Makers of Ambien Slyly Fire Back After Roseanne Barr Blamed Racist Tweet on Drug
ABC has canceled the Roseanne reboot after one season after its star, Roseanne Barr, posted a racist tweet about former Barack Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett — remarks that Barr attributed to “Ambien tweeting.” On Wednesday, one day after the ABC announcement, the makers of the sleep aid Ambien responded to Barr’s blame-shifting excuse. And it was glorious.
The company, Sanofi US, took to Twitter to wryly clarify to the world that “racism is not a known side effect of any Sanofi medication.”
“People of all races, religions and nationalities work at Sanofi every day to improve the lives of people around the world,” Sanofi US said on Twitter. “While all pharmaceutical treatments have side effects, racism is not a known side effect of any Sanofi medication.”
Sanofi’s statement follows a flurry of condemning remarks from people associated with Roseanne, including ABC president Channing Dungey.
“Roseanne’s Twitter statement is abhorrent, repugnant, and inconsistent with our values, and we have decided to cancel her show,” Dungey said in a statement.
Disney chairman and CEO Bob Iger added on Twitter, “There was only one thing to do here, and that was the right thing.”
Prior to ABC’s cancellation announcement, consulting producer Wanda Sykes tweeted Tuesday that she would not be returning to the show. Sara Gilbert, who plays the Roseanne character’s daughter, called Barr’s remarks “abhorrent” and said that they “do not reflect the beliefs of our cast and crew or anyone associated with our show.”
The tweet in question, which has since been deleted, read: “muslim brotherhood & planet of the apes had a baby=vj.” The “VJ” refers to Valerie Jarrett, who is Black. Barr has since apologized, tweeting, “I apologize to Valerie Jarrett and to all Americans. I am truly sorry for making a bad joke about her politics and her looks. I should have known better. Forgive me-my joke was in bad taste.”
(Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty)