The ABC star early Tuesday tweeted a picture of Valarie Jarrett, former Barack Obama advisor, with the blurb: “Muslim brotherhood & planet of the apes had a baby=vj.” After a barrage of criticism, Barr deleted the tweet and offered this half-hearted mea culpa:
As a display of contrition, this falls far short of the mark. After all, the original offending tweet wasn’t offensive because it was about Jarrett’s politics or looks. Rather, it was conspiratorial, racist, and Islamophobic.
But as insufficient as it is, Barr at least made a gesture of remorse, which throws into relief the utter silence of her employer, ABC. As New York Times reporter Sopan Deb tweeted:
As Deb suggests, Roseanne Barr making incendiary and conspiratorial comments is hardly a surprise.
CNN’s Brian Stelter offered a similar analysis:
ABC knew her history when they gave her a new show and they’ve decided to keep their peace and enjoy the high ratings. Her racism and paranoia says as much about the network as it does about the star.
Update, 12:55 EST: Wanda Sykes, consulting producer on Roseanne, has announced she won’t be returning to the show.