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Another Instance Of Racial Insensitivity


Some have interpreted a New York Post cartoon as comparing President Barack Obama to the fed up chimpanzee that went berserk and was gunned down by police drew criticism from racially sensitive civil rights leaders, elected officials, and others who said the cartoon reflected racist stereotypes of blacks people as monkeys and lower primates by people in the dominant community.  The cartoon by Sean Delonas refers to the chimpanzee that was killed by police in Stamford, Connecticut, after it mauled a friend of its owner.  Some added the fact that the cartoon suggests that Mr. Obama should be or would be assassinated.  Some urged a boycott of the New York Post and the companies that will continue to advertise in it without voicing some kind of outrage.

Civil rights activist Reverend Al Sharpton described the cartoon as troubling given the history of racist attacks on the black people as being synonymous with monkeys.  T-shirts portraying Obama as the children’s book character Curious George, a monkey, made occasional appearances among audience members at Republican rallies during last year’s election campaign, and a similar stuffed doll continues to be advertised online.

However, Col Allan, editor-in-chief of the Post, defended the work saying, “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.  Again, Al Sharpton reveals himself as nothing more than a publicity opportunist.”

Maybe Mr. Sharpton is doing nothing but looking for more work because issues of racial disparity have shriveled up like the rest of the economy.  But if the American people would take a more sensitive approach towards matter of race then we wouldn’t have this problem.  Instead, so many people want to excuse even the most disgusting forms of racial insensitivity as just a prank or a joke or a private matter.

In the recent past we’ve seen people come out the woodwork to defend the bounty hunter who refers to his son’s black girlfriend as little more than a gold digging nigger out to take everything the bounty hunter has worked for.  We’ve seen people come out to defend Senators who stand in front of campaign rallies who point to the lone black person in crowd and very publicly used a racial slur in reference to the minority to a roar of applause.  People defend white students hanging nooses off of school trees as little more than fun loving scamps.  People jump to the defense of the talk radio program host who refers to black women as nappy headed ho’s.  And people jump out of this same woodwork to defend portrayals of Mr. Obama as a derivative of Curious George because it is nothing more than the nature of the political campaign beast.

And that’s just the recent racial disparity that we tolerate.  There are years, decades, even centuries of racial disparity, racial hypocrisy, racial subjugation, racial inequality, racial caricatures, and so much more that constantly portrays black people as the inferior of white people.  We’ve gone through entire eras of institutionalized slavery, Jim Crow laws, separate but far from equal, white only conveniences and facilities, and a very long list of etcetera.

Because we as a national collective choose to avoid issues of race we can never meet the challenges of our racial dysfunction that continues to percolate beneath the surface.  Black people can deal with a lack of education and employment and the like.  For years, black people have dealt with issues of foreclosure and the lack of employment in the black community.  But as soon as these conditions hit the broader, racially generic dominant community so thoroughly controlled by white people then we have to have a stimulus package.  What’s good enough for the black goose is never good enough for the white gander.

If we were to ever make an honest, concerted effort to confront our racism head on we could perhaps get to a point where people wouldn’t feel so free to wear their racist fueled social impairment on their proverbial sleeves and others would not feel the need to wear a racially charged chip on the shoulder.

Unfortunately, to even make the suggestion that we should take the time to confront this issue as a nation of people with a common goal for a better future is to invite ridicule.  Mr. Obama said as much last year when he gave his first speech to distance himself from Reverend Jeremiah Wright.  Mr. Obama’s call for racial healing was met with derision from people like ultra conservative Pat Buchanan who responded that black people should be on their knees thanking white people for our perpetual state of racial inequality.  And true to form, people from the dominant community defend other people from the dominant community who defend the racial disparity of the status quo.

Thursday, February 19, 2009 - Posted by | African Americans, Barack Obama, Black Community, Black People, Life, Racism, Thoughts


  1. I could only hope that as a people, we heed the call for action when it comes to bigger issues than a cartoon. I find it disheartening that something like this and even the remarks of Don Imus infuriates people to action. There are many issues which need a voice in this country that directly impact the lives of people of color that are left by the wayside.

    Good post

    Comment by RiPPa | Thursday, February 19, 2009 | Reply

    • Thanks for the feedback RiPPa,

      It would be nice. But I’d be glad to see black people coming together for the even the smallest of issues that betters the black community.


      Comment by brotherpeacemaker | Thursday, February 19, 2009 | Reply

  2. The cartoon is wrong on so many levels. On the TV news this morning in New York they didn’t find anyone defending the cartoon. Everyone they found on the street was appalled when they saw the cartoon. One guy was confused: What’s the cartoonist saying? That the chimp is supposed to be like Obama? That doesn’t make any sense. I don’t get it.

    I do hope that the attention given to the cartoon doesn’t somehow help the cause of the NY Post. It’s a perpetually angry newspaper, editorially, with screaming headlines. I read it over the shoulders of other subway riders, sometimes. I almost never agree with them. Most telling to me is that the Post defends it and uses the occasion to take a jab at Al Sharpton, as if he’s the only one offended and everyone else thinks this is just fine. The media treatment of Sharpton is usually pretty poor, I’ve noticed, but this time I think there’s broad agreement that he has a valid point.

    Comment by Betsy Hansel | Thursday, February 19, 2009 | Reply

    • Thanks for the feedback Betsy Hansel,

      I was listening to NPR and they had another cartoonist trying to explain the possible perspective of the original cartoonist. The guy kept trying to say that he’s wasn’t trying to defend the guy but to give a possible explanation. Sounded like he was trying to give the guy an excuse if you ask me. But I do agree that most people didn’t find the cartoon funny at all. And the dominant community loves to use Mr. Sharpton as a whipping boy for black community issues.


      Comment by brotherpeacemaker | Thursday, February 19, 2009 | Reply

  3. I FEEL YOU ON THIS! If you’re interested, visit MY Blog at for comments on Delonas’ cartoon, et al.

    FYI, I’ve added you to my Blogroll.

    Comment by Selena | Thursday, February 19, 2009 | Reply

  4. “And true to form, people from the dominant community defend other people from the dominant community who defend the racial disparity of the status quo.”

    This is the fuck’n issue. This is why it keeps going.
    Did you see Pat and the other rich husband of the bailed out banker on Hardball last night. What a fuck’n shame.
    So, Pat get to spewing out these fuck’n numbers like they mean anything without any background as to why the numbers are like they are. Like we just came over here like this.
    it’s like everytime we make an effort to talk to these people they just refuse to accept the facts of the matter.

    I know I’m preaching to the choir here, BrotherPeacemaker, but it just tears me tookus when i witness this shit. Every fuck’n day.
    We need to get the hell out of here, YO!!!!

    Comment by Damien | Friday, February 20, 2009 | Reply

  5. “I was listening to NPR and they had another cartoonist trying to explain the possible perspective of the original cartoonist.”

    Who ya gonna believe. Me or your lying eyes?
    These people really think we’re fuck’n stupid.

    Comment by Damien | Friday, February 20, 2009 | Reply

  6. Enough of this crappola. I’m white and tired of being portrayed as a racist. I haven’t heard a white person disparage a black person for over 30 years. Get a grip people, there are those who are attempting to put us at each other’s throats when the reality is we should be at the throats of those who are pitting us against each. Who would that be? Well, who owns the media? It, after all, was their decision to publish this crap. Peace!

    Comment by Fed Up | Tuesday, March 3, 2009 | Reply

    • Thanks for the feedback Fed Up,

      But nobody portrayed you as a racist. However, if the shoe fits then…

      I don’t know you from Adam. But I do know that the vast majority of the people who do own the media are from the white community. I know the majority of white people don’t care to help the black community. I know that there is an orthodoxy that says black people are inferior to white people. By every social measure the black community falls short against the white community. So I think there is some racial disparity that continues to this day. We talk about all of this being little more than crappola. But the fact of the matter is that racial disparity is alive and well.


      Comment by brotherpeacemaker | Tuesday, March 3, 2009 | Reply

  7. I am a White Woman MARRIED to a Black Man and TRUST ME RACISM IS ALIVE AND WELL IN 2009 AMERICA….We get it from both the Black Community as well as the White Community.And the IGNORANCE of THESE PEOPLE really makes me MAD..What is so hard to understand?? A MAN is A MAN and A WOMAN is A WOMAN NO MATTER WHAT COLOR THEIR SKIN HAPPENS TO BE!!! I did not marry my husband because he was BLACK,I married him because he is a Good,Honest,Hard Working Man also because I loved being in his presence,he treated me with Love and Respect..I VOTED for Barack Obama not because he was BLACK but because HE WAS THE BEST CANDIDATE.The fact that History was made was just a added bonus..The Racist remarks,cartoons,threats,and all the rest of it is shameful and it makes me feel less than charitable towards my own people.

    Comment by Booper Looper | Thursday, July 30, 2009 | Reply

  8. you are welcome on

    Comment by CartOOnist ARiF | Monday, July 25, 2011 | Reply

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