Newspaper Drops Sunday Comics Section

Citing costs a newspaper has dropped its Sunday Funnies section.

Blaming rising costs due to tariffs on Canadian newsprint The Robesonian of Lumberton, North Carolina, beginning this weekend, is no longer carrying a Sunday Comics section. The paper will continue to publish daily comic strips. In a news item the newspaper told readers, who may have thought the insert had just forgotten to be included in their paper, that the section was gone from all copies:

The Robesonian, beginning with today’s edition, will no longer publish the Sunday color comics package. The decision was forced on the newspaper by a recent surge in the cost of newsprint, which industry experts say is climbing and quickly because of tariffs imposed on imports from Canada.

“This was a difficult decision,” said Denise Ward, the publisher of The Robesonian. “We know and appreciate that some folks love their comics, but the cost is something we simply cannot absorb.”

Ward said that the newspaper will be adding some puzzles and games.

The daily comics, which are published in black and white, are unaffected and will continue to be published.

The newspaper explained the decision in more detail in an editorial headlined “Trump’s Newsprint Tariffs Force Not-So_Funny Decision”

One of the targets in Trump’s Tariffs War has been newsprint from Canada, the cost of which has risen about 30 percent since the beginning of this year. The tariffs are protecting a single Washington plant that apparently can’t otherwise effectively compete, but is being shielded by the president from the free market — a decidedly unRepublican approach and contrary to the capitalistic fundamentals that have given us the world’s No. 1 economy and nourishes it.

But for Sunday comics to return, something has to break to our benefit — additional readers and advertisers, or a change of heart at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. Of those two, we know which is more likely.

Wikipedia says The Robesonian has a circulation of 14,000. Unknown what comics were carried in their Sunday edition or if it was printed inhouse or a preprinted section from an outside source.



The Portland (Oregon) Tribune is a free twice weekly newspaper and part of the Pamplin Media Group, which serves Oregon with mostly weekly papers. Early this year the Portland Tribune, also citing increased costs of Canadian newsprint, dropped their daily comics to reduce the size of the newspaper.

For more than four years, the Tribune has published a handful of comic strips and cartoons provided by Creators Syndicate. Those include “Scary Gary,” “Ballard Street,” “Dog Eat Doug,” “Nest Heads,” “Dogs of C-Kennel” and “Free Range.” Pamplin Media Group President and Publisher J. Mark Garber says shifting budget priorities and newsprint costs forced the Tribune to reduce the size of its papers, which meant dropping the comics page.



Back to Sunday comics sections…

Last month the The (Columbian) Missourian took a different tack. They folded the Sunday comics insert into the regular newspaper. The Sunday Funnies remain in color, but not in their own separate section.




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