Sanofi throws shade at American actress Roseanne Barr over racist tweet

Sanofi, manufacturer of sedative Ambien, has fired back at American actress Roseanne Barr, who blamed her racist tweets on the drug. The company said in a tweet, which had over 181k likes, 67k retweets and 5.9k replies, that individuals of all races, religions and nationalities work at Sanofi to improve the lives of consumers worldwide.

"While all pharmaceutical treatments have side effects, racism is not a known side effect of any Sanofi medication," it said.

This comes after Barr tweeted that Valerie Jarrett, senior advisor to former US President Barack Obama, was the "child of the Muslim Brotherhood, an Islamist group and the Planet of the Apes film", according to multiple media reports.

Barr later apologised for her actions and wrote in two separate tweets that she is not a racist, never was and will never be. She then said that she was "Ambien-tweeting", admitting that she "went too far" and did not want netizens defending her statements, multiple media reports such as Reuters and BBC stated. All respective tweets have since been deleted.

In response, ABC Entertainment president Channing Dungey called her statement "abhorrent, repugnant and inconsistent" with the company's values. As such, it has decided to cancel her show Roseanne, several media reports stated. Chairman and CEO of The Walt Disney Company, which owns ABC, quoted Dungey's statement on Twitter, adding that there was only one thing for ABC to do and it did the right thing.

Marketing has reached out to Sanofi for additional comments.

Barr is not the only one who has gotten into hot soup for her racist comments. Over the past year, some brands have also copped flak for missing the mark and being racist. In March this year, Heineken USA removed all spots related to its campaign themed “Sometimes, lighter is better” from its social media channels after being called out by American rapper Chance the Rapper for being racist. The ad was meant to promote its Heineken Light beer.

Earlier this year, Amazon UK has pulled two Chinese traditional outfit costumes from its site, after the pictures featuring white children posing with slant eyed gestures drew criticism from consumers. Amazon neither explained why those products were on sale, nor did it apologise. Last year, Dove also came under fire for a racist body wash ad, which featured a black woman removing her shirt to miraculously become a white woman, who then removes her shirt and turns into an Asian woman.

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