Saturday, June 02, 2018

Michael Moore Offers Compassion, Insight on Roseanne Barr: She 'Seems to Be Suffering From Some Sort of Madness'


Michael Moore
21 hrs
I have known Roseanne Barr for over 25 years. I've known her as Roseanne Barr, Roseanne Arnold, just "Roseanne", then back to Roseanne Barr. I've spent time in her home, criss-crossed the country with her to help remove George W. Bush from the White House, appeared on her shows, been there for her when she needed something, and connected her with one of my producers who did an insightful, one-of-a-kind documentary into the genius and the tragedy that is Roseanne Barr.
On Tuesday Roseanne posted hateful, slanderous tweets directed at four people: George Soros, Valerie Jarrett, Chelsea Clinton and me. A few hours later, she was fired by ABC.
For the past few years, Roseanne has been posting the craziest stuff on Twitter, like claiming Hillary was part of a child sex abuse ring being run out of a DC pizza place. She's claimed that the Clintons have murdered people. And anyone who criticizes Benjamin Netanyahu is a "nazi."
Roseanne seems to be suffering from some sort of madness. It's more than just saying she's a racist. She operates in the same sewer of lies, conspiracy theories and bigotry that's been rising in America for years and that has now succeeded in electing our current president. Totally nuts.
Here's who's not crazy: Donald J. Trump.
Trump, though he shows all the signs of being absolutely bonkers, is not insane. He's the real deal. His racism and hate is real, it's well thought-out, he's the true master of manipulation, a brilliant performance artist, and an evil genius. He outsmarted a nation of liberals and Democrats and won the White House by losing the actual vote of the people. He neutered and then destroyed the Grand Old Republican Party. He knows exactly what he is doing.
Roseanne, on the other hand, is a person who long ago broke through and brought an authentic voice of working women and men to television via one of the greatest TV series of all time. It was groundbreaking because the TV industry had historically either ignored, ridiculed or patronized those of us who grew up in the working class. Roseanne changed that.
But she is also a damaged soul. Most people don't know that she has suffered her entire life from a massive head injury she received during a serious car accident when she was a child. Her brain injuries were immense and she spent months in the hospital struggling to recover.
I also have no idea what it was like to grow up, as she did, as a Jewish girl in Salt Lake City. Not a tolerant state, to be sure. She told me how her parents, who owned an apartment building, were asked by the U.S. government after World War II if they would be willing to house Holocaust survivors who had come to the U.S. as refugees. Her parents took dozens in, and Roseanne's childhood was spent with these survivors as her "family." "The stories they told me," she said, "were filled with unimaginable horror. I've always wondered what effect that had on me as a little girl."
Now, sadly, for the past few years, Roseanne has been in a downward spiral, ranting like crazy on Twitter, spreading conspiracy theories, attacking the people she used to love, supporting Trump, and being just an outright hateful and racist person. It has been a difficult decline to witness. She has repeatedly attacked me, and on Tuesday, after calling George Soros a "Nazi" (he's a Jew and a Holocaust survivor), Valerie Jarrett an offspring "of the Muslim Brotherhood and Planet of the Apes," and saying that Chelsea was "married to" a Nazi relative of George Soros, she then retweeted a disgusting new word for me because I have spoken out against the Netanyahu government and its killing of Palestinians -- "#JewHater". Nonstop insanity and sickness.
I guess there might be 20 million Americans (out of 320 million) who probably agree with her. She has thrown down with the lowest of the low, and who knows if she’ll ever recover from this descent into her own personal hell.
To close, I want to say just how great the new Roseanne show was. It was funny but brutal to watch because it showed how our system of greed has hurt millions of families like the Connors of Illinois. On the final episode last week, Roseanne was addicted to opioids because she couldn't afford the knee surgery she needed, so she suffered along in agonizing pain. Dan, her husband, in order to raise money for her surgery, decided to take a non-union job -- and Roseanne berates him for doing so and letting his union brothers and sisters down. There are a couple quick knocks on Trump, making it clear that the real Roseanne was not writing or running this show. For the past 9 weeks, the new Roseanne show has shined a powerful and necessary light on what it means to be working class in 2018. Her blended family on this new series was white and black and LGBTQ, and her generous neighbors next door were Muslims who forced her to confront her own bigotry.
If only her art could have helped her in her real life.
(Also, let me say this: There's no reason the show has to go just because she's gone. Over the years, TV has found ways to bring Bobby Ewing back from the dead on “Dallas”, forced us to accept the two Darrins on “Bewitched”, and found ways for hit shows to survive when their stars bolted after a year or two [David Caruso on "NYPD Blue", Pernell Roberts on "Bonanza"]. The smart people who were writing this Roseanne series can surely find a way to let the non-bigoted portion of the America's working class [which I can tell you is the VAST majority] have their voice heard on network television. Why should it be silenced by one lost soul?)

Bravo to Michael Moore for expounding on what I’ve been saying for a long time now: Roseanne Barr is mentally ill. This is in no way to minimize or excuse other traits about her: she is also a hateful racist. (Both things can be true.) But his firsthand knowledge is chilling and unsettling. And while there are hundreds of thousands of sick people who need compassion and support more than this enormously rich and famous (and awful) woman, there’s still a part of me that hates to see *anyone* this ill. Here’s hoping she gets the help she has so clearly needed for years. #PTBPD #celebritydetox

5 comments:

JimmyD said...

That's a great piece by Michael Moore. Love him or hate him (I tend to like him but he always pulls a stunt in each of his films that annoys me)... he knows his subject.
My question... and I had the same question when Michael Jackson died... where are the family members and close insiders, talking about how they knew of the problems, how they tried to help, how they feel. (With Jackson it was just blame blame blame... anyone but Michael.)
So far, Moore is the first... and it's been how many days?

Jeffery said...

She’s a bipolar. I think she’s has said that. She sure acts like one.

Ctellrich said...

I once, not to long ago bought a house that was, Presented as an estate sale... all the persons belongings etc ... had been left... car, tv, lawnmower... etc.. so finally at the closing... I found out that the owner had not died, and this was the story of executer and real estate agent. The owner had to be taken away to a DAV hospital, because he had some issued with the neighbors who he had lived next store to for years.. with no issue.. what they found out was he had a hereditary disease, that some how manipulates the mind, and can cause someone to be argumentative, and in fact racist. “ I thought it sounded so far fetched.. but they told me he had to turn the house over to them lock stock and barrel, because he could no longer live in the neighborhood... as They finally had to remove him from the premises, after things escalated over a few years of him yelling and screaming at his neighbors crazy rascist things. Beforehand he was a normal person got along great with them.
I don’t recall the condition... I’m not giving roseanne a pass at all for saything what she did,,, Iam just think there’re an issue here but the realtor said it was kinda like going crazy... I don’t know if Roseanne suffers from that type of illness,, but it does sound like it to me...

ATANNER said...

Thinks seems to be the only true explanation, mental illness...The person she was in the 1980s who rose to fame is the exact opposite of who she is now.

Doctor Doctor said...

Huntington's disease?

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