That New York Post cartoon

2009-02-18-cartoon
Wednesday the New York Post ran a cartoon that featured the chimpanzee apparently dead on the ground with two police officers standing over his lifeless body. One comments to the other, “They’ll have to find someone else to write the next stimulus bill”.

This cartoon caused somewhat of an uproar in some circles. Some people evidently believed that the dead chimp was supposed to be President Barack Obama.

Why they thought this I’m not exactly sure. I’ve never heard President Obama compared to a chimp, though I have heard President George W. Bush compared to a chimp.

When I saw the cartoon, I figured the artist was trying to take two topics from current events — the stimulus bill and the Connecticut chimp attack — and spin them into a single cartoon. Both topics were written about extensively in the New York City papers.

I think that if someone looks at this cartoon and sees some kind of racist undertone, their own prejudices are to blame, not the artist. And Presidents don’t even write bills. They sign them into law or they veto them. Members of the House and the Senate write bills.

Comments

  1. Cayusa says

    I thought pretty much the same way you did. I was actually a bit surprised when people started yelling racism about it. This cartoon being racist was the furthest thing from my mind when I saw it.

  2. jenn says

    I don’t think the Post cartoonist had racist intentions, but somebody there had to foresee that the chimp imagery had the potential to be taken as offensive.

    • says

      Was anyone really offended over this cartoon? I just don’t see it. This cartoon had nothing to do with either Obama, African-Americans, or race. If anyone could take offense to this cartoon it would be people from PETA or some other animal group.

      The problem — at least as I see it — is that when people decided to cry racism over something as silly as this, it tends to negate the impact when something that is truly racist rears it’s ugly head. When people decide to get all worked up over something like this, it’s hard to take them serious over anything else.

      • jenn says

        Agree with what you’re saying; Al Sharpton must have a Batphone set up in his house to be alerted of things like this cartoon. He was the most vocal critic of the cartoon, and he’s the first person I think of when you say “When people decide to get all worked up over something like this, it’s hard to take them serious over anything else.” What I was suggesting earlier almost sounds like an artist would have to compromise their idea so the overreacting element doesn’t possibly get offended–which is sad.

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