I realize that may be a shocking title for some of you, but I really can’t think of any other way to describe the phenomenon I’m writing about today. You all know who I’m talking about, though. We’ve all seen them, loudly voicing their support for Trump, the Second Amendment, and making America “great” again. And, most recently, railing against an imaginary double standard after Roseanne Barr posted an ugly comment on Twitter.
Okay, a little background for those of you living under a rock: Tuesday morning, Roseanne Barr went on a little Twitter rant, railing against liberals, tossing out conspiracy theories, saying Chelsea Clinton married a Soros (combining two right-wing bogey… people?), and best of all, smearing former Obama aide Valerie Jarrett as a radical Muslim and, wait for it, an ape. Good times.
Before we go any further, let me take a minute here to address the press way reported this story. Early on, several outlets ran with headlines that referred to what Barr said as “racially charged”. Let’s get one thing straight: “racially charged” is a garbage word. I can’t find a definition of the phrase on any dictionary site in which I have any confidence. But, that’s not the worst part; it’s also incredibly ambiguous. Calling what Barr said “racially charged” implies that there’s some gray area about whether her comment was racist. Believe me when I tell you that there is nothing “gray” about a white person calling a black person an “ape”. That slur has a long and inglorious history and it’s well past time it was retired.
Okay, back to the matter at hand. Barr, in what appears to be a rare moment of lucidity, must have realized just how bad her comment was. She quickly apologized and said she was “leaving Twitter”. If she was trying to head off any negative consequences, it didn’t work because ABC cancelled her show that same day.
Roseanne’s self-imposed Twitter exile was short-lived, though. She was back on a few hours later, asking fans not to defend the comment and blaming it on Ambien. And, by that evening, she was retweeting supportive messages from right-wing fan base and talking about fighting the cancellation. So much for conservative self-awareness.
Barr has had no shortage of people trumpeting their support for her in the aftermath of this disgusting, yet completely in-character escapade (for more on that, check out this Vox article). A Google search of the subject reveals everything from people not seeming to understand the racist nature of the “ape” comment to others employing the grade school tactic of “But, _____ did it first!”, posting photo-shopped images of Whoopi Goldberg at the 2017 Women’s March and whining that Bill Maher called 45 a “gorilla” and is still on the air. To be fair, Maher’s show should have been pulled. Not because he was rude to Trump, but for blatant animal cruelty. I mean, what could gorillas have done to deserve that comparison?
In what can only be termed an “interesting” development, the right-wing Outrage Brigade gained a new target for their ire during a recent episode of TBS’ “Full Frontal” when Samantha Bee said to Ivanka Trump,
“Do something about your dad’s immigration policies, you feckless c__t! He listens to you! Put on something tight and low-cut and tell your father to f___in’ stop it.”
What makes this interesting is that conservatives were more upset about the “c-word” than Bee’s reference to Trump’s creepy infatuation with his daughter. I’ve been wondering if they were so incensed by “feckless c__t” that they didn’t notice it or if this just one more thing they’re willing to let slide in their hero. The more I think about it, though, the less I want an answer.
Of course, conservatives jumped on this with both feet and continue to pound away even after Bee and TBS apologized. The White House has even gotten in on the act, with Mouth of Sauron Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders calling the comment “vile and vicious”. Right, and standing before the country and giving cover to a serial abuser and pathological liar is doing the Lord’s work. Nice one, Sarah.
For the record, I’m not telling women they shouldn’t be offended by Bee’s use of the “c-word” in reference to Ivanka. As a man, that’s not my place. But, I am saying that if you’re a Trump supporter, you should probably shut up about it. After the way you people used that word on Hillary during the campaign, your “outrage” has about as much credibility as a tweet from the unhinged Oompa Loompa currently occupying the White House.
Look, the bottom line here isn’t that a show right-wingers love got cancelled. It’s not that the press repeatedly refuses to call out racism even when something is plainly racist. It’s not even that some white people in this country have some how convinced themselves that they’re being persecuted. The real bottom line is that a lot of white people all butt hurt because they can’t spew racist garbage with impunity anymore. When you ignorant gits finally grasp this concept, things will get better for everyone. Until then, you might want to follow the advice of Mark Twain and keep your mouth shut and just appear stupid instead of opening it and removing all doubt.