There has been plenty of backlash from the audience of The View following Raven-Symoné’s recent controversial comments. According to USA Today, approximately 120,000 have signed a petition addressed to Barbara Walters, the producer of the show, calling for Symoné’s removal from the panel.
This campaign launched soon after Symoné responded to a cell phone video of a police officer. The video shows a violent exchange between a police officer and a student where the student is dragged from her desk after refusing to put away her cell phone.
Symoné asserts, “I think it’s important that we all understand what happened and we don’t know everything. First, she was asked by multiple teachers to put her phone away or to leave the room. We don’t know if she popped off at the mouth. We don’t know what she said, but she did not get up. They called him as a last resort. He talked to her for 30 seconds and she still didn’t get up. She still didn’t put the phone away. You do not need to be manhandling a child that way but at the same time, kids, put your phones away.”
In addition, Symoné is being criticized for her recent assertion that she would not be in favor of hiring an employee with a “ghetto” name, as well as for her spat over religious liberty with Candace Cameron Bure.
The petition reads, “African Americans and black people around the diaspora need a voice representative of their views and not a voice representative of what white people want us to say. We need strong black role models in prominent positions on television and Raven-Symoné cannot provide that. That is why I ask that we petition to remove her from The View.”
In spite of the call for Symoné’s removal, ABC has no intention of firing her. “We love Raven,” an ABC network spokesperson released in a statement to E! News. “She is confident, genuine and opinionated, all qualities that make her a great addition to the panel.”