Roseanne Barr thinks that anti-Semitism "played a large part" in her firing by ABC last year. The comedian was quickly fired and the Roseanne revival series was canceled after she posted a tweet comparing former Obama senior advisor Valerie Jarret, who is African American, to Planet of the Apes. Barr doesn't believe that she was given enough time to explain herself and says that the tweet was taken out of context. At the time of the incident, Barr blamed the tweet on the sleeping medication Ambien.
In a new interview, Roseanne Barr spoke about ABC making the quick decision to fire her over the racially charged tweet. Many believe that the tweet was racist, but Barr doesn't see it that way. Barr alleges that the tweet was misconstrued and that there is perhaps another reason why she was fired. She explains.
"I feel that what happened to me, a large part of it is anti-Semitism. I think it played a part - the fact that I was never allowed to explain what I meant - and what I meant was a commentary on Iran - so they purposely mischaracterized what I said and wouldn't let me explain... In haste they did something unprecedented that they've never done to any other artist. And at the base of that I think it's because I am the most vocal person about Israel and BDS."
ABC fired Roseanne Barr and cancelled the Roseanne revival series within hours of the aforementioned tweet being posted. A statement from the network said that Barr's remarks were, "abhorrent, repugnant and inconsistent with our values." The comedian believes that her original message was never allowed to be understood and that she was not given a chance to explain. She had this to say.
"What I said was mischaracterized purposely and repeatedly, so they didn't even know what I meant, but they wanted to shape it and they did - they said it was something racial, when it was actually something political. And I have never in my life done anything racist, and I think my career proves that. And they did it so quickly - to fire and label and slander my name. I think it had a lot to do with identifying with Israel."
The anti-Semitism call on ABC certainly isn't going to do Roseanne Barr any favors. Not long after the Roseanne revival series was canned, ABC announced that they were moving forward with the rest of the cast on a spin-off entitled The Conners. Barr had to sign off on the show and also signed away her rights from earning any compensation from it. The spin-off killed off her character, which was something that she thought was inappropriate.
As of this writing, ABC has yet to respond to Roseanne Barr's anti-Semitism accusations. Barr is expected to visit Israel later this month, with her friend and mentor Rabbi Shmuley Boteach. The comedian plans to speak at the Knesset, Israel's unicameral parliament, on January 31st. Boteach believes that Barr has apologized and shed enough tears, so she should be forgiven for her actions. You can read the rest of the interview with Roseanne Barr over at The Jerusalem Post.