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The Downfall of Roseanne Barr

In less than 24 hours, Roseanne Barr’s world has fallen and crashed.

Hannah Demissie

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When ABC brought “Roseanne” back in March of 2018 nearly 20 years after originally airing, it was an instant hit,  bringing in the highest ratings that ABC had seen in years.

One of the reasons why it was such a big success was because the show appealed to all different types of people, including Trump supporters. This was a strategy used by ABC in order to appeal to more viewers and it was an idea that worked… until yesterday.

ABC made the decision to cancel “Roseanne” this week after the star of the show, Roseanne Barr, made a racially charged tweet about Valerie Jarret,  a former senior adviser to President Barack Obama.

In the tweet, Barr said that if the “Muslim brotherhood and planet of the apes had a baby=vj.” Earlier, Barr also called Chelsea Clinton “Chelsea Soros Clinton” in reference to George Soros who is a wealthy investor and business magnate.

This isn’t the first time that Barr had made a racially charged or controversial comments on Twitter. In 2013, Barr compared former national security advisor Susan Rice to an ape as well. Even though Barr apologized for her actions it was an incident that ABC could not forgive.

 

 

The decision to cancel the show came quickly from ABC President Channing Dungey, who is the first African American women to head a major broadcast network. Dungey said that “Roseanne’s Twitter statement is abhorrent, repugnant, and inconsistent with our values, and we have decided to cancel her show.”

Even though the canceling of “Roseanne” came quickly, it shouldn’t be surprising to viewers.

ABC and its parent company Disney have made huge strides for African Americans in television and movies with shows like “Scandal” which starred Kerry Washington, “How to Get Away with Murder” which stars Viola Davis, and the blockbuster hit “Black Panther.”

If ABC didn’t cancel “Roseanne,” it would undermine all the progress that ABC and Disney has made to give African Americans a voice in television and movies.

Are you looking for digital journalism training and experience? Are you a journalism major who wants to take your career to the next level? CMN’s Digital Journalism course gives you real-time experience, intense feedback on your writing, exposure to journalism influencers and mentors, and a great place to display your work. You can get academic credit too. Check out the Digital Journalism Course here.

I'm a rising junior at American University majoring in political science. Besides writing for CMN, I'm also a tour guide at American University, a senator in Student Government, and a member of my sorority Alpha Epsilon Phi. You can check out more of my writing on my blog: https://www.thewonkblog.com/

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