Hawaii-resident Roseanne Barr has always been a political person. She wrote much of her beliefs on American social issues into her award-winning television show based out of fictional Lanford, a lower-middle-class, blue collar town in downstate Illinois, not too far from Chicago.
Roseanne’s brand of progressiveness/liberalism, as showcased on the television show, featured labor rights, union-company relations, consumer issues, corporate greed, political corruption, and the concerns that create an environment of political apathy. She also touched on women’s rights, and was a pioneer in television, touching on lesbian and gay issues at a time when censors and networks were afraid of what it would do to their ratings and commercial advertising sales.
Fed-up with two-party domination in American politics, and a “more of the same” attitude towards both the Democratic and Republican parties, Roseanne Barr is putting herself out as a serious candidate for President of the United States.
GETTING PAST THE COMEDY
While many find difficulty getting past her comedy roles, and personality style portrayed in her failed talk show and current reality-television series, Roseanne wants to remind people she’s always been, at the heart of her work, expressing the frustrations people have about everyday life in America.
Roseanne argues that her nomination should not be taken as a joke and that her campaign is driven on a belief that Democrats and Republicans are not working in the best interests of the American people. Speaking of the two parties during her announcement on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, “They both suck and they both are a bunch of criminals.”
Roseanne wrote many of her political beliefs into her award-winning sitcom.
GREEN PARTY WELCOMES ROSEANNE
Green Party leadership officially welcomed Roseanne’s candidacy for the nomination, along with the candidacy of Dr. Jill Stein. "Anyone hopeful about the Occupy Wall Street’s challenge to the status quo or disappointed by the Obama Administration’s broken promises of change now has a pair of candidates to watch. Anyone bored or irritated with the Mitt Versus Newt Show by now will be relieved by the breath of fresh air — maybe a Green gale force of righteousness — that’s about to come," said Tamar Yager, a national co-chair of the Green Party.
Roseanne understands that running on a third-party ticket is an uphill battle. On her Tonight Show appearance and comments afterward, Roseanne said that she wants to get into the debates and bring up real issues the others won’t talk about, “I want to represent the taxpayers.”
Read Roseanne’s submission to the Green Party: Green Party Candidate Qustionnaire.
Roseanne cited five main issues driving her candidacy: obliteration of the two-party system, corporations are not people, economic justice, healthcare not warfare, legalization of marijuana.
She also cites affinity with the Green Party, “The Green Party platform is a straightforward, commonsense approach to the central issues facing America today and this is why I look forward to knocking on doors, lighting up Twitter and taking to the airwaves to promote our values and message. As a mother and grandmother, and as someone who has spent a career in a male dominated and chauvinistic industry, the Green Party’s views on feminism strongly appeal to me.”
DEMOCRATS OPPOSE GREEN PARTY
As the Green Party started growing at the grassroots, in neighborhoods and municipal government, Democrats started ramping up opposition to the party’s existence. The opposition became most heated when the Green Party nominated Ralph Nader in 2000 to run against Democrat Vice President Al Gore and Republican Texas Governor George W. Bush. Many die-hard Democrats blamed, and continue to blame, Green Party members and followers for robbing Gore of votes that would have propelled him to the presidency.
TEN KEY VALUES
The Green Party is built on what it calls Ten Key Values, ratified in Denver, Colorado in 2000:
1. GRASSROOTS DEMOCRACY: Every human being deserves a say in the decisions that affect their lives and not be subject to the will of another. Therefore, we will work to increase public participation at every level of government and to ensure that our public representatives are fully accountable to the people who elect them. We will also work to create new types of political organizations which expand the process of participatory democracy by directly including citizens in the decision-making process.
2. SOCIAL JUSTICE AND EQUAL OPPORTUNITY: All persons should have the rights and opportunity to benefit equally from the resources afforded us by society and the environment. We must consciously confront in ourselves, our organizations, and society at large, barriers such as racism and class oppression, sexism and homophobia, ageism and disability, which act to deny fair treatment and equal justice under the law.
3. ECOLOGICAL WISDOM: Human societies must operate with the understanding that we are part of nature, not separate from nature. We must maintain an ecological balance and live within the ecological and resource limits of our communities and our planet. We support a sustainable society which utilizes resources in such a way that future generations will benefit and not suffer from the practices of our generation. To this end we must practice agriculture which replenishes the soil; move to an energy efficient economy; and live in ways that respect the integrity of natural systems.
4. NON-VIOLENCE: It is essential that we develop effective alternatives to society’s current patterns of violence. We will work to demilitarize, and eliminate weapons of mass destruction, without being naive about the intentions of other governments. We recognize the need for self-defense and the defense of others who are in helpless situations. We promote non-violent methods to oppose practices and policies with which we disagree, and will guide our actions toward lasting personal, community and global peace.
5. DECENTRALIZATION: Centralization of wealth and power contributes to social and economic injustice, environmental destruction, and militarization. Therefore, we support a restructuring of social, political and economic institutions away from a system which is controlled by and mostly benefits the powerful few, to a democratic, less bureaucratic system. Decision-making should, as much as possible, remain at the individual and local level, while assuring that civil rights are protected for all citizens.
6. COMMUNITY-BASED ECONOMICS AND ECONOMIC JUSTICE: We recognize it is essential to create a vibrant and sustainable economic system, one that can create jobs and provide a decent standard of living for all people while maintaining a healthy ecological balance. A successful economic system will offer meaningful work with dignity, while paying a “living wage” which reflects the real value of a person’s work.
Local communities must look to economic development that assures protection of the environment and workers’ rights; broad citizen participation in planning; and enhancement of our “quality of life.” We support independently owned and operated companies which are socially responsible, as well as co-operatives and public enterprises that distribute resources and control to more people through democratic participation.
7. FEMINISM AND GENDER EQUITY: We have inherited a social system based on male domination of politics and economics. We call for the replacement of the cultural ethics of domination and control with more cooperative ways of interacting that respect differences of opinion and gender. Human values such as equity between the sexes, interpersonal responsibility, and honesty must be developed with moral conscience. We should remember that the process that determines our decisions and actions is just as important as achieving the outcome we want.
8. RESPECT FOR DIVERSITY: We believe it is important to value cultural, ethnic, racial, sexual, religious and spiritual diversity, and to promote the development of respectful relationships across these lines.
We believe that the many diverse elements of society should be reflected in our organizations and decision-making bodies, and we support the leadership of people who have been traditionally closed out of leadership roles. We acknowledge and encourage respect for other life forms than our own and the preservation of biodiversity.
9. PERSONAL AND GLOBAL RESPONSIBILITY: We encourage individuals to act to improve their personal well-being and, at the same time, to enhance ecological balance and social harmony. We seek to join with people and organizations around the world to foster peace, economic justice, and the health of the planet.
10. FUTURE FOCUS AND SUSTAINABILITY: Our actions and policies should be motivated by long-term goals. We seek to protect valuable natural resources, safely disposing of or “unmaking” all waste we create, while developing a sustainable economics that does not depend on continual expansion for survival. We must counterbalance the drive for short-term profits by assuring that economic development, new technologies, and fiscal policies are responsible to future generations who will inherit the results of our actions.
The Green Party of the United States was formed in 2001 as an outgrowth of the Association of State Green Parties, which was formed in 1996.