fest begins — and we’re annoyingly treated to the version of events that don’t match the character assessment of the White woman who willfully used her privilege to weaponize a young Black child.
Or the White woman who publicly insulted the Black woman who devoted her life to the upkeep of this country — by attacking her with references that have been historically utilized to devalue the worth of people of color.
When will we arrive at the place where racists aren’t feted for information about why they’re racists — when the answers are jarringly obvious?
Why are they given the chance to weep their way out of the very mess they made as if hearing their shaky voices or watching the tears stream down their faces — is supposed to wipe the slate clean because of the visible reminder of human vulnerablity?
What about other humans who were too Black to survive the punishment of the station that deprived them the right to shed tears — while explaining how a traffic stop ended with violence at the hands of brutal cops?
How about Black tears from a boy who survived his gun shot wound to the belly? Where is his testimony of woe at the horror of his almost-death at the hands of thugs in badges?
Where’s the Black mother holding her toddler daughter and heaving with pain after experiencing the shooting death of her boyfriend — in their car — and in the presence of a child who will grow up with scars that will never heal?
Racism is normalized because of how White women in particular — are coddled like precious gems — after they’ve orchestrated the very worst qualities of human behavior — and then those White tears start to flow with urgency — as they attempt to pretty up the ugliness of their disposition.
Black tears aren’t valuable enough to get the royal treatment. We’re used to graphic videos that depict how little we matter.
We’d rather be greeted by the media’s dedication to Roseanne Barr’s personal and professional hell than the tears of a Black woman who just lost her son to another act of gun violence at the hands of a rookie cop.
Always White tears — and the pain that’s unfairly sanitized