A cartoon using the bizarre story of a recently killed pet chimpanzee to depict how terrible the just-enacted economic stimulus package is has drawn the ire of media outlets around the world.
Appearing in Wednesday's New York Post, the cartoon (full version available here) shows police officers shooting a chimpanzee with one commenting, "They'll have to find someone else to write the next stimulus bill."
For those missing the reference, a pet chimpanzee was shot to death by police in Connecticut earlier this week when it mysteriously attacked a friend of the owner's.
Media aren't laughing:
- At its most benign, the cartoon suggests that the stimulus bill was so bad, monkeys may as well have written it. Others believe it compares the president to a rabid chimp. Either way, the incorporation of violence and (on a darker level) race into politics is bound to be controversial. Perhaps that's what Delonas wanted. -- Huffington Post
- But the caption cast the cartoon in a more sinister light. "They'll have to find someone else to write the next stimulus bill," it read, prompting accusations that the Post was peddling a longstanding racist slur by portraying president Barack Obama, who signed the bill into law yesterday, as an ape. -- UK Guardian
- A prominent New York newspaper has been accused of racism over a cartoon comparing the administration of Barack Obama to a mad chimpanzee. -- UK Telegraph
- A political cartoon appearing on p. 12 of the New York Post on Wednesday and on its Web site likens the author of the stimulus bill, perhaps a racial reference to President Barack Obama, with a rabid chimpanzee. In the cartoon, two policemen holding guns stand over the dead, bleeding body of the ape (a nod to the chimp that attacked a woman earlier this week in Stamford, Conn., before it was killed). -- E&P
- NY cartoon appears to link Obama to dead chimp -- AP
It's certainly going to be interesting to watch how this gets played on television in the next 24 hours, especially by MSNBC.
That said, what do you think? Is this cartoon over the top or a good satire given all the attention the Post has paid to the chimp story?
Before answering, here's what Post Editor-in-Chief Col Allan said: "The cartoon is a clear parody of a current news event, to wit the shooting of a violent chimpanzee in Connecticut. It broadly mocks Washington's efforts to revive the economy."
Bonus questions: If Obama was white, would media be so upset? Or what if Bush was still President, and he signed porkulus, would there be any outrage over this?