Roseanne Barr Denies She is Racist in a Podcast Interview
In the talk with Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, the sacked Roseanne star expressed a baffling mix of remorse, non-remorse and excuses for her racist tweet that led to the demise of ABC’s red-hot sitcom revival.
In the since-deleted tweet, Barr compared former Barack Obama staffer Valerie Jarrett, who is African-American, to an ape:
"muslim brotherhood & planet of the apes had a baby=vj.”
The podcast in question was recorded in late May, days after the tweet that was followed by widespread outrage—including from Barr’s co-stars—and a swift cancellation from ABC.
"I lost everything, and I regretted it before I lost everything,” Barr told Boteach.
"And I said to God, 'I am willing to accept whatever consequences this brings because I know I've done wrong. I'm going to accept what the consequences are,' and I do, and I have. But they don't ever stop. They don't accept my apology, or explanation. And I've made myself a hate magnet.”
Then Barr claimed that she didn’t know Jarrett was African-American, implying her tweets weren’t in fact racially tinged.
"I'm a lot of things, a loudmouth and all that stuff. But I'm not stupid for God's sake. I never would have wittingly called any black person, [I would never had said] they are a monkey," Barr told her interviewer. "I just wouldn't do that. I didn't do that. And people think that I did that and it just kills me.”
Towards the end of the interview, Barr starting sounding like she more or less was taking responsibility for her headline-making actions, and Roseanne’s disastrous endgame.
"I should have been better, and I wasn't. And I caused a lot of pain. I know that, and that's the worse feeling in the world. I caused pain for my family, I caused pain for my mother, I caused pain to the two hundred out-of-work actors that I loved. And the crew and writers. I feel so bad that they gave me another chance and I blew it. But I did it,” said Barr.
"And what can I do now except say of course, I'm not a racist; I'm an idiot. And I might have done something that comes across as bigoted and ignorant, and I know that's how it came across. And you know, I asked for forgiveness because I do love all people, I really do.”
The day after the infamous tweet, Barr tried to pin some of the blame on Ambien, saying she was “ambien tweeting” late at night. Ambien’s parent company Sonafi was all too quick to clap back, saying in a statement that “racism is not a known side effect” of the sleep aid.
In the weeks since this podcast was recorded, ABC reached a deal to green light The Conners, a spinoff starring every Roseanne cast member except Barr.
Check out the full interview, here: https://soundcloud.com/user-642636263/episode-1-roseanne-barr