Roseanne tweet prompts ABC to re-run Terminator II

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jserraglio
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Roseanne tweet prompts ABC to re-run Terminator II

Post by jserraglio » Tue May 29, 2018 4:48 pm

NYT — ABC canceled the hit sitcom “Roseanne” on Tuesday hours after the show’s star and co-creator, Roseanne Barr, posted a racist tweet about a former top adviser to President Barack Obama.
Early on Tuesday, Ms. Barr posted a comment about Valerie Jarrett, an African-American woman who was a senior adviser to Mr. Obama throughout his presidency and considered one of his most influential aides, that said if “muslim brotherhood & planet of the apes had a baby=vj.”
Hours later, ABC canceled Ms. Barr’s show, which had ended its successful comeback season last week and was expected to return in the fall for 13 episodes.
“Roseanne’s Twitter statement is abhorrent, repugnant and inconsistent with our values, and we have decided to cancel her show,” ABC’s entertainment president, Channing Dungey, said in a statement. Ms. Dungey was appointed to her current role in February 2016, becoming the first black entertainment president of a major broadcast television network.
Robert A. Iger, the chief executive of the Walt Disney Company, ABC’s corporate parent, shared Ms. Dungey’s statement on his own Twitter account, adding: “There was only one thing to do here, and that was the right thing.”
The sudden cancellation of a hit show with some of the highest ratings for a new series in years stunned an industry in which high ratings have become increasingly elusive.
The move’s swiftness was decided by Ms. Dungey with the support of Mr. Iger, who was involved in the process starting very early on Tuesday, according to two Disney insiders who spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe company matters.
There was more at stake than just a hit show. Disney has been widely praised in recent years as a leader in efforts to combat racial stereotypes through its movies and TV series, whether on “Doc McStuffins,” a Disney Channel cartoon about an African-American girl who wants to be a doctor; “How to Get Away With Murder,” a vehicle for Viola Davis to become the first black woman to win a lead-actress Emmy; and “Black Panther,” which smashed an entertainment-industry belief that movies rooted in black culture could not become global blockbusters.
If Disney did not act forcefully with regard to “Roseanne,” much of that work might have been rendered moot.
Although the second season of “Roseanne” was not scheduled to air for four months, the timing of Ms. Barr’s racist post was terrible for ABC. She wrote the message just two weeks after the network made its pitch to advertisers about its coming fall lineup, with the hope of attracting up to $9 billion in advertising commitments by summer’s end. “Roseanne,” and its enormous audience and broad appeal, was the centerpiece of ABC’s presentation. Ms. Barr was introduced to the stage at Lincoln Center’s David Geffen Hall before any other ABC executive or star.
Ms. Barr’s Twitter account was also the source of some lighthearted humor during the network’s presentation. She joked that her tweets were actually written by the head of ABC’s television group, Ben Sherwood.
When he followed her on stage, Mr. Sherwood joked that he had “absolutely nothing to do with Roseanne’s Twitter account,” while displaying a parody tweet by Ms. Barr that referred to him as more “handsome” and “rugged” than Ben Affleck.
Then came Ms. Barr’s tweet about Ms. Jarrett.
Ms. Barr initially dismissed accusations that the comment was racist, defending it as "a joke.” She also said on Twitter, “ISLAM is not a RACE, lefties. Islam includes EVERY RACE of people.”
She later deleted the post about Ms. Jarrett, and initially said nothing about the reference to “The Planet of the Apes.” About a half-hour later, she offered an apology.
“I apologize to Valerie Jarrett and to all Americans,” she wrote. “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.”
Ms. Barr also said she was “leaving Twitter.”
The fallout over the Twitter post had begun earlier. Wanda Sykes, the black comedian who served as a consulting producer on “Roseanne” this season, said she was leaving the sitcom. Whitney Cummings — a showrunner for the revived comedy, and one of its most outspoken liberal supporters — had already left the series this month.
The Rev. Al Sharpton said that Ms. Barr’s comparing Ms. Jarrett to an “APE is racist and inexcusable. ABC must take action NOW!” Tom Arnold, Ms. Barr’s former husband and co-star, called her Twitter posts “dangerous.” And the MSNBC host Joe Scarborough said, “There is no apology she can make that justifies @ABC turning a blind eye to this bigotry by airing another second of her show.”
Before she apologized, Ms. Barr had an exchange with Chelsea Clinton after Ms. Barr referred to Ms. Clinton as “Chelsea Soros Clinton,” a reference to George Soros, the billionaire liberal donor who is often the focus of conservative critics. Donald Trump Jr. shared one of Ms. Barr’s posts in the exchange.
Ms. Barr’s often incendiary use of Twitter has stayed in the background amid the “Roseanne” revival’s success.
Months before the show premiered, she said that her children had taken her social media accounts away from her. It was no small matter: Ms. Barr has used Twitter to promote conspiracy theories, and some ABC executives were worried that she might say something offensive enough to lead viewers or advertisers to revolt.
Ms. Barr has been outspoken in her support of President Trump, who called to congratulate her on the ratings for the show’s premiere episode, and in her antipathy toward Hillary Clinton.
But as viewers flocked to “Roseanne,” to the delight of ABC executives, Ms. Barr returned to Twitter. None of her posts threatened the show’s success, although some did attract scrutiny. One of Ms. Barr’s messages accused a survivor of the high school shooting in Parkland, Fla., of giving a Nazi salute; another involved a conspiracy theory about Mr. Trump quietly breaking up a child sex trafficking ring including prominent Democrats.
ABC was able to sidestep controversy in both instances.
“You can’t control Roseanne Barr,” Mr. Sherwood, the president of ABC’s television group, said in an interview with The New York Times in March, when asked about her Twitter account. “Many who have tried have failed. She’s the one and only.”
There have been other sources of controversy.
The revival’s third episode featured a joke about two ABC comedies with diverse casts, “black-ish” and “Fresh Off the Boat.” Ms. Barr’s character and her husband, Dan, played by John Goodman, wake up on the their living room couch, having fallen asleep in front of the television. “We missed all the shows about black and Asian families,” Dan Conner said. To laughter from the show’s studio audience, Roseanne Conner responded, “They’re just like us. There, now you’re all caught up.”
The joke prompted an outcry but ABC defended the show. “We felt writers were looking to tip a hat to those shows,” Ms. Dungey said this month. “It certainly wasn’t meant to offend. I do stand by the ‘Roseanne’ writers.”
Even as the “Roseanne” revival experienced success, ABC’s relationship with the “black-ish” showrunner, Kenya Barris, deteriorated. The network made the rare decision earlier this year to pull an episode of the show, which is known for its frank assessment of race relations. The episode involved the main character, Dre, raising socially fraught issues while telling a bedtime story to his son. Mr. Barris is in negotiations to leave his ABC contract and begin working with Netflix.
“Roseanne” will probably finish the 2017-18 television season as the No. 3 rated show, behind two NBC programs: “Sunday Night Football” and “This is Us.” More than 18 million people on average have watched “Roseanne” this season, according to Nielsen’s delayed viewing data.
[The “Roseanne” revival suggested that “as long as you’re good to your neighbors individually, it doesn’t matter how you treat people in the aggregate,” wrote our critic.]
Still, the series was an afterthought on the Walt Disney Company’s most recent earnings call with investors. Despite its outsize success, “Roseanne” was not mentioned in the company’s prepared remarks, and it was only referenced after an investor asked a question about how the company felt about the network’s position going into a new TV season.
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Last edited by jserraglio on Wed May 30, 2018 11:54 am, edited 1 time in total.

david johnson
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Re: Rosanne tweet prompts ABC to re-run Terminator II

Post by david johnson » Wed May 30, 2018 5:13 am

“ISLAM is not a RACE, lefties. Islam includes EVERY RACE of people.” this is true.

jserraglio
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Re: Rosanne tweet prompts ABC to re-run Terminator II

Post by jserraglio » Wed May 30, 2018 7:05 am

david johnson wrote:
Wed May 30, 2018 5:13 am
“ISLAM is not a RACE, lefties. Islam includes EVERY RACE of people.” this is true.
You appear to have somewhat missed the point of the ad hominem remark Roseanne Barr aimed at Valerie Jarrett — her alluding to Planet of the Apes was the racist part of the tweet, whereas referring to the Muslim Brotherhood was merely religious bigotry. There is a distinction between racism and bigotry, even though Roseanne probably does not discriminate between the two: in this instance she managed to disparage both African-Americans and Muslims.

BTW, the New York Times where this story appeared is an equal-opportunity employer — many righties as well as southpaws write for what may be, hands down even if leftist, the greatest newspaper in the Western World.
Last edited by jserraglio on Wed May 30, 2018 12:43 pm, edited 3 times in total.

lennygoran
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Re: Rosanne tweet prompts ABC to re-run Terminator II

Post by lennygoran » Wed May 30, 2018 7:48 am

IMO her tweet was despicable-would love to have trump asked about it-he's a big fan of hers. Len :(

jserraglio
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Re: Rosanne tweet prompts ABC to re-run Terminator II

Post by jserraglio » Wed May 30, 2018 8:00 am

lennygoran wrote:
Wed May 30, 2018 7:48 am
IMO her tweet was despicable-would love to have trump asked about it-he's a big fan of hers. Len :(
Moral of the story -- lefties will be tossed into the trashbin of history along with Barack Obama, Herbert Hoover, Henry Truman, Gerald Ford, Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton.

lennygoran
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Re: Rosanne tweet prompts ABC to re-run Terminator II

Post by lennygoran » Wed May 30, 2018 8:06 am

jserraglio wrote:
Wed May 30, 2018 8:00 am
lennygoran wrote:
Wed May 30, 2018 7:48 am
IMO her tweet was despicable-would love to have trump asked about it-he's a big fan of hers. Len :(
Moral of the story -- lefties will be tossed into the trashbin of history along with Barack Obama, Herbert Hoover, Henry Truman, Gerald Ford, Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton.

No way-we gotta BLUE WAVE coming our way! Len in secaucus :lol:

jserraglio
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Re: Roseanne tweet prompts ABC to re-run Terminator II

Post by jserraglio » Wed May 30, 2018 10:40 am

NYT Opinion
By James Poniewozik

There is, it turns out, a line.

Early Tuesday morning, Roseanne Barr crossed it.

And within half a day, ABC, though Ms. Barr had given the network its biggest hit of the past season, enforced it.

First, the comedian and star of the revived “Roseanne” leveled a dehumanizing insult at Valerie Jarrett, calling the African-American former adviser to Barack Obama the offspring of “muslim brotherhood & planet of the apes.” Then she tried to pass off the slur, by way of halfhearted apology, as a “joke” — as if, somehow, a racist joke were any better than a racist statement.

Here’s the sad thing. Ms. Barr’s tweet, while shocking, was not unbelievable. What was truly surprising was that a commercial TV network took action against a valuable star, quickly and definitively, and in plain words.

“Roseanne’s Twitter statement is abhorrent, repugnant and inconsistent with our values, and we have decided to cancel her show,” the ABC entertainment president, Channing Dungey, said in a statement.

You could criticize ABC for working with Ms. Barr, who has a long history of offenses, especially since she joined Twitter. You could argue that the network was just trying to stave off bad publicity or boycotts. You could wonder if behind-the-scenes troubles or declining ratings (common to many TV revivals) played a role.

But credit where due: ABC canceled its highest-rated show, a linchpin of its fall schedule, as a stand against its star’s racism. That decision will probably cut into the network’s advertising profits. There may be no perfect moral actors in this world, but that’s still a moral action.

As we’ve seen with #MeToo, which has taken figures like Louis C. K. and Matt Lauer off TV, this is the sort of decision that corporations in our society often make more quickly and punitively than voters. But it is not a step you can take for granted.

Take Donald Trump. Forget his statements as president or on the “Access Hollywood” bus. He began peddling the birther slur — that Mr. Obama, the first black president, was not born in the United States — while the fourth “Celebrity Apprentice” was on NBC. The network kept him as host for three more seasons, and aired one more on which he was executive producer.

In 2013, the “Duck Dynasty” star Phil Robertson gave an interview likening “homosexual behavior” to bestiality and suggesting that black people in the South were more content before the civil rights movement. The A&E network suspended him for nine days before reversing its decision, less a slap than a tap on the wrist.

The “Roseanne” decision, on the other hand, will come at a price for ABC — and like any such step, will have collateral costs. In a Twitter post, Sara Gilbert, Ms. Barr’s co-star and an executive producer of the revival, deplored Ms. Barr’s comments as “abhorrent.” She added that the series was “separate and apart from the opinions of one cast member.”

There’s some truth to that last comment. “Roseanne,” the revival, was imperfect but complicated, trying to engage with important if volatile issues. At times, it had ugly racial overtones, including a snide swipe at ABC’s sitcoms about “black and Asian families” and references to “illegals.” At other times the show pushed back against her character, or even ridiculed her.

But finally, none of that matters. “Roseanne” is a story. The issue here was the real act of a real person, saying the sort of thing that leads to real corrosion in the real world when it becomes normalized.

Make no mistake: The “Roseanne” decision would also have been expensive if ABC hadn’t canceled the show. It’s just that the costs would have been borne, as they generally are, by vulnerable people whose tormentors would be emboldened by seeing someone famous and powerful get away with it.

For that matter, it would insult people in small towns like the Lanford, Ill., of “Roseanne” — towns like the one I grew up in — for a TV network to imply that the only way to represent them is by indulging racism.

The character Roseanne said something like that a quarter-century ago, when her son was reluctant to kiss a black girl in a school play. “I didn’t raise you to be some little bigot!” she told him. “Black people are just like us. They’re every bit as good as us, and any people who don’t think so is just a bunch of banjo-pickin’, cousin-datin’, barefoot embarrassments to respectable white trash like us!”

Corporations involved in controversies like this usually simply want them to disappear. This one, because “Roseanne” has long since been drafted into the culture war, probably won’t.

Even if the president, who praised “Roseanne” to his supporters as being “about us,” doesn’t weigh in, even if Ms. Barr herself stays off Twitter, recent history tells us people will seize on the opportunity to say that the p.c. thought police are repressing us, because a rich woman lost her job for calling a black woman an ape. ABC will have picked a side regardless.

At least it picked the right one here. The battle against bigotry is not just about bigots. It’s about those who reap the benefits of ignoring bigots, and still think they should be able to call themselves good people. When an institution like ABC takes a stand — in prime time, where people notice it — that matters.

I’ll be cynical again tomorrow. For now I’m glad that a corporation had an opportunity to think only of its bottom line, and chose to draw a line instead.

lennygoran
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Re: Roseanne tweet prompts ABC to re-run Terminator II

Post by lennygoran » Wed May 30, 2018 9:15 pm

If only the Republicans would do as much as ABC did. Len

david johnson
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Re: Rosanne tweet prompts ABC to re-run Terminator II

Post by david johnson » Thu May 31, 2018 4:30 am

jserraglio wrote:
Wed May 30, 2018 7:05 am
david johnson wrote:
Wed May 30, 2018 5:13 am
“ISLAM is not a RACE, lefties. Islam includes EVERY RACE of people.” this is true.
You appear to have somewhat missed the point of the ad hominem remark Roseanne Barr aimed at Valerie Jarrett — her alluding to Planet of the Apes was the racist part of the tweet, whereas referring to the Muslim Brotherhood was merely religious bigotry. There is a distinction between racism and bigotry, even though Roseanne probably does not discriminate between the two: in this instance she managed to disparage both African-Americans and Muslims.

BTW, the New York Times where this story appeared is an equal-opportunity employer — many righties as well as southpaws write for what may be, hands down even if leftist, the greatest newspaper in the Western World.
0 was missed and I well understand what was said. The statement stands as truth.

jserraglio
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Re: Rosanne tweet prompts ABC to re-run Terminator II

Post by jserraglio » Thu May 31, 2018 6:24 am

david johnson wrote:
Thu May 31, 2018 4:30 am
0 was missed and I well understand what was said. The statement stands as truth.
The statement struck me as having a bit more truism to it than truth. The truth is rarely pure and never simple. Modern life would be very tedious if it were either.

Rach3
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Re: Roseanne tweet prompts ABC to re-run Terminator II

Post by Rach3 » Sun Jun 03, 2018 3:12 pm

Maher, as usual, does a good summing up:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uJ_zptUUbgo&t=13s

lennygoran
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Re: Roseanne tweet prompts ABC to re-run Terminator II

Post by lennygoran » Sun Jun 03, 2018 4:07 pm

Rach3 wrote:
Sun Jun 03, 2018 3:12 pm
Maher, as usual, does a good summing up:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uJ_zptUUbgo&t=13s
Very good--I don't watch him but maybe I should! Regards, Len :lol:

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