May 30, 2018

UPDATE: It’s been fascinating to watch the many, fast-moving reactions to Roseanne Barr’s Twitter-fueled self-destruction, all in the space of one day. (Roseanne herself is asking fans not to defend her and blames her racist jibe at former Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett on tweeting at 2 a.m. while on Ambien. That sounds like a great idea. For all the criticism of the old Hollywood studio system, at least they understood how dangerous it was to let certain stars appear in public without a PR expert at their elbows to cover their mouths when they went off script.

It’s not as if ABC didn’t know what a ticking time bomb Roseanne was. They could have looked at her Twitter feed over the last few years, or her original series, where she went through showrunners and writers like a baby goes through diapers, doing pretty much the same thing to them. Speaking of that series, one of the reactions is that Viacom announced it was pulling her old show from its cable channels. That tweet was so powerful, it apparently went backward in time and tainted reruns that people have been watching for 20 years. It shows how deadly social media missteps have become: it took 60 women accusing Bill Cosby of sexual assault to get “The Cosby Show” erased from history; with Roseanne, it took one racist tweet.

But the first reaction came from ABC, which swiftly canceled her current series. That must have hurt, since it was a #1 hit at a time when networks are desperate for those. They didn’t have much choice, since most of the cast and creators refused to work with her anymore. It’s a shame all those people are unemployed due to the star’s lack of self-control (I know from experience that the folks on camera are only the tip of the iceberg in creating a TV show). Besides, it was doing something unique. Even as the left is trying to use Roseanne’s offensive tweet to tar all Trump supporters as racists, the show itself mostly hewed to the typical liberal slant of most sitcoms, but at least the writers tried to present a reasonably fair depiction of a blue collar, Middle-American, Trump-supporting family who had a legitimate beef with the way liberal policies had harmed them, like turning a blind eye to illegal immigration (a point once made by liberal hero, Caesar Chavez.)

Dan Conner (John Goodman) was a hard-working construction contractor nearing retirement age with no savings, and his wife needed a knee operation he couldn’t afford. In the season (now series) finale, even though he and his partner (who was African-American) bid the union minimum on a must-land drywall job, his competitors beat him out by hiring illegal immigrants. Dan didn’t blame the illegals; he said they were also desperate for work and were being exploited. But that still left him and his partner unable to support their families and at the end of their ropes.

This was an honest depiction of a real problem many Americans face. Yet when they complained about it, the left called them racists. In truth, they didn't "hate immigrants." The system failed them, and Trump simply promised to enforce longstanding immigration laws that protected them. That was a viewpoint that needed to be seen on network TV. Now, Roseanne’s erratic behavior has muddled it.

Other commenters mentioned the sharp contrast between the media cheering ABC’s axing of Roseanne and how other celebrities who’ve said offensive things about Republican women or Christians not only kept their shows but were celebrated for refusing to apologize. These included Keith Olbermann (now at Disney-owned ESPN after repeatedly calling Trump a "Nazi"), Joy Behar (who called Christians mentally ill on ABC’s “The View”), and the alleged comedian who viciously and unapologetically attacked my daughter and other female White House staffers at the Correspondents’ Dinner and was rewarded with praise for her “courage” and a Netflix series. But MSNBC took the “Clueless” Award by bringing on Joy Reid and asking what someone has to do to get fired from a network these days (click the link for a refresher course on what Joy did on Twitter, yet she’s still on MSNBC.)

Granted, many of the liberal comments cited weren’t racist, but were incredibly offensive, and in some cases, were based on perpetuating ugly, negative, false stereotypes about large groups of people different from them. Plus, you could ask Condoleezza Rice, Clarence Thomas, Dr. Ben Carson and other prominent black conservatives how many times they’ve been the targets of racist slurs by liberals in the media and how many of them lost their jobs over it.

Still other commenters pointed out that many of the same media figures who praised ABC for taking swift action to silence Roseanne over making a statement that offended and alienated viewers were just last week savaging the NFL for infringing on the players’ free speech right to make a statement that offends and alienates viewers. At least Roseanne had the excuse that she made her offensive statement on her own time, not right in the middle of the show.

Again, none of this is to defend what Roseanne tweeted. Everyone should be aware that they are risking their jobs if their behavior offends and alienates customers and reflects badly on their employer (I explained this very concept last week in talking about the NFL controversy – and yes, many Americans sincerely find the players’ disrespect for the flag and the National Anthem to be deeply offensive.) The First Amendment protects you from government censorship, not from the consequences of your words.

Liberals who are trying to blame Roseanne’s tweet on the “culture created by Trump” conveniently forget that they’ve spent the past half-century or more deliberately shredding all the cultural niceties that used to prevent people from saying any stupid, obscene or offensive thing that popped into their heads. Looking over all the offensive, outrageous, insulting, racist, etc., statements over the past couple of years, it’s obvious to me that society would be better off if people on both sides not only stopped tweeting while on Ambien, but also resurrected a long-discarded piece of old-fashioned wisdom that I used to see on plaques and bumper stickers all the time when I was a kid, back before the 1960s “cultural revolution” removed all taboos on speech and behavior (except the ones the left would like to keep to silence their opponents). It went like this:

“Be sure brain is engaged before putting mouth in gear.”


In stunning news, an extremely ill-advised tweet sent out by Roseanne on Tuesday has resulted in the immediate cancelation of her newly-revived show on ABC. As much as we might disagree politically with former (and, come to think of it, current) Obama consigliere Valerie Jarrett, and as deliriously happy as we might be that she isn’t anywhere near the White House these days, I’m sure we can also agree that Roseanne’s description of her as a genetic combination of the Muslim Brotherhood and an “ape” is indefensible. Though Roseanne apologized quickly, it was inevitable that her show, as well-executed and timely and popular and lucrative (and FUNNY) as it is, would be canceled, considering the racist connotations of a remark like that.

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Reaction was immediate. FOX News media analyst Howard Kurtz described this as “a spectacular self-immolation by Roseanne Barr after an equally spectacular comeback.” Cast member Wanda Sykes announced that she would not be coming back to the show. Sara Gilbert, who plays –- played –- one of her three adult kids, tweeted that the comment was “abhorrent” and not reflective of “the beliefs of our cast and crew or anyone associated with our show.” Her talent agency, ICM Partners, has announced that it will no longer represent her. Roseanne was already known for being controversial and edgy, but this was obviously over the edge.

Predictably, anti-Trump media outlets are already trying to tie the President and all his supporters to this comment (and his compulsive Twitterstorms don’t help). Joe Scarborough of MSNBC implied as much when he tweeted, “Even in the Age of Trump, there are red lines that can never be crossed. This is one.” Get ready for an escalation of “Trump-is-a-racist” commentary –- which is also indefensible, though the media will get away with it as usual. Roseanne’s stupid remark just made it easier for the media to perpetuate their lie.

I’m not defending Roseanne’s aforesaid stupid remark in any way, but it’s hard to talk about this without mentioning the double standard for those on the left and right. To cite just one example, Kathy Griffin was condemned for tweeting a horrific picture of herself holding the bloody severed “head” of President Trump, and her career appeared to be over for a time, but now she’s back on tour for her many fans, who eat up that sort of thing and love her for being so viciously anti-Trump. Over the years, I've seen numerous left-of-center tweets that were racist and sexist (and, of course anti-Christian), but as they were aimed at conservatives, they got little if any attention. So, will Roseanne ever live this down? Not likely; odds are almost overwhelming that with this she has blown her career to dust.

There’s something about Twitter that INFECTS a lot of people, perhaps millions of us, like an insidious virus that destroys the pathways between the brain and the fingers. He who lives by the Tweet can die by the Tweet. The one way to fight the infection is to take “the pause that refreshes” and think before tweeting. The goal is not to avoid offending all people --- this will not in your wildest dreams be possible, or even necessarily desirable --- but to make sure you’ve chosen yours words carefully to communicate exactly want you intend to say while anticipating and accepting any potential consequences. Anyone who can’t do that should do what Roseanne says she has now done (too late): Leave Twitter.


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Comments 1-25 of 25

  • Mark Grist

    06/19/2018 04:09 AM

    It is difficult as a Christian to not take offense to the constant onslaught by the liberal left. The plain facts of what an abortion does, stops a beating heart; ends an innocent life that God created. It is deplorable and inexcusable. If people were graphically shown what an abortion looks like, what the fetus looks like at the time of an abortion, would that make a difference? If people were to visualize the sexual acts that gay men participate in would they not be repulsed? Is that not abhorrent? Those that drink the PC cool-aid, in my opinion, are fakes and I do not believe them. I feel it is a mask and they are pretending that they do not have the same biasses many of us have. I know it is wrong to, but I'm not going to pretend I don't have them. (my biggest prejudice is towards stupid people-the nonthinkers who fail to realize or notice...) There obviously are a few who truly are able to love their fellow man, as God commands. Jesus said that this second most important commandment is similar to the first commandment. I have trouble with this one. As groups, I have prejudices towards certain ethnicities, and homosexuals. On a person to person basis, these don't seem to be an issue. One of my best friends, we've been friends for 45 yrs., is homosexual, though he doesn't live the lifestyle. I have another friend who is gay, and I have no problem hugging when we say goodbye. A neighbor in our apt. bldg. is gay and I enjoy our conversations and am looking to further our friendship because he is a good guy and I like talking with him. So, I don't feel I am homophobic. I don't approve of their sexual lifestyle, and certainly am not going to "go there" by thinking of what they do. I don't hate them as individuals, but I hate the agenda of those who force their beliefs on others who do not agree with them. The 2nd friend I mentioned told me he hates those gay men who parade, fyi. It amazes me that God allows abortions, but I cannot relate very well to His perfectness (holiness; righteousness) nor even understand His tolerance and His patience. I try very hard to see it from His point-of-view and that helps. He knows however what will happen on the day of judgment. I fear God! I remind myself that He loves everyone, and those who don't even believe in Him are still under His blessing and provision. It seems those who are yelling and screaming, rolling on the floor and throwing a fit, like spoiled children, are seeking the acceptance of man, when they are already accepted by the Almighty God and seen as equal by Him. They are not easily accepted by man because their way of life is unnatural and we sinners do not like things or people who are different than us. It is clear that society is going the way the Bible says it would. Christians should be sharing the Good News. Others' concern should be whether one is going to hell or not, instead of trying to manage whether one speaks their mind or doesn't agree with them. Social media seems to be the device that is leading to the demise of our society. People are sheep, and it is disheartening to watch it happen. Thanks for what you do Mike. I'd like to take this opportunity to say I was for you, but the idiots chose McCain. He was a better choice for those of our like mind, but our country had already slid down the slope and "hollow-man" was elected. I understand why many voted for him because he is black (though also half-white... humm, curious) Again, I'd have greatly preferred you, but the country was sick of anyone perceived as a politician. Trump being elected is hilarious to me, and is a backlash from the PC nonsense that most are fed-up with. Still, many could make the proper call when faced with a decision between, what a comedian called a "racist dope" and one who is "the devil" and a "made-man." I'd love to see a third party in our political system. The American Party for the 60% of us in the middle. (Marry who you want, just no abortion, and it would seem we have to start with limiting the definition-any chance for the Life at Conception Act?) I'd love to have 'Mike' be the candidate, though I think many are afraid of Christianity due to their misunderstanding of it. They have issues with it, but have never read the Bible... uh, duh! I wish it was possible for a third party that could bridge the gap and not attack the other party when they are in office. The repubs have blown it for many years, and the dems are not the party they once were. I feel it is who believes the lie harder. The repub pov of the american dream doesn't seem possible anymore and seem to just protect the rich, and the dems are only interested in the victory and use those to keep themselves in power while keeping the same under their boot. Those last two points are too vast to try to summarize, but hopefully you get my gist True to form, I've gone on and on. After getting worked-up though, I come around by accepting that God is in control despite all appearances, and like all things in life it comes down to whether we'll ( I'll...) trust Him. Thank God He is Good !!! whew !

  • Sue Brauer

    06/04/2018 07:22 AM

    Agree! Thanks for wise words. Since we know who the real enemy is and can trace his work, inch by inch, through time; all this isn’t surprising...just sad. And the worse part is we know the answer and how to overcome!! I am thankful we have those in office who are trying. Cyrus...Trump??? Similarities. SDG

  • Nancy J Lange

    06/02/2018 03:15 PM

    Nancy Lange What really burns my butt is that there’s such a bias. Trump says “p——“ and he is vilified. Samantha Bee calls Ivanka a “feckless cu—“ and she gets more audience for her stupid ranting show. Bill Maher calls Trump the son of an “orangutang,” but Roseann makes a joke about someone and loses her show. S. Bee went on to imply some sort of incestuous relationship between Trump and Ivanka and said Pres should “f—-ing” stop his immigration ideas. The whole thing is SO one-sided it makes me afraid for all Conservatives, who Joy Behar called “mentally ill.” I thought “deplorable” was bad, but it continues.

  • Shirlee Rogers

    06/01/2018 08:40 AM

    You are right as well....for the last 10+yrs, it seems that a liberal idiot or DEM can say just about anything they desire & it is fine. I believe it was Robert DeNiro who said we "need to grow some" annual White House Presser dinner. I am just so sick of the double standard. I have never really watched Roseanne on a weekly basis...but her removal was just wrong. Perhaps ABC & snowflakes should, in the words of DeNiro, "grow some"!

  • Sally Jaramillo

    05/31/2018 01:06 PM

    I am so thankful that you have this site for me to read on a daily basis. It is so wonderful to read your words of wisdom in an intelligent, insightful way, while using common sense and always in a forgiving way. We don't have that much anymore outside if church and this world is becoming more and more angry every day. Thank you Mr. Huckabee. You are greatly appreciated

  • carla maple

    05/31/2018 12:34 PM

    The world saddens me now days .. Social media has made us less social and more vicious to one another Perhaps format like twitter need to be removed I voted for Trump but I do wish he would stop with his commenting on ever thing! and stick to doing the job we hired him for. No one should ever make fun of another person race, gender religion ,disability EVER but the media now days take things to the extreme Why has the view not be canceled Disney has disappointed me and my family by allowing this to continue truth be known 3/4 of the shows on TV need to be taken off the air.

  • Nancy Smith

    05/31/2018 11:12 AM

    Geraldo said no one should be able to say those things about an "African American woman." But isn't Valerie Jarrett an Iranian Mulism woman? She's not African American at all!! Maybe the comment was bad, but I think it shows racism to put Jarrett in a group to which she doesn't belong for the sake of politics.

  • Rance Chilafoux

    05/31/2018 08:58 AM

    Roseanne Barr, not impressed with your show or herself and why she was allowed a TV show to begin with. Is this a hoped for liberal agenda against Trump? Unfortunately – thankfully, Roseanne with just a little too far even for the liberals. Mike my friend :-) enjoyed your story, makes a lot of sense.

  • mary mancini

    05/31/2018 08:55 AM

    FYI - Bill Cosby is still on a channel called "Bounce". I am glad Roseanne is facing consequences for her actions, I think the same should go for Bill Cosby, now that he has been found guilty. I am a Christian and a conservative, and for the most part a Trump supporter. (I do wish he would stay off twitter). I have long been an admirer of you.

  • Jason Hunter

    05/31/2018 08:54 AM

    We have become way too thin skinned in America. Yes I don’t like Roseanne Barr or her show but for this to happen over what she said is ridiculous. She was most likely joking and her comment should have been taken in jest. Maybe they should put on some Christ centered show in its place. I bet it would do amazing! America needs to repent and put God first before it falls all the way into the pit of Hell.

  • Marsha Wright

    05/30/2018 10:36 PM

    I agree with ur points, and her tweet was classless. All of this is hateful, mean, and so wrong. The real issue is explained in a book we studied in 1960's called " ANIMAL FARM" it was a parody on SOCIALISM, & COMMUNISM. The quote that applies in this situation is, "some pigs r MORE EQUAL others"! The reaction to poor behavior should be EQUAL. The VIEW, late evening shows, Washington Press Awards, etc. 1st Amendment is protection for all. Again, some pigs r MORE EQUAL!

  • Beverly Newsome

    05/30/2018 07:08 PM

    I am saddened to hear of your show being canceled. Our country needs good comedy and from the first show, I was proud of your show. They did the same thing to Last MAN STANDING. I stop watching Fox when Tim and family came on and as a middle class American I understood all the "family" problems. As the tough lady you are Keep doing "YOUR" thing. The comedian on theCorrespondents dinner should have been escourted off the stage. She was vile. Even people in the room were squirming. But It's okay because the woman was a den and SARAH WAS A REP. AND REPRESENTATIVE of our PRESENT.Why not fire Jamele, Look at blood dripping Kathy G. and etc.

  • Jean Popovich

    05/30/2018 04:36 PM

    Your comments on the cancelling of all of Roseanne’s shows are exactly my feelings!
    Funny thing is that the disgusting vulgar comments that were made at the correspondents dinner directly at Sarah Sanders were one of the very first thoughts that came to my mind! I was appalled that was allowed to continue!! But That was ok with the left....and most of media... cuz the sorry excuse for a comedian was a liberal Obama supporter along with Behar!!

  • Michael Nestor

    05/30/2018 04:31 PM

    Had a thought today, that like Rosanne, I should not print in the public forum.....Here goes. The liberal left(socialists, commies,Democracy destroyers, or whatever they are), are constantly trying to take God out of our society. They cannot justify their truly abhorrent behaviors that God has condemned, if they acknowledge his existence.They push for no more prayer, or Bibles in our schools. Instead, they teach our children that we all "evolved" from apes(thus denying Genesis 1:1). If Rosanne compared v.j. to an ape(her ancestors according to all of her left-wing cronies and darwin), shouldn't this be a compliment?!

  • Faun Max

    05/30/2018 04:27 PM

    I still support Rosie, not what she said but that fact that she said it and did immediately apologize. How sad when a person is no longer allowed to make a mistake in this country. “ Land of the Free” I don’t think so anymore. Liberals are making sure if that.

  • Bev Rider

    05/30/2018 03:44 PM

    All of this based on a comment by Rosanne Barr, inappropriately made by some standards, yet no one bothers with all the crap that is spewed on The View on a daily basis ! They have run more people in the ground than Rosanne ever could. This show is given superior treatment because it is backed by leftist views. And of course We all know if you support Trump for even a second you are hated. I also noticed that the black kneeling protest has made its way into the new season of Queen Sugar on Own. I think Politics should be kept out of ANY and ALL television shows. We are bombarded with this political stuff EVERY day on the News, on Social Media ! Keep it out of the Shows on TV ! Supporting Trump DOES NOT MAKE YOU RACIST ! He is doing more for the black population than any President has in years. The Media has divided black and white for so many years. It’s brainwashing at its finest. Stop believing what you hear in the news, accept people for who they are and not who the media tells you they are. I have many black friends and We don’t act like that. We accept and trust each other as We are, that’s why We are friends. We don’t listen to the division of the media, We don’t play the race card about anything and everything, every five minutes. When you stop letting people and the media divide you by color you will be much happier. Everyone says thing they regret, as I am sure is the case with Rosanne right now. No one is exempt from making statements that don’t sit well with everyone. I have done it and I am not perfect and neither is anyone else.

  • Gina OBrien

    05/30/2018 03:38 PM

    Thank you for always being vocal!! It’s much appreciated!!


    05/30/2018 03:28 PM

    Totally agree as usual Mike! You're right on the money. The lefties can get away with calling Trump an ape and your daughter, (of whom I'm a HUGE fan). Ivanka and Milania all sorts of nasty names with never a peep from the media. We all hate racism, but let's be fair to BOTH sides!

    PS. You were my first choice for president. ;)

  • Virginia Hoover

    05/30/2018 03:20 PM

    Thank you for a well-written, composed and intelligent commentary. I have a great deal of respect for you and your daughter, Sarah, and I would like to congratulate you both on your dignity and grace. I appreciate that you did not support or defend Ms. Barr’s crass remark, but rather focused on the hypocrisy of ABC’s and the left’s reaction. Governor Huckabee, we need more people like you in this country. I am a big fan.

  • Nancy Cornish

    05/30/2018 02:57 PM

    I think it was very unfair that they canceled the show. President Trump has been disparaged, slurred and made fun of on many Tv shows but none of them have been canceled. In my opinion, what's fair for the goose is fair for the gander. If they couldn't cancel the shows that are biased against our President then they should not cancel Roseanne's show. At least she did apologize for what she said. No one has ever apologized for making fun of President Trump.

  • Robbie

    05/30/2018 02:51 PM

    I don't think she said anything many of us were thinking. If people in power can get away with murder don't believe her comment was anyway untruthful

  • wanda caldwell Glasgow

    05/30/2018 02:31 PM

    As always Mike Huckabee is right on spot. His wisdom is out there being a lesson to us all. Thank you sir. Might I add to all those perfect sinless leftist go ahead and cast that first stone! Forgiveness is from the best person. Forgive and speak no more of the sin. Hello?

  • Laura Mize

    05/30/2018 01:57 PM

    I do not support any racist remark at any time. However, had Roseanne used it on someone not associated with our former (worthless) president, the show would still be on the air. My opinion.

  • wanda caldwell

    05/30/2018 01:35 PM

    As always Mike Huckabee is right on spot. His wisdom is out there being a lesson to us all. Thank you sir. Might I add to all those perfect sinless leftist go ahead and cast that first stone! Forgiveness is from the best person. Forgive and speak no more of the sin. Hello?

  • chris thomas

    05/30/2018 01:11 PM

    It just saddens me that 'conservatives' jumped on the Roseanne bandwagon anyway. She is not, nor has she ever been a conservative. Her show is not a conservative value show, despite what so many want it to be. We can talk about media bias and double standards, which exist, but in the end just because some one happens to be a Trump supporter does not make them conservative and does not mean we need to support them. Is this the age of Trump conservatism?