Today is a holiday, though it’s another of those American wage-slave holidays where the banks, the schools and the post offices close and everything else goes on as normal. Most of the cartoons acknowledging MLK Day seem pretty bland, but Marc Murphy breaks ranks by making a point, adding on his Facebook page:
People think this is a holiday for African-Americans, which is the clearest proof that they don’t understand King’s life’s work or why we even have a holiday. If it’s not a holiday for all Americans, that’s a sign that his work is not yet complete.
But that’s where Murphy’s question comes in: What have you done?
And then there’s this: Football fans are complaining that the Bills/Steelers game was rescheduled for today at 4:30 and they won’t be able to watch because they’ll be at work.
Hey, don’t complain to the NFL. Complain to your employer.
King was murdered while in Memphis to support a labor union. More unfinished work.
Another piece of pointed commentary, this from Mike Peters (AMS) who is rarely so harsh, but here voices the fears of many decent Americans about Trump’s incendiary outbursts.
For those who missed history class and didn’t see Burton and O’Toole in Becket, the reference is to Henry II, who complained in those words about the Archbishop of Canterbury, whereupon some loyal knights went to the cathedral and murdered him.
Henry was very sorry and said he didn’t mean it, but Trump isn’t softening his rhetoric despite growing evidence that he is inciting lunatics and that people will die because he won’t stop. And if you consider the hateful divisions he has sown thus far, there are already assaults and killings that could be attributed to him.
Still, Trump continues to maintain a strong lead for the GOP nomination. Today will be the Iowa Caucuses, though Jeff Danziger (Counterpoint) focuses instead on the New Hampshire Primary, which will be next week a few miles from Danziger’s Vermont base.
Trump has urged his supporters in Iowa to brave the cold, show up and vote and then they can go home, which illustrates that he has no idea how caucuses work, because you have to all gather and stick around and it can take a while.
But Danziger has the Primary nailed, because little New Hampshire becomes a media focus and we get to meet all the candidates, often more than once. I like the scowl on the woman behind the counter, who wishes the media would bugger off and let her serve paying customers.
Part of the circus this year is that the Democratic Party didn’t want New Hampshire to have the first primary, so they’re more or less boycotting it and Biden won’t appear on the ballot. That’ll teach us.
But if Marianne Williams wins, please don’t take it seriously.
Looking forward, Matt Wuerker (Politico) suggests that the war in Israel poses a serious threat to Biden’s re-election, and I don’t think he’s particularly off-base. It’s not so much that US arming of Israel is causing a great revulsion in the US as it is that it’s shaving points off Biden’s moderate support and distracting voters from issues like abortion, racism and other factors that should get them off the fence.
Those who pay attention know that, while the US continues its arms deals with Israel, it is exerting diplomatic pressure to halt the indiscriminate bombing of Gaza, where people are so packed in that it is hopeless to try to hit asymmetric military targets among innocent civilians. But, as Rod Emmerson suggests, Netanyahu is turning a deaf ear to those entreaties.
Patrick Chappatte goes further, citing the case South Africa has brought before the international court in Brussells, where the counterargument to 20,000 civilian deaths is that it isn’t genocide unless someone says that’s what they’re trying to do.
Otherwise, it’s just collateral damage, which isn’t mentioned in the Geneva Convention.
In any case, as Clay Jones points out, the days when our political differences ended at the water are long gone, and Republicans are happy to attack the president whatever his foreign policy decisions, not only regardless of the reasoning behind those decisions but regardless of whether he is doing what they just demanded he do a week ago.
Consistency has no place in campaign rhetoric, and certainly not when you’re counting on the support of blind followers instead of deep thinkers.
Steve Breen (Creators) expresses the fear that striking back against Houthi missile attacks will create a wider war in the Mideast, though it raises the question “Wider than what?”
Ella Baron depicts the anti-Houthi actions of the US and UK, and her labeling of weaponry as “anti-violence” is as contrary a metaphor as is the World worrying that violence may spread when her back is already riddled with evidence of the rash.
It makes the reassurances of Sunak and Biden seem more calming than realistic.
Juxtaposition of the Day
Certainly, Biden and Sunak aren’t the only world leaders guilty of supporting violence, and both Kallaugher and Morland accuse Iran of trying to play the innocent in all this.
Kallaugher uses the familiar imagery of the puppet, together with drones that suggest the technical help Iran is furnishing to a variety of militant groups, while Morland ties the matter into a current issue in the UK where Britain is banning XL Bullies, an oversized, reportedly ungovernable crossbreed of pitbulls.
Morland allows Iran, with Putin looking over its shoulder, to play the role of the owner who insists that they’re really quite gentle.
Juxtaposition of the Day #2
Speaking of Putin, and circling back to the discussion of our upcoming presidential elections, Horsey points out the needed weaponry the Russians are getting for their invasion of Ukraine, including drones from Iran, missiles from North Korea and the support and friendship of MAGA Republicans.
And as if to assure us that this is not a false accusation, Lester insists that providing aid to Ukraine is like flushing money down the toilet.
Juxtaposition of Old Cartoons
We won’t be helpless until November 4, 2024, and maybe not then. It’s not over.