Ambien maker: Racism not a known side effect of our drugs


(WATE/AP) — A pharmaceutical company took aim at Roseanne Barr after the star of ABC’s now-canceled television show “Roseanne” blamed a racist tweet on the sleep medication Ambien. 

After Barr tweeted that Valerie Jarrett, a former advisor to President Obama, was a cross between the Muslim Brotherhood and “Planet of the Apes,” the actress wrote that it was “2 in the morning and I was ambien tweeting-it was memorial day too-i went 2 far & and do not want it defended-it was egregious indefensible. I made a mistake I wish I hadn’t…don’t defend it please.”

ABC announced Tuesday that the show was canceled.

Sanofi, a French pharmaceutical company and the maker of the Ambien, responded to Barr’s statement, saying:

“People of all races, religions and nationalities work at Sanofi every day to improve the lives of people around the world. While all pharmaceutical treatments have side effects, racism is not a known side effect of any Sanofi medication.”

Trump, who reveled in the success of “Roseanne” after Barr’s character in the show came out as a supporter of his presidency, made no mention of the firing in a campaign-style rally in Tennessee on Tuesday evening.

“We have a lot bigger things going on in the country right now, certainly, that the president is spending his time on,” said White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders.

Jarrett, a black woman who said she was “fine” after the slur, urged in an MSNBC special Tuesday about racism that the incident become a teaching moment. She said that Robert Iger, chief executive of ABC parent Walt Disney Co., called to apologize and told her before it became public that the show was being canceled.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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