Valerie Jarrett is speaking out about the racist tweet Roseanne Barr directed at her. The former White House advisor to President Barack Obama addressed the vile message that subsequently go the Roseanne reboot canceled during a scheduled appearance on MSNBC’s Everyday Racism in America.
“I think we have to turn it into a teaching moment. I’m fine,” Jarrett told Joy Reid and Chris Hayes during the town hall. “I’m worried about all the people out there who don’t have a circle of friends and followers who come right to their defense. The person walking down the street minding their own business and they see somebody clinging to their purse or want to cross the street or every Black parent I know who has to sit down and have a conversation — the talk, as we call it — those ordinary examples of racism that happen every day.”
In the now-deleted tweet, Barr connected Jarrett, who was born in Iran and is black, to the Muslim Brotherhood and the movie Planet of the Apes. “Muslim brotherhood & planet of the apes had a baby=vj,” she wrote.
The backlash to her tweet was swift. ABC quickly canceled the show. “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 announcing the news. Walt Disney CEO and Chairman Bob Iger echoed the statement on Twitter, writing “There was only one thing to do here, and that was the right thing.”
Many in Hollywood expressed their outrage at the vile, racist tweet that Barr sent. Shonda Rhimes reflected that it was unfair for the cast and crew who are now left unemployed. “The terrible part is all of the talented innocent people who worked on that show now suffer because of this,” she wrote.
“But honestly she got what she deserved. As I tell my 4 year old, one makes a choice with one’s actions. Roseanne made a choice. A racist one. ABC made a choice. A human one.”
Despite having the show canceled, castmembers and producers, like Wanda Sykes, fully support the decision.
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