Thursday, February 19, 2009

Dead Chimp

The Times (UK) Online reports picketing at the New York Post over a political cartoon depicting a chimpanzee shot by the police, with the caption "Now they'll have to get someone else to write the next stimulus bill."

For future generations who will have forgotten the details: the chimp alludes to a recent very nasty attack by a "domestic" chimp (!?) on a friend of its "owner"; the chimp was killed by police.

I hesitate even to call any more attention to the incredibly invidious subject of the Post scandal, but there is something obvious about the cartoon in question that I haven't heard anyone say: leaving the racial issue entirely out of account for a nanosecond, the cartoon not even isn't remotely funny, it makes absolutely no sense. Let us assume that Bush were still president, and had just signed off on a stimulus bill: would this cartoon even exist? What connection would there be between the chimp story and the stimulus bill? Would someone have imagined it worked THEN? This becomes the litmus test, for me, as to whether this thing is purposely racist or not: it MUST be, logically. Otherwise it would not exist. Let the Post and the cartoonist deny it until they're blue in the face, the fact remains: this is a blatantly racist cartoon. That's its whole reason for being.

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