Times have been tough for cartoons and cartoonists. Some of these nasty little drawings have caused a lot of problems, recently...
First, there were the infamous anti-Muslim cartoons published recently by the Danish magazine, Jyllands-Posten. The cartoons published by that magazine sparked violent protests around the world. What isn't as well known is that Jyllands-Posten is a reactionary, right-wing publication that has, in the past, refused to run similar cartoons involving Jesus. The violence evoked by these cartoons is inexcusable, but the magazine's motive in publishing them is suspect, at best.
Then, there was a cartoon by Tom Toles that prompted a rather menacing response from two members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff at the Pentagon. As the folks at AmericaBlog put it, "The US government just arrested one of President Bush's top political critics for
threatening his life with a t-shirt. So why not now threaten a top political cartoonist for drawing a cartoon that the Pentagon doesn't like?"
Coincidentally, right around the same time
I had a run-in as a result of one of my own subversive doodles.
You may recall "Regime Change", a drawing I ran back
in ROWRBRAZZLE #77. This drawing has been displayed in
several art shows, graced posters, signs, stickers, and was even
published in a collection of anti-war art and poetry (Voices
of Resistance, Women's Student Activist Collective, 2003).
However, it was regarded as "too political" for Yerf
(an online archive of "furry" art at http://www.yerf.com)
and was deleted -- supposedly because of complaints from other
Yerf members (though I think I know who complained about this
piece, and I suspect his problem was more personal than political).
Of course, everyone knows censoring a cartoonist is the LAST thing you should ever do -- it only encourages them! I was determined to respond to this affront, so I created "T-Shirt Trouble", which depicts the "Circle-A Kitty" (as I call the character) wearing a T-Shirt similar to the one that got Cindy Sheehan arrested at Bush's State of the Union address. The reference is a bit obscure, but I figured the right-wing kooks who whined about my "Regime Change" drawing probably aren't smart enough to figure that out. And it looks like I've been right so far.
I've also created "The
New Regime", a more straightforward commentary on the material
one typically finds on the Yerf archive:
(Amusingly enough, immediately after I posted this image another Yerf-er posted -- you guessed it! -- a furry pin-up drawing.)
Assuming I don't get arrested for drawing any more "dangerous cartoons," or for singing along to "London Calling" by the Clash (as happened to one unlucky fellow in England recently), I should be back in another 60 days or so. Keep up the good work, `Brazzlers!