Roseanne Got Fired . . . What About the NFL Players Again?

Roseanne Barr just got fired. ABC canceled her show.

Roseanne works for a private company. When she tapes her show before a studio audience, she’s not free to make assorted comments, political or otherwise.

She can’t do whatever she likes just to make a statement. Remember, freedom of speech doesn’t apply to a private workplace.

And the studio audience is there to be entertained. They didn’t wait in line to view a taping of “Meet the Press.” They’re not really interested in hearing points of view that may conflict with their own.

Well, Roseanne didn’t do any of that. She didn’t make controversial statements or stage a demonstration at a taping of any of her shows.

She did have something to say on Twitter, though.

It was about Valerie Jarrett, a former adviser to President Obama.

Roseanne’s tweet linked Jarrett to the Muslim Brotherhood and to the “Planet of the Apes.”

“Muslim brotherhood & planet of the apes had a baby = vj.”

To be fair, Jarrett, during her White House tenure, did display an affinity to the Muslim Brotherhood and for the terrorist government of Iran.

As far as the “Planet of the Apes,” no one knows for sure if she’s a fan.

And it doesn’t seem like ABC bothered to check. They fired Roseanne in an instant, calling her tweet “abhorrent, repugnant and inconsistent with our values.”

Poor Roseanne. She was just being Roseanne, making “a bad joke about her politics and her looks.”

ABC thought otherwise.

This may come as a surprise: NFL players also work for private companies. When they show up for a game before 50,000-60,000 fans, they’re not free to make assorted comments, political or otherwise.

The players can’t do whatever they like just to make a statement. Remember, freedom of speech does not apply to a private workplace.

And those thousands of fans are there to see some entertaining football. They didn’t purchase a ticket to “Meet the Press Meets the Packers.” They’re not really interested in hearing points of view that may conflict with their own.

And yet . . . some NFL players kneel—or want to—during the playing of the National Anthem just to make a statement. And they do it right there on the field, not on Twitter or Facebook.

This has been going on for a while, and players have yet to be fired.

Even though millions of people find their behavior to be abhorrent, repugnant and inconsistent with their values.

I wonder why.

Maybe if kneeling players mimicked a gorilla, the NFL would take notice and fire the bunch of them.

About Steve Lipman

Steve Lipman is a writer in Los Angeles whose irreverent approach to the serious issues of the day goes where angels fear to tread.

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