Wednesday, July 16, 2008
Let me begin by saying that I will vote for Obama. It’s pretty simple really. But most of you probably knew that. However, as much as I support him for president, I think it’s important to keep in perspective that he is a politician, and therefore an open target.
The recent cover of Obama and Michele on the cover of The New Yorker doesn’t vilify their character or persons, as much as it pokes fun at those paranoid psychos that actually espouse views that Obama is “un-American,” –whatever that means, and that he’s a flag-burning extremist (Muslim or otherwise) with nefarious plans for office.
However, I find it equally galling that because so many people see in Obama a hope for a better tomorrow, that he is somehow exempt from political cartooning.
Was the picture offensive or in poor taste? Perhaps. But really isn’t that the role of the artist—to upend thoughts and challenge the statue quo—and in doing so, the cartoonist especially is participating in a time-honored, deeply American tradition, the lampooning of leaders lest these same leaders forget that they too (for all their power) are ultimately only citizens.