The chimp and the news cycle.

In African American interest, Caribbean American interest, Caribbean interest, Caribbean news, Dominican Republic, Grenada, Haiti, Jamaica, Politics, President Barack Obama, Trinidad on February 19, 2009 at 6:12 pm

A couple of thoughts bout the dead ape: 

The New York Post cartoon by Sean Delonas was very racist! EXTREMELY. Why? Cuz historically black people have been called monkeys, apes, coons, spades, etcetera. Therefore drawing a cartoon based on Monday’s Connecticut chimp shooting that shows slain chimp and two hovering white police officers saying, “They’ll have to find someone else to write the next stimulus bill,” brings to mind President Barack Obama who is black and author of said stimulus bill and that makes it racial.

The chimp, in case you haven’t heard, once starred in an Old Navy commercial with actress Morgan Fairchild. Known as Travis, the chimp mauled a woman on Monday, ripped her face off before police shot it to death.

The cartoon sadly gives this story, though riveting in a wholly craps, a-chimp-mauls suburbanite-woman-kind-of-way, more traction. 

I wonder what’s up with New York Post editors? Freedom of speech aside, it’s their job to control (and yes, they typically do control) news stories and editorial cartoons presented in the paper before it goes to print. The cartoon was racist, insensitive, sad, unfunny, and a complete disregard for Post readership, many of whom are minorities (and in NYC the term minority is an oxymoron). 

So what happens when a racist cartoon hits newsstands? There’s an uproar and protest ensues. Then the paper rebuts with a flimsy excuse: 

Col Allan, editor-in-chief of the Post, defended the work. “The cartoon is a clear parody of a current news event, to wit the shooting of a violent chimpanzee in Connecticut,” Allan said in a statement. “It broadly mocks Washington’s efforts to revive the economy…”

Then Washington, DC, reporters are told  to get a quote from the White House.

They do:

Robert Gibbs, White House press secretary, declined comment. “I have not seen the cartoon,” he told reporters aboard Air Force One as Mr Obama returned to Washington. “But I don’t think it’s altogether newsworthy reading the New York Post.”

Then Eric Holder, the country’s first black general attorney, says we remain “essentially a nation of cowards.” 

Then New York Daily News columnist Michael Daly sides with the Rev. Al Sharpton because he can’t find the humor in the cartoon either and surmises it’s racist. 

Then things really get weird when the turn of events are discussed on ABC’s “The View”.  Jezebel reports that Sherri Shepherd twice had to correct the award-winning veteran reporter Barbara Walters who was confused about the monkey’s color in the cartoon. 

Then I say let’s put this thing to rest: Stop reading that rag. – MJ


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