Roseanne Barr’s racist tweet about former Barack Obama advisor Valerie Jarrett caused ABC to drop the reboot of her ’80s sitcom “Roseanne” back in May. And after some failed apologies, the comedian is discussing the issue once again.
In a phone interview with Jerusalem Post columnist Shmuley Boteach on recorded the day after Barr’s firing, she wound up breaking down in tears recounting the fallout from the tweet which said, “muslim brotherhood & planet of the apes had a baby=vj.”
“I didn’t mean what they think I meant. And that’s what’s so painful,” Barr explained on the June 24 podcast episode which also explores her Jewish religion. “But I have to face that it hurt people. When you hurt people even unwillingly there’s no excuse. I don’t want to run off and blather on with excuses. But I apologize to anyone who … felt offended and who thought that I meant something that I, in fact, did not mean. It was my own ignorance, and there’s no excuse for that ignorance. But I didn’t mean it the way they’re saying I meant it. And that’s really weird too because if I don’t speak for myself, who will speak for me?”
Barr, who further said it was “so painful” that the people started “changing the words of what I said totally” explained she didn’t purposely liken Jarrett to a monkey and noted her Black family members.
“I have Black children in my family … I’m a lot of things, a loud mouth and all that stuff. But I’m not stupid for God’s sake,” she says through tears. “And I never would have wittingly called any Black person and say they are a monkey. I just wouldn’t do that. I didn’t do that. And if people think that I did that and it just kills me. I didn’t do that. … And if they do think that, I’m just so sorry that I was so unclear and stupid. I’m very sorry. But I don’t think that and I never would do that. I have loved ones who are African American, … I just can’t stand it.
“I’ve made a huge error and I told ABC when they called me,” she continued. “They said, ‘What were you possibly thinking to say this egregious and unforgivable thing you said?’ Now, first of all, I had already apologized and removed it by then cause it wasn’t up very long — you know sometimes you reread your tweets, especially [Memorial Day] weekend at 2 a.m. on Ambien. And that’s no excuse, but that is what was real.”
Barr said she does not excuse what she wrote but said she had regrets before she lost her gig. The comic also lamented the fact that she “lost everything” and became a “hate magnet.”
“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,” she concluded. “And I’ve made myself a hate magnet. And as a Jew, it’s just horrible. It’s horrible.”
But no matter how “horrible” Barr feels about the situation, her tears haven’t won her the favor of critics.
“Yes she did, she feels remorse for getting caught. She’s been spewing this load of hate for years.”
“She never says what she ‘really meant.’ Not buying it.”
“The only reason Barr feels sorry is because ABC fired and essentially made her all but unemployable. She’ll never be picked up a network again.”