Liberalest Cartoonist This Side o’ the Pecos


Texas is the second largest state in terms of area and population, yet there are no Texas newspapers with staff editorial cartoonists. That is not to say there aren’t cartoonists plying their trade in the Lone Star State. Between El Paso and San Antonio and nearly a hundred miles south of the Pecos River, in the small town of Marfa, Texas, is Gary Oliver.

Despite his often serious subject matter, “Golliver,” his pen name, often finds a way to elicit at least a wry smile.

“I try to use humor to get to the heart of something, usually something political,” he said.

Appearing weekly in the Big Bend Sentinel since 1983, and at times in other regional newspapers, Oliver has been a strong liberal voice and champion of the little guy in a fairly conservative part of the world.

Going back to the Ronald Reagan years of the 1980s Gary was never happy with the Republican Party.

Despite his partisan tilt, he said he’s really concerned about much bigger problems.

“We used to pride ourselves as being the beacon of democracy, but no one points to us now as how to run a democracy,” he said.

“We have one scandal after another: gerrymandering, the electoral college, voter suppression, and money in politics. We’re a textbook case on how to mess up a democracy,” he said.

Oh, and Gary has been legally blind since birth.

If you have been wanting to know something about the man (his AAEC biography is blank, but they do carry recent archives) here’s the lowdown.

The San Antonio Express-News and John MacCormack go way out west (over 300 miles) to profile a editorial cartoonist for the Express-News’ local section.

3 thoughts on “Liberalest Cartoonist This Side o’ the Pecos

  1. Legally blind? Isn’t that a serious problem? It’s kind of like a writer being legally brain-dead. I’ve long nurtured the idea of posing (jokingly) as a “blind cartoonist”, taking off on the concept of the many blind blues singers. A blind cartoonist would have lots of soul. But it looks like it ain’t funny, McGee . . . so what’s the story here? How is this possible?

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