Leesa K. Donner: Welcome to another libertynation.com Roundtable. I’m Leesa K. Donner, editor-in-chief. Each week Sarah, Scott, and Graham, and I chew the fat about a variety of liberty issues. Today we discuss the stunning cancellation of the hit comedy, Roseanne, after her tweet about Valerie Jarrett. So the question is, are you offended by Roseanne’s tweet or more offended that ABC canceled her show? Let’s begin with you, Graham. How high is your offense meter today?
Graham Noble: Well, Leesa, my offense meter fluctuates on a daily basis. I mean, I wake up in the morning offended and after coffee, I’m less offended. Then as the days goes on, through a combination of Twitter and the media, I get gradually more offended until I start drinking, and that keeps it under control until the next morning. In terms of Roseanne, you know, what really I found most offensive about it … and to me it goes without saying that ABC canceling her show because of some values that they’re apparently endearing to is, of course, nonsense, because there are plenty of people in the media, in the entertainment industry, and indeed in politics, who still have jobs despite saying some awful things or writing some awful things. It’s all kind of a bit phony as far as I’m concerned. It’s almost as if they were looking for an excuse to cancel the show.
Graham Noble: But what I’m most upset about, and I’m actually upset at Roseanne herself, and that is because we put the national nightmare of the Obama administration behind us. That period of time from 2008 to 2016 that the history books record as the Dark Ages was over and done with. We thought, well, unless it’s in regard to a criminal investigation, we’re never going to hear the names of these people ever again. And then, what does she have to do? She has to go and bring up the Jarrett creature in a tweet, and all of a sudden … To me it’s like one of those dreadful horror movies where the evil entity, whatever it is, is summoned by saying its name three times. Of course, as soon as she mentioned Valerie Jarrett, that’s it. Everyone else started talking about Valerie Jarrett, and before we knew it, bang, she’s back again. You know, it’s kind of like rubbing salt into the wounds. I didn’t want to hear about her again. Now all we have to do is hear about Valerie Jarrett. It’s like, you know, our PTSD, the wounds have been opened again. I mean, you don’t sneak up behind a combat veteran and burst a balloon or make helicopter noises. It’s just not acceptable behavior.
Leesa K. Donner: Okay. So you’re having Vietnam flashbacks. Certainly we can say-
Graham Noble: I’m waking up. I’ve got night sweats now, you know, thinking about Valerie Jarrett. I can’t handle it.
Leesa K. Donner: All right. Certainly we can say that comparing a black person to Planet of the Apes is not a very nice thing to say, but does it warrant this type of reaction, Scott?
Scott Cosenza: The job of a comedian is to be funny. In order to allow people to be funny, they have to be able to be not funny. You can’t just only allow for funny attempts that are successful from a comedian. This was an attempt by Roseanne Barr, who is a comedian, to be provocative and funny. Whether she failed at that or not doesn’t impact my sort of offense level. She is a comedian, and she’s one who is comfortable with all manner of off-color, crass, vulgar, you name it humor. If that’s something that you enjoy, then, you know, feel free to enjoy it.
Scott Cosenza: I don’t understand … I think what was offensive is that ABC has decided that there are some comedians who are allowed to say whatever they want, and as long as whatever they want is hostile to conservatives, libertarians, and Donald Trump, then they’re permitted to say whatever they want whether it’s funny or not. There are other comedians who if they say something that is critical of Obama or Democrats or their oftentimes lockstep political issues like abortion on demand paid for by taxpayers, and things like that, that those people are forbidden. That is why the American Broadcasting Company executives, I think, are really the offensive ones. Leesa, George Taylor was asked by Honorious, tell us why all apes are created equal, and he said, “Some apes, it seems, are more equal than others.”
Leesa K. Donner: All right, now, Sarah. Do you think Roseanne’s free speech has been flushed down the toilet, or do you think she got what she deserved?
Sarah Cowgill: Well, I don’t think ABC let any grass grow under their feet by whacking her off the network, but, you know, come on, let’s face it, that would have been the consumer. If the consumer had boycotted ABC, or the consumer wrote in and said we find this horrible and you’ve got to get this woman off your program, that would have been a different thing. Consumer is king. But when it’s just ABC with their heavy hand whacking her off, yes, I think she was fired because she spoke her mind freely. Yeah, it was stupid, but she’s a comedian. Comedians are stupid people sometimes. They offend everybody. Some of us were horribly offended, and some of us were not offended. I wasn’t offended whatsoever. I thought it was a dumb move on her part, but I think it’s a dumber move what ABC has just done.
Leesa K. Donner: Has anybody here watched the program?
Sarah Cowgill: Yes.
Graham Noble: No.
Scott Cosenza: The reboot, no. I saw the original, of course, but not the reboot.
Leesa K. Donner: Sarah, what did you think of it?
Sarah Cowgill: It’s about as well-rounded as you can get. You have a family in a fictional Illinois town that works in factories. They’re middle class. They’re AARP now, members. They have always struggled. They have raised children. Their children have now brought children home. They’re mixed racial. It touches on everything. It touches on LGBTQ in a positive light. It touches on interracial children and interracial families in a positive light. It allows for her sister on the show, the character that plays her sister on the show, to denounce Trump, whereas Roseanne and her husband on the show, they’re pro-Trump. It’s a well-rounded audience.
Leesa K. Donner: Okay. Now, Graham, do you think another network will swoop in and resurrect Roseanne?
Graham Noble: Well, I don’t think that’s going to happen. In a way, I would like to see it happen purely for the spectacle of more liberal heads exploding, really, but I’m not sure that that is going to happen. I’ve already seen some people suggesting that maybe Fox should pick it up. I just don’t know. It’s sad to say, but I think this is the final nail in the coffin, if you like, of Roseanne, the show.
Sarah Cowgill: You know what? The Last Man Standing got whacked by ABC, and they got picked up. Last Man Standing was a conservative show. It got picked up by Fox. I wouldn’t count her out yet.Keith Olbermann
Leesa K. Donner: Well, that’s what I think. I think somebody’s going to come along. It could be USA Network or something like that. They don’t care. They’ll take the hits and run it. The two tweets that Roseanne reposted noted that liberal Keith Olbermann had just been hired by ESPN. He had a tweet saying the following: Expletive you. Real Donald Trump, Nazi, Nazi. Expletive Nazi, Nazi racist. Nazi bigot go expletive yourself. Expletive-ing Nazi expletive-ers. That’s a pretty nasty tweet, is it not, Scott?
Scott Cosenza: Yeah. And just for people who don’t know, he didn’t actually type the word, expletive. You were deleting the expletives there in your quotation. Yes, it is. If I may comment to the previous question, Leesa, last week Netflix took a lot of heat from conservatives for offering a sweetheart payback deal to the Obamas. The Obama administration was … Obama was the recipient of many generous campaign contributions by Reed Hastings, the head of Netflix, who then appointed his wife as an ambassador in a move that … Ambassadorships are given out like special favors, unfortunately, in this country. One was given to his wife to pay back for that campaign contribution. They took a lot of heat over that. Perfect opportunity now for Netflix to snap up a guaranteed hit show at a bargain price, to be sure, and make a lot of conservatives happy, to say that, hey, we’ll play both sides of the aisle. That’s my free advice for the Netflix Corporation.
Leesa K. Donner: Any other thoughts before we say sayonara?
Sarah Cowgill: I just want to remind everybody that Bill Maher, about a year ago, went on television, on his television show, with Ben Sasse from Nebraska, Senator … gosh, I’m sorry if I got that wrong, but … They were discussing Nebraska and Bill Maher was discussing how much he hated it. They got into this whole gotta come when, you know, corn picking season is going on. That’s when all the action is. Bill Maher said on television, not just a tweet, on television, “I’m not your house N-word.” And nobody cared. Nobody cared. Where’s Bill Maher? His show’s still on. That’s where Bill Maher is, making money, having a good old time, because he’s a liberal.
Leesa K. Donner: Well, we’ll see what happens with Roseanne. Our last word today goes to our viewers. We know you’re out there. We know you’re watching because we see the numbers of people who are watching. But be bold, pick up your keyboard and comment in our Comment section on YouTube or here on our site.
Leesa K. Donner: For our legal affairs editor, Scott Cosenza, political correspondent Graham Noble, and our gal in the Heartland, the lovely national columnist, Miss Sarah Cowgill. I’m Leesa K. Donner, and this is LNTV, a project of libertynation.com.
Watch the LNTV Roseanne Rountable here.