Political Cartoons in an Age of Fake News
Dec 1, 2022 – 5:30 pm
The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign hosts “a roundtable discussion by political cartoonists Eric J. Garcia, Keith Knight, and Ann Telnaes, moderated by Associate Professor in Graphic Design Stacey Robinson.”
Letters to the Editor About Editorial Cartoon
Opinion page Editor of The Buffalo News took some heat over a Gary Varvel political cartoon.
I’m not certain why you chose to condone violence against women in the 11/21 political cartoon by Gary Varvel. Was it something we said? Do we still have too many rights for your liking? Varvel’s pathetic attempt at humor was especially ill-conceived, as the speaker’s husband was recently attacked with a hammer. This comes across as death threat to Ms. Pelosi – and you chose to print it. What is wrong with you? …
I am appalled at the the tasteless political cartoon by Gary Varvel of Creators Syndicate in the Nov. 21 edition of The Buffalo News. A mere few weeks after Paul Pelosi was viciously attacked with a hammer, The Buffalo News chooses to portray the Republican victory for control of the House of Representatives with a cartoon showing the present Speaker of the House, Mrs. Pelosi being crushed by a gavel which is very similar to a hammer. Contextualize this with Kevin McCarthy’s comment in August of 2021 where he joked about hitting her with the gavel when she hands it over…
Let me explain…
Civic Studies Comic Books.
Biting off some of the most user-unfriendly of topics, the cartoonists at CCS have released titles that include How We Read, This is What Democracy Looks Like, and Let’s Talk About It: A Graphic Guide to Mental Health, all seeking to make otherwise intractable issues relatable with the aid of everything from Richard Scarry characters to board-game-like flow charts.
Cartoonist Dan Nott drew the latest comic book, called Freedom and Unity, which is now being handed out to school groups that visit the Vermont Statehouse.
“I had been a clueless white middle-class kid.”
Bechdel came out as a lesbian in college in the 1980s. She described the experience as both a coming of age and an entrance into political consciousness.
“I had been a clueless white middle-class kid,” she said, “but all of a sudden, once I realized I was a lesbian, I found myself on the outside.”
Bechdel’s belief that the personal and political are inextricably linked has only been reinforced by the multiple attempts to ban the book across the country. A school board meeting in Kansas City, Missouri most recently made such an attempt.
Another Cartoon, Another Objection
There’s a conservative streak in the Mountain Xpress’ comic strips. Even so, I was shocked by the explicit xenophobia in Brent Brown’s “The New Exotic” …
The last frame shows a newcomer, depicted as a mosquito, carrying a suitcase labeled “West Nile virus” and a bag labeled “vector-borne diseases.”
How did it become acceptable for a cartoonist at Asheville’s long-standing alternative weekly to stereotype “climate refugees” in this way?
Of course, there’s a history in this country of depicting outsiders as contagious pests…
Cartoonist Brent Brown responded to the letter:
… The bugs in the comic weren’t meant to represent human climate change refugees as disease-carrying pests in a metaphorical way; their discussion of the new residents/baggage was about the literal nonnative mosquitoes and concerns of ‘local transmission of an exotic ailment’ such as viruses found in warmer climates, as reported in a local news story …
Everything Old is New Again
As World War II was slowly moving toward a reality, Seuss began penning cartoons for PM, a liberal publication, frequently pushing back against the “America First” mentality of U.S. isolationists opposed to U.S. involvement in the war.
Parker Molloy and Upworthy present 9 political cartoons by Dr. Seuss that are still relevant today.
(This story originally appeared on 03.02.17)