I was never Roseanne Barr's fan. I never watched the show way back when, but to millions of people, it spoke to them.
Barr took to Twitter to say stupid things as millions of people do every day. We are in some sort of warped Victorian vortex where everyone has virgin eyes and virgin ears, and I am surprised that people do not use their smart phones to post videos of them fainting when they see or hear something offensive.
Barr crossed a line, however. I don't care about other people's conspiracy theories, but when you deliberately place a racist remark on a public forum, you have freedom of speech to do it -- and people have the freedom to be angry.
She should have been fired, but ABC should not have cancelled the show.
No one else on the program were doing the same thing. You have people who depend on a pay check, and what ABC did was itself offensive.
Kevin Spacey did something much worse than babble barbaric dreck -- House of Cards was a popular show, and it was decided to kicked him to the curb as the rest of the people kept their jobs.
When Valerie Harper had a dispute with NBC, they fired her, then rebranded the show Valerie's Family before calling it The Hogans. It did just fine without her. Charlie Sheen was removed from Two and a Half Man...and was promptly replaced by a younger model and the show marched on.
Even when headliners leave because they want to do something else, we have shows re-jig things and go on for years more success. The Good Wife lost its lead, and was reborn as the vastly improved The Good Fight. The Closer also lost its lead, and was remade to the superior Major Crimes.
In both cases, I preferred the second version more than the first.
It is not as if there is no talent on Roseanne. John Goodman, Sara Gilbert, and Laurie Metcalf are more than capable of taking over the reins, and reinventing the show in a different direction, all while remaining true to the Blue Collar vibe.
But ABC was looking for an excuse to bury a show that tapped into something that didn't fit into their worldview.
Barr handed it to them on a silver platter.
If they were truly horrified by her blanket statements, they would have turfed her, and then not give a blanket punishment to the cast and crew who did nothing to deserve it.
They could have let the Connors grow in a different direction.
That would have generated interest and publicity.
And it would have set an better example that you don't function on a binary level of all or none...