Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Oliphant's Palin cartoon on Post website shakes teapot

Ken Gurley in his "Cartoonist Lampoons Palin's Pentecostal Faith," Houston Chronicle Houston Belief blog 9/15/2008, takes issue with a cartoon by Pat Oliphant that ran on the Post's website.

He wrote, Palin's Pentecostal faith is now being lampooned by Pat Oliphant, Washington Post cartoonist. Oliphant has been called by the New York Times Magazine the "most influential editorial cartoonist" now working.

Sadly, Oliphant is not a Washington Post cartoonist, but works for a syndicate.

Continuing his misrepresentation and misapprehensions, he concludes,

Speaking of the Danish cartoonist, the editor of that newspaper issued an apology for its extreme insensitivity to the Muslim faith. What about it Washington Post? Do you want to go down this slippery slope in the pick-and-choose mode of offending religions? Even your own ombudsman said this was beyond the pale. Why not pony up an apology?

Well, no, the Danish editor didn't apologize. In a Radio Free Europe interview from March 29, 2008, Fleming Rose said, And in fact, one of the leading Muslims who had tried to take me and my newspaper to court, and who had said at the time that this would never end until Flemming Rose apologized to 1.5 billion Muslims, this time came forward saying: "OK, we now know from the court decision that we live in a country where it is allowed to ridicule and defame our religion. We don't like it but we have to accept it."

In any event, one wonders why Ken Gurley would like his religion compared to one whose members, after months of inciting to be sure, rioted over cartoon depictions. Perhaps he'd like a story on Radio Free Europe about it.

And the Post, again, is not Oliphant's newspaper. What the ombudsman said was, "Readers were right to complain; I will deal with political cartooning in another column. Political cartoons and comics aren't selected at the way they are for The Post in print; they are automatically posted." I think Howell is wrong about the "right to complain" remark, but she says she'll address the issue of political cartoons in another article. The Post had... 350 complaints! Shocking! I wonder how many of them actually even buy the paper since the cartoon only ran online. I certainly didn't see it until people started complaining about it, so I appreciate the fact that they did and I could then enjoy the cartoon.

Christianity Today also blogged on the tempest "Readers say Washington Post cartoon lampooned their faith," by Sarah Pulliam.

Also, in That Darn Toles news, the Wall Street Journal's John Fund noted on his blog "A better riposte might have been to note that Mr. Obama seemed to be channeling a hard-left newspaper cartoonist named Tom Toles." Toles was not actually identified, but he is the Washington Post's cartoonist.

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