Roseanne Barr and Donald Trump: The Odd Couple
Roseanne Barr, a TV comedian, now 65 years-old, is riding high. Her family sitcom, which originally ran on ABC for nine years — 1988 through 1997 — is featured again on the TV sets of Americans.
In fact, the two-episode debut, “Roseanne,” about a working-class family, scored huge ratings on its renewal on March 27th, attracting more than 18 million viewers. Featured in the reboot are its two original stars, the wisecracking Roseanne, of course, and her partner-in-comedy, the lovable and talented John Goodman.
In the current program, Roseanne is a grandmother who voted for U.S. President Donald Trump. This aspect reflects reality since she has bragged about “voting for Trump” in the 2016 election.
Isn’t this cute? President Trump personally called Roseanne to congratulate her on her program’s high ratings debut. He also made sure the world knew about it. Sounds like fake news to me!
Question: Is Roseanne’s support of Trump genuine or was it contrived to maximize publicity for her new TV show? In 2012, Roseanne ran for president on a Green Party ticket. That’s right, the very liberal, lefty-leaning Green Party of Jill Stein.
Shifting from Green Party politics to sucking up to Trump, the enabler of the grasping 1 Percent Gang, is the mother of all leaps. I think this big switch-up was a calculated, shabby move on Roseanne’s part. (A new report by Suisse Credit Bank shows the 1 Percent Gang owns more of the world’s assets than the bottom 99 percent combined.)
Roseanne, who is now worth $80 million, lives in Hilo on the Big Island of Hawai’i in a huge mansion on a 46-acre farm. That wasn’t always the case. Roseanne was raised under modest circumstances in Salt Lake City, Utah.
Roseanne began her show business career as a stand-up comic in 1980. One extremely low point for her came in 1990, on July 25th, at a nationally-aired major league baseball game, between the San Diego Padres and the Cincinnati Reds. She chose to deliberately trash our national anthem, the “Star-Spangled Banner.” She belted it out in an insulting off-key manner. To add insult to injury, Roseanne finished it off with a gross obscenity by “grabbing her crotch and then spitting on the ground.”
The fans roundly booed Roseanne’s crude performance and the national TV audience didn’t like it either. Generally, the response was one of utter disgust. San Diego is a military town. The stunt was a mega-disaster and almost sank Roseanne’s career. Somebody commented: “She’s lucky she got out of there alive.”
If anything, Roseanne is resilient. She has bounced back from the National Anthem fiasco, but deep scars remains. She now has her own star on the “Hollywood Walk of Fame.” Some will respond by saying: “So what! Rin Tin Tin, a dog, also has a star there?”
Roseanne definitely has a serious political itch. It was revealed again in a tongue-in-cheek performance way back on Mother’s Day, May 8, 2010, in Washington, D.C., when she took the opportunity to announce her candidacy for president. See the video at: https://vimeo.com/11585318
The setting was a peace rally at John Marshall Park, near the National Mall. It was sponsored by CODE PINK, a peace and justice organization and clearly on the Left side of the political spectrum. I’m sure CODE PINK organizers had no idea what Roseanne was going to say.
Medea Benjamin, CODE PINK’s co-founder, introduced her to the small, but lively, crowd gathered there. She stepped up to the microphone and pulled out her written remarks. Pure Roseanne anarchy followed.
For the most part, Roseanne’s comments were, as expected, funny. She had the crowd laughing with her. She said she would “outlaw b… s…!” She also got plenty of laughs when she underscored that, besides running for president, she was also going to toss her hat into the race for prime minister of Israel!
In a heartbeat, Roseanne’s dark side came out yet again. She proposed bringing back the — the guillotine! She labeled it “blessed and holy.” Lethal was the punishment that she wanted to inflict on the wrong doers in our society. That bloody notion brought out groans from the audience. (During France’s “Reign of Terror” about 16,500 victims were executed via the guillotine.)
Roseanne’s voting for Trump in 2016, and embracing CODE PINK in 2010, is yet another contradiction in terms. Maybe her politics simply depends on which way the wind is blowing? She bizarrely tweeted on March 31st, that “Trump has freed so many children held in bondage to pimps.” See “Fox News.”
To prove she has a serious side, however, Roseanne will be one of the 21 speakers at the all-day “Jerusalem Post Annual Conference,” set for New York City on Sunday, April 29, 2018.
I don’t intend to tell the folks sponsoring the NYC event what to do, but out of a sense of caution, they might want to pre-screen Roseanne’s speech before she gives it. Having somebody standing by to cut off the sound, might turn out to be a prudent measure, too! If the past is prologue, you can’t be too careful with our wisecracking, belief-shifting comic — Roseanne!
Top photo of Roseanne Barr singing the National Anthem is a YouTube screenshot
Bill Hughes is a native of Baltimore. He’s an attorney, author, professional actor and hobbyist photographer. In his salad days, he worked on the docks as a longshoreman. Bill also played on three championship soccer teams: sandlot with Jules Morstein; high school at Calvert Hall; and college at the University of Baltimore.