Israel Apartheid Showcased In Editorial Cartoons

Not for the first time does this blog speak to the issue of proportionality when it comes to the massive airstrikes unleashed by Israel. The pounding of Gaza, such a confined area, packed with poorly protected people has led to a death toll, as reported this morning in a front-page story in The New York Times, 20 times as high as that caused by Hamas. In Gaza over 1,200 people have been injured. Nearly 200 have been killed.

The international press has reported in-depth on the carnage in this latest decades-long struggle. The editorial cartoonists have perhaps caught the moment best with the following journalism. The drawings are determined to make the point. You know you have an international conscience if these hit a nerve. Taking land in war and through an immoral settlement policy is not a good way to win respect or peace.

Darker Tones For Newspaper Cartoons During Pandemic

I have been watching the cartoons in my local paper, the Wisconsin State Journal, regarding how they catch up to the current pandemic headlines.  The creators of cartoons have many strips ‘in the can’ weeks in advance.  So it takes time, for example, to have Blondie get current on the funnies page to match what readers are learning from the news sections of the paper.

Blondie, on Tuesday April 13th, had a strip about tax day, even though filing this year has been delayed until July while Beetle Bailey still plays off the same template of humor that has been its mainstay for years.

But some cartoons are poking fun at absurd aspects to the crisis, such as ThatABaby.  Or with Heart Of The City.  And Pearls Before Swine.

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But we are also seeing cartoons take a hard turn to the darker tones regarding what we are facing in our daily lives.  I understand the need to incorporate contemporary angst into the strips. Seventy-five years from now these cartoons will also be a way to gauge the depth and enormity of the crisis we are living through.

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But as a news consumer–perhaps too much of one most days—the funny page of the newspaper is a place to step away from the edge of the cliff and get a fast laugh.  With so few places (it seems) left at this time to feel a reprieve from the constant onslaught of awful heart-wrenching news about COVID-19, I would hope to see the cartoon pages be there for us as we need to find uplifting carefree moments.

We need that respite more than ever.

Supreme Court To Donald Trump…..

“Has your client considered a tweet ban?”

 

Pearls Before Swine Mimicked Me Over My Book Sales

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Muslim Superhero To Strike Fear In Conservatives

This will rile a segment of the nation….you just watch and see.

Comic book fans will soon be getting their first glimpse at an unlikely new superhero – a Muslim boy with superpowers who uses a wheelchair.

U.S. philanthropist and businessman Jay Snyder flew 12 disabled Americans to Damascus, Syria, to meet a group of disabled young Syrians, and one of their goals was to come up with story lines for the new superhero.

Liquid Comics is now turning the young people’s ideas into pictures and a story for the first comic.

The superhero’s appearance hasn’t been finalized, but he definitely will be a Muslim boy in a wheelchair. An early sketch shows a boy who lost his legs in a land-mine accident and later becomes the Silver Scorpion after discovering he has the power to control metal with his mind.

Sharad Devarajan, co-founder and CEO of Liquid Comics, said the goal is to release the first comic book – launching the disabled Muslim superhero – in early November in both Arabic and English.

Initially, 50,000 Arabic-language comics will be distributed throughout Syria, and subsequent issues will be distributed elsewhere in the Middle East, Snyder said.

Sunday Echoes: Buz Sawyer

This is one of those memories that you will either have, or not. 

When I was a boy Buz Sawyer was a cartoon carried in the newspaper which landed in the family mailbox every day shortly before noon.  The adventures that confronted Buz all contained high-daring action against such villains as pirates or hijackers.  Week after week the story would grow, and the tension would mount.  How would it all end?

Without fail every Friday there would be a breath-taking-cliff hanger-not-to-be-resolved-until-Monday episode.  One still stands out for me as Buz Sawyer jumps from a plane with a parachute that will not open!  For a ten-year old boy in the early 70’s that was high drama.

What I still find amazing is that in three or four squares, five days a week, a whole story and real interest could build so that I was left wondering how everything would turn out on Monday.  It was Roy Crane, the creator of Buz Sawyer,  who helped me understand the power of cartooning.   Now as an adult I think the craft can convey a stronger message, when done properly, than long-form essays.  Political cartoons are proof of that fact.

Buz Sawyer was always a cartoon, and never became more (or less) than what I came to love each day as a boy.  There were no spin-off movies or television programming.  He was just always a guy who won every bad situation week in, and week out in the local newspaper.

Blondie Cartoon Sums It Up For Me

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