Hours after Roseanne Barr told her 784,000 Twitter followers that President Obama’s former adviser, Valerie Jarrett, looked like the by-product of the “Muslim brotherhood and planet of the apes” yesterday (May 29), ABC cancelled its newly rebooted series. Hours after that, Jarrett appeared on MSNBC’s “Everyday Racism in America” town hall — something that had already been coincidentally scheduled to take place.
During the the town hall, which was hosted by Joy Reid and Chris Hayes, Jarrett was asked about the TV star’s social commentary about her.
Unfazed by Roseanne’s tweet, the former White House adviser said, “First of all, I think we have to turn it into a teaching moment. I’m fine. I’m worried about all the people out there who don’t have a circle of friends or followers to come right to their defense.”
While Jarrett’s response recognizes this moment as a “teaching lesson” and highlights basic racism exhibited on a daily basis, ABC Entertainment president Channing Dungey, who is the company’s first Black president, said enough is enough. Disney CEO Bob Iger posted a message from her on Twitter. He also made sure to add a comment of his own.
From Channing Dungey, President of ABC Entertainment: "Roseanne's Twitter statement is abhorrent, repugnant and inconsistent with our values, and we have decided to cancel her show."
There was only one thing to do here, and that was the right thing.
— Robert Iger (@RobertIger) May 29, 2018
Roseanne has since issued an apology to “her cast members and to African Americans,” but followed her redress by saying she was just “Ambien tweeting.” Her post about the powers of the famed sleeping pill has since been deleted, but Sanofi, the maker of the drug, was not receptive to her “excuse.” And for the first time in a long time — if ever — a pharmaceutical company responded to a social, racial and political issue by saying, “While all pharmaceutical treatments have side effects, racism is not a known side effect of any Sanofi medication.”
People of all races, religions and nationalities work at Sanofi every day to improve the lives of people around the world. While all pharmaceutical treatments have side effects, racism is not a known side effect of any Sanofi medication.
— Sanofi US (@SanofiUS) May 30, 2018