Roseanne Got the Shaft

The worst thing about the whole Roseanne Barr Twitter fiasco? It has provided the perennially pouting crew at CNN with fresh material over which to slobber. No, seriously. What’s the big deal? Roseanne shouldn’t have compared Valerie Jarrett to an ape, because no matter how harmless, or accurate, or rude, or funny that may have been, a backlash was guaranteed.

Monique Judge, a writer for The Root, was quick to wag her finger at all who dared to doubt Roseanne wasn’t a closeted Klan member. The problem for Judge is that she is guilty of the same offense, only she opted for “monkey” rather than “ape.”

“Ben Carson is a monkey of the porch variety,” tweeted Judge in 2017. When tweeters pointed out Judge’s unmistakably racist remark, she doubled down and cried racism to herself on top of it. Judge kept her job.

In response to Barr’s tweet, however, CNN brought on Tom Arnold, Roseanne’s ex-husband, to talk with Anderson Cooper about the debacle. Naturally. Yes, the same Tom Arnold who tweeted at Candace Owens: “That’s a lot of extra words @RealCandaceOwens so you can suck a racist d**k by trying to insult an actual hero @ShaunKing hahaha. #MAGA”

Here Arnold was angry at Owens for championing blacks who refuse to be pawns of the Left. And here is the double standard: Roseanne loses her job over a bad joke, while Arnold gets a spot on CNN—after having told a black woman to “suck a racist d**k”—simply because he is ideologically aligned with the Left.

Samantha Bee’s shot at Ivanka Trump would have put any rightist out of a job: “Do something about your dad’s immigration practices, you feckless cunt! He listens to you! Put on something tight and low-cut and tell your father to fuckin’ stop it.”

In one breath, Bee cursed at Ivanka and implied that her family is incestuous. Had this profanity come from the mouth of a rightist, “sexism” surely would have been the motive, and “racism” to boot would we replace Ivanka with a woman of “color.” Bee has since apologized for her remarks, but she gets to keep her job, and I don’t doubt that she’ll make light of the entire thing.

When Barack Obama had his portrait done, knowingly, by a man who specializes in illustrating whites beheaded by blacks, did either man face professional consequences? Of course not. Beheading whites in art is avant-garde. Kneecapping them professionally is “justice.” Heads must roll in the direction of progress, after all.

But is there a way to systematize this double standard? Is it being codified and taught to Americans?

Yes, it’s called “colorism,” and it’s been incubated in colleges and universities across the country. From here it crosses over into mainstream social conventions, because it is from these institutions that the people who shape the norms by which a society lives are indoctrinated. Thus, this novel idea of racism has been inculcated into the American psyche, and it explains why Roseanne lost her show while others have thrived on racial enmity.

In colorism, racism can only travel in the direction of “white” to “colored.” I placed white in quotations because when a non-white person wanders off the Left-hand path, they are considered to be “acting white.”

Case in point: Ta-Nehisi Coates’ mental breakdown over Kanye West warming up to President Trump, which he likened to his “God” Michael Jackson turning white: “God was destroyed, and we could not stop him, though we did love him, we could not stop him, because who can really stop a black god dying to be white?” Jackson was God, and God was destroyed when he became “white.” Coates has made a career out of channeling Reverend James Cone, author of A Black Theology of Liberation:

Black theology refuses to accept a God who is not identified totally with the goals of the Black community. If God is not for us and against White people, then he is a murderer, and we had better kill him. The task of Black theology is to kill Gods who do not belong to the Black community . . . Black theology will accept only the love of God which participates in the destruction of the white enemy.

Both Kanye and Jackson, according to Coates, are race traitors for seeking “white freedom,” which just means neither men entrenched themselves in racial antagonism. We don’t have to wonder what would happen if a prominent white journalist were to accuse a colleague of seeking “black freedom.” Whiteness, then, becomes a sort of pathology.

If Roseanne is to be axed for bad form, then Trump is right to demand Bob Iger, the CEO of Disney (which owns ABC) apologize for the network’s blatantly partisan attacks against the administration. When ABC investigative reporter Brian Ross used a fake source to push a fake story about Russian collusion, Ross received a suspension. ABC has since confirmed that Ross is off suspension and is back at the network. In other words, Roseanne gets fired for a bad joke, while Ross gets to keep his job after peddling a fake story that could have had damning implications for Trump.

There’s reason to believe an apology won’t happen, because Iger is either a fool or a coward. If he has not been thoroughly indoctrinated into the school of racial antagonism, then he is a coward, disguising his fear of leftist reprisal with sanctimonious preening—the same goes for Roseanne’s castmates who have turned on her.

Either we hold everyone to the same standard of professional conduct and consequence, or we admit that there is a blatant double standard at play. We are already rationalizing why the latter exists, so the outlook isn’t great. Here’s hoping Roseanne finds work with a better network that won’t offer her up as tribute to the Left. She deserves it.

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Photo credit: Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images

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About Pedro Gonzalez

Pedro Gonzalez is associate editor of Chronicles: A Magazine of American Culture and an adjunct fellow of the Center for American Greatness. He publishes the weekly Contra newsletter. Follow him on Twitter @emeriticus.

Photo: BURBANK, CA - MARCH 23: Roseanne Barr attends the premiere of ABC's "Roseanne" at Walt Disney Studio Lot on March 23, 2018 in Burbank, California. (Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images)