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Cartoon about speeding tickets, sex causes stir

The San Jose Mercury News ran a cartoon depicting actual excuses people have given police officers after being pulled over for speeding. The cartoons seemed harmless to me, but the mention of sex, breasts brought out the prudish readers and a lively discussion ensued in print. A round up of letters have been published with the cartoon in question.

Community Comments

#1 Ben Rankel
July/31/2009
@ 2:49 pm

What a joke that any one could find these offensive.

Some people really do go out of their way to be offended.

#2 Shane Davis
July/31/2009
@ 3:49 pm

OK, maybe it’s just where you come from in life, but this strip isn’t offensive…it isn’t even that funny.

Having been in law enforcement since 1990, I’ve heard a LOT of excuses ranging from blaming the car on

“sudden acceleration syndrome”

or

“my wife is home cheating and I need to catch her!”

or

“you &%^$$*% pig! Go catch a rapist or murderer!! I didn’t do anything wrong!!”

and the ever popular

“demons are possessing me/my car and I can’t stop myself/it! Can you call a priest?”

and even the lovable

“I don’t believe you’re really a cop. Anyone can get a uniform, badge, gun belt, gun, black & white car, red and blue lights and ticket book. Prove you’re a cop and I’ll give you my license”

and the wonderful

“I don’t recognize your earthly laws. I am not bound by the mere legal scratchings your government produces! I shall give you a ticket for interfering with freedom!”

Of course the last guy had a card board license plate that read “Republic of Texas – #004”. I guess he was one of the first in line when they apparently overthrew the state and began issuing their own legal documents.

My take on the strip is most cops would be happy for her, laugh and send her on her way. All we want is to get shot, run over or have to put up with an obnoxious posterior orifice. Thatâ??s all, really.

The cartoon might have been funnier if the lady had a alarmed look on HER face as the cop said â??Lady, youâ??re just getting a warning today because on my last stop I just had the best sex of MY life!â?

#3 Shane Davis
July/31/2009
@ 3:51 pm

CORRECTION!!! CORRECTION!!

“My take on the strip is most cops would be happy for her, laugh and send her on her way. All we want is to NOT get shot, run over or have to put up with an obnoxious posterior orifice. Thatâ??s all, really.”

Boy, of all the words to leave out, that NOT loomed really large there…

#4 Stacy Curtis
July/31/2009
@ 3:56 pm

I would be more offended by other things in the newspaper like murder, the California budget and anyone still mentioning Michael Jackson’s death.

#5 Dave Brousseau
July/31/2009
@ 4:22 pm

What I find most noteworthy about the whole thing is that the San Jose Mercury News has an illustrator on staff.

#6 Milt Priggee
July/31/2009
@ 5:18 pm

Cartoon?
Alan,- You may want to clarify that headline. When I saw cartoon headline, I thought t was about a cartoon.
I believe calling the illustration a cartoon is some what misleading, I mean even the Merc labeled it an illustration.
Just saying.

#7 Shane Davis
July/31/2009
@ 5:45 pm

“anyone still mentioning Michael Jacksonâ??s death.”

You insensitive self offender!

#8 Garey Mckee
July/31/2009
@ 10:08 pm

As one who draws a comic strip specifically about law enforcement, this is pretty tame stuff. I’ve done alot worse!

http://images.ucomics.com/comics/cspcc/2008/cspcc080706.jpg

#9 Paul Fell
August/1/2009
@ 8:17 am

This piece of work pretty much sums up what the news media has come to…

Now we have illustrations passing for editorial cartoons, informercials and entertainment promotions passing for hard news, and bigoted rants and looneytoon theories passing for editorial opinion.

One wonders when people will say “enough!”, but, as the legendary journalist and curmudgeon H.L. Mencken once stated, “no one ever went broke underestimating the taste of the American people”.

#10 Vince Vesci
August/1/2009
@ 2:11 pm

I don’t think there is a place for this in a family newspaper. Is this what we teach our youth today? This is why the youth of today think this sort of thing is okay.

#11 Henry Clausner
August/1/2009
@ 5:02 pm

whats next around here

#12 KRANKY (JOE RANK)
August/2/2009
@ 3:41 am

San Jose is such a wonderful city, but it is so underserved by such a piece of trash as the Mercury News.
Course, they are hardly alone.
The Kansas City Star was superlative until sold out. The LA Times was a beacon until the Trib decimated it.
Washpo went total corpo after Kathryn Graham and Ben Bradley were out of it.

Oh Heck, maybe Milt’s ultra-conspiratorial construct IS valid!

Greeting cards anyone?

#13 Ben Rankel
August/2/2009
@ 5:25 pm

@Vince Vesci It’s not my responsibility to parent your children. If you don’t want them looking at stuff like this (as mild as it is), then don’t let them read it. Do your job as a parent. The rest of the world shouldn’t have to bubble wrap the rough edges for your beliefs.

#14 Mike Peterson
August/2/2009
@ 7:08 pm

This is why I am a huge fan of web comics: You have total freedom to create what you want and test your theory that people will like it better than what they’ve been getting from the newspapers.

But, if you want to play Soup Nazi, and storm around screaming at the customers for not appreciating your creativity, you’d better have a long line of people and some really good soup.

If, on the other hand, you want that steady paycheck, well, then the owner of the restaurant will tell you what kind of food to cook, and, if you want to work there, that’s what you’ll cook. And if he gets a stream of complaints from the customers, well, guess who’s gonna lose the argument?

It just ain’t that complex, people.

#15 mike witmer
August/3/2009
@ 5:51 am

Another perfect example of why comics in print are under such a strangle hold. I get what Mike is saying…provide what the customer wants. But the level of censorship in newspapers compared to television or magazines is so unbalanced and off kilter it’s not a surprise that the media format is in the state it’s in.

#16 Henry Clausner
August/3/2009
@ 7:05 am

@ Mike and Mike…”exactly!”

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