ROSEANNE BARRED

The cancellation of Roseanne is a victory for no one. We think that silencing people, using fear to combat ignorance, is a good idea.. it’s not; it’s a slippery slope tactic that doesn’t bode well for society at large. It’s no different from the fascist SJW/Antifa mindset that has polluted many college campuses and stifled free-speech and the free-marketplace of ideas (good ones and bad ones). The whole thing is just silly to me. Who hasn’t said something stupid that they regret in this life — whether in public or in private. Yet how quick we are (collectively-speaking) to attack.

Moreover, if the show isn’t rebooted, then this cancellation would serve as a punishment for the entire cast, all of the others working on the show, the fans who watched it (I am not one of them; not my type of series at all), etc. — how is that just? The whole move was just a short-sighted, emotionally-laden, over-the-top, media-hyped tactic that divides more than it unites. We win through open dialogue, free discussion, and public rebuke (that isn’t tantamount to costing someone their job in these types of cases). We never win through heavy-handed measures like this, the kind that does nothing more than reflect a mob mentality (seeing that too many are willing to cast the first stone when they really should have walked away).

If Roseanne promoted violence, hate, destruction of property, etc., it would be different. She was simply being a comedienne, wasn’t at all funny, and made a comment in very poor taste/judgment (as many other comedians/ comediennes and other “stars” have at some point or another in their careers). She, in all likelihood, was not trying to demean all black people but was making a joke about the looks of a specific woman and her politics (as wrong as the joke or dig was). Note that similar comparisons were made regarding Michael Jackson and the female PotA character and it wasn’t deemed racist [it was wrong, demeaning, etc., so not justifying it, but pointing it out as it relates to her likely underlying intent, i.e. a (foolish) personal attack rather than a racist attack on black America].

Finally, I once had a classmate in college tell me (in the classroom, after the class ended) that he identified as a neo-nazi, and that he hated black people (he was being serious). When I explained to him that I was of mixed-African descent (not readily apparent to many), he was shocked. Rather than running to big brother (the professor, a guidance counselor, or university administration), seeking to get him kicked out of the class or expelled, I engaged in a dialogue with him. He explained that he and his mother were the only white people in his community and that she was often threatened, and he was beaten up often, and that this identification gave him a sense of strength/identity/power. I asked if I seemed like the type to do this to him and he readily admitted no. I asked whether the other black people in the class, or on campus, acted like that or were likely to treat him like that, and he admitted no. I explained that there are millions of black people in this country and if all of them acted like those who persecuted him, there would be war on the streets — and yet we see no such thing. I went on to explain that most black people would abhor what he went through. Now I may not have had any long-term effect on him but trying to converse with him in a manner that doesn’t further make him feel oppressed, beaten down, or attacked (which is how he would likely have felt if I ran to get big brother involved), was (for me at least) the right decision. He remained quite cordial towards me for the rest of the semester, so I hold out hope for him (never saw him again thereafter). I’ve had similar, in person, discussions with people holding racist views and never regretted it. The fact that they often continued to dialogue, to reason, was always a good sign to me. I don’t plan to change my methodology but wish other people would on this matter. Do you really think the black community is better served by having Roseanne cancelled? I’d rather watch her have a frank, heart-felt, on air, sit down dialogue with a respectable black leader (Sharpton and Co. need not apply) — but that’s just me.

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