Americans share and enjoy the right to free speech. We can say what we want and when we want – for the most part. But there are also consequences, as demonstrated by the ABC network cancelling its most successful television show – “Roseanne,” a decision that fell quickly after its star, Roseanne Barr posted racially driven comments on Twitter.Roseanne Barr’s post which targeted former Obama presidential advisor Valeri Jarrett, were offensive and clearly racially fueled. In general, we the public are accustomed to corporations in times of controversy offering carefully sanitized responses that present a balance of shame and focus on the bottom line. ABC did not do that; the network made a clear and strong decision. It cancelled its most popular tv show. No equivocation. Additionally, one of the show’s writers quit and its executive producer and co-star offered a strong social media statement against Barr’s behavior. And then Barr’s management company dumped her.
This isn’t about politics; it’s about dignity and respect. This is an issue that people of all political beliefs should be in agreement over. Language matters and racially motivated comments are simply unacceptable. On the same day that Starbucks is closing 8,000 of its stores for racial sensitivity training, ABC taught this country that bigotry will not be tolerated.