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Students upset at Keith Knight K-Chronicle toon

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Several Slippery Rock University students protested the running of A K Chronicles cartoon that depicted an African-Ameican with a noose around his neck saying, “You’re doing this because I’m black, aren’t you?” while white characters accused him of playing the race card.

The cartoon even led some students to show up to the Union with nooses around their own necks. Terrell Foster, an SRU student from Harrisburg says, “They put this in the paper thinking it would be funny. How funny is it when it’s real? When you see someone walking around with a noose on their neck, it’s not as funny no more.”

The editor and academic advisor of “The Rocket” have no comment on the situation, telling us only that the cartoon is a nationally syndicated comic, something they’ve put in their pages for the past three years.

A peaceful march and protest is being planned by the campus NAACP chapter and Black Action Society.

Community Comments

#1 Wiley Miller
September/29/2009
@ 9:11 am

I have found over my decades in the profession, that the most humorless people on the planet are college students. Their inability to comprehend the nuance of satire is truly stunning… and sad.

#2 Ben Carlsen
September/29/2009
@ 10:25 am

Apparently they also don’t realize Mr. Knight himself is black… It really shouldn’t make a difference, though.

Sometimes people just see something they find offensive and react without thinking about the context.

#3 I.D. Bergren
September/29/2009
@ 10:25 am

People will always get upset when you challenge their mind.

#4 Wiley Miller
September/29/2009
@ 10:34 am

That’s what’s so sad… this wasn’t much of a challenge.

#5 RobSmithJr
September/29/2009
@ 10:34 am

I agree, Wiley. I think it’s just they are young, relatively uneducated in the ways of the world and act mostly on emotion. So I get why they are upset. I get worried when I realize these same kids are driving, drinking and using cell phones!… OK, I’m kidding… sort of…
Keith’s panel is funny and really well drawn and it’s too bad the kiddies don’t recognize that.

#6 Howard Tayler
September/29/2009
@ 10:43 am

After hearing Keith speak and seeing a number of his comics on display during the lecture in Vegas this weekend I’m happy to have him say whatever he wants however he wants to say it regarding race (or anything else for that matter.)

HE GETS IT.

These kids at SRU? They don’t.

#7 I.D. Bergren
September/29/2009
@ 10:58 am

yeah, Wiley, I hear you.

it frustrates me greatly because i have to go to school with those kinds of people. they just don’t understand satire and sarcasm, yet they think they have all the correct opinions on such things as race and politics.

#8 Kelly Ferguson
September/29/2009
@ 10:59 am

What is it with Keith Knight cartoons & college kids? Wasn’t there a similar kerfuffle at the U of A last year?

#9 Kayl Miller
September/29/2009
@ 11:11 am

There are many more dumb college grads than there used to be.

#10 Robert Gidley
September/29/2009
@ 11:12 am

@Kelly: Yup, Keef managed to bruise the tender sensibilities of Arizona college students last November.

Details and the terribly offensive cartoon here:
http://blogs.phoenixnewtimes.com/valleyfever/2008/11/post_5.php

You can see the current racially insensitive tremendously offensive comic at Keef’s blog:
http://www.kchronicles.com/uploaded_images/obamaraceweb-754697.jpg

Warning: NSFU

#11 Dan Reynolds
September/29/2009
@ 11:16 am

Anyone who does a cartoon like that is a TOTAL moron.

#12 Wiley Miller
September/29/2009
@ 11:18 am

What I found as egregious, if not more so, was the weak, non-response by the editor/faculty advisor. This was, as they say, a teaching moment. Instead, they took the cowardly way out of ducking the issue.

#13 Steve Skelton
September/29/2009
@ 11:32 am

Looks like they need to add courses in U.S. History, The Art of Sarcasm, and How to Grow Skin Thicker than a Water Balloon. Great toon, Keith!!

#14 John Cole
September/29/2009
@ 12:08 pm

Harvard, it ain’t.

#15 Howard Tayler
September/29/2009
@ 12:09 pm

When Keith lectures he is all about the teaching moments. The university should pay to bring Keith in to have some of those moments with the student body.

#16 Milt Priggee
September/29/2009
@ 1:25 pm

I agree with Wiley….a teaching moment….and the advisor ducks the teaching moment.

He should be fired…..or taught how to teach.

It would’ve been nice to have seen the entire cartoon instead of just taking a fraction of it out of context.

#17 Terry LaBan
September/29/2009
@ 1:38 pm

Too bad–it’s a great cartoon and if the students were blessed with even below-average senses of humor, they’d realize that they actually agree with the sentiments. But (almost)no publicity is bad and maybe Keith can wrangle a paid speaking engagement out of it. Slippery Rock–didn’t they always used to make fun of its football team?

#18 Terry LaBan
September/29/2009
@ 1:38 pm

Too bad–it’s a great cartoon and if the students were blessed with even below-average senses of humor, they’d realize that they actually agree with the sentiments. But (almost)no publicity is bad and maybe Keith can wrangle a paid speaking engagement out of it. Slippery Rock–didn’t they always used to make fun of its football team?

#19 Terry LaBan
September/29/2009
@ 1:39 pm

Too bad–it’s a great cartoon and if the students were blessed with even below-average senses of humor, they’d realize that they actually agree with the sentiments. But (almost)no publicity is bad and maybe Keith can wrangle a paid speaking engagement out of it. Slippery Rock–didn’t they always used to make fun of its football team?

#20 Richard Cross
September/29/2009
@ 1:42 pm

Sometimes you have to show absurdity by being absurd. We are not so far removed from those days to think that some people don’t still think that way. Methinks some doth protest too much! These students who act offended should not “kill the messenger” who caused them to think. They should take the cartoon for what it is…a wake up call that reminds us that we should remember the past and make sure it stays in the past. Keith is not racist and he doesn’t hate White people, so those who act offended are just looking for something that isn’t there. Political correctness is running amok in this country. Let’s cry “Wolf” when there’s an actual reason to, or else you belittle the real instances of racism to the point where no one will recognize when it actuallhy happens.

#21 Garey Mckee
September/29/2009
@ 7:58 pm

I’m sure Keith had to expect some push back on this one. But what’s the point in cartooning if it doesn’t garner a reaction and make people think. Wether that reaction is laughter, shock, suprise or even outrage; as long as you are getting a reaction then it’s well worth it. That being said, the REAL trouble starts when people confuse this ability and desire to provoke a reaction with sensationalism. Keith’s work has always been clever and thought provoking, this cartoon is no different.

#22 Russell Hodin
September/29/2009
@ 11:41 pm

It’s a hilarious cartoon and damn near perfect. Knight touches genius with this one.

Class over. Go play with your iPhones.

#23 Russell Hodin
September/29/2009
@ 11:42 pm

It’s a hilarious cartoon and dang near perfect. Knight touches genius with this one.

Class over. Go play with your iPhones.

#24 Russell Hodin
September/29/2009
@ 11:42 pm

It’s a hilarious cartoon and d@rn near perfect. Knight touches genius with this one.

Class over. Go play with your iPhones.

#25 Russell Hodin
September/29/2009
@ 11:43 pm

It’s a hilarious cartoon and drn near perfect. Knight touches genius with this one.

Class over. Go play with your iPhones.

#26 Russell Hodin
September/29/2009
@ 11:43 pm

It’s a hilarious cartoon and d_mn near perfect. Knight touches genius with this one.

Class over. Go play with your iPhones.

#27 Russell Hodin
September/29/2009
@ 11:45 pm

sorry about the stuttering. I blame my propensity for drawing on the desk during class instead of listening to the lecture.

#28 John Auchter
September/30/2009
@ 6:38 am

I was going to preface this comment with a “I hardly ever watch network television…” but, whatever, here goes:

I was watching a new sitcom on NBC called “Community.” It’s about a dumpy little community college with a particularly quirky group of students. During a discussion one student mentions certain atrocities that have taken place in Guatemala, which fascinates a couple of the other students. The original student attempts to provide some details and nuances about the situation, and the other students sort of wave her off — they don’t want more information, they just “want to protest the hell out of something.” And they do. Hilarity ensues. But even on TV, they are not so outrageously misguided that they wear nooses around their necks….

#29 Jim Siergey
September/30/2009
@ 12:41 pm

Any cartoons dealing with race or religion, no matter what they are saying, will get this type of reaction. Zealotry and thick-headedness know no bounds,

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