MCLEAN, VA (2/18/09) – The New York Post is sorely misguided in its efforts to downplay the serious lapse in judgment exhibited in today’s editorial cartoon by Sean Delonas. To think that the cartoonist and the responsible editors at the paper did not see the racist overtones of the finished product should insult their intelligence. Instead, they celebrate their own lack of perspective and criticize those who call it what it is: tone deaf at best, overtly racist at worst.
“I question the judgment of the editorial editors to move this to print as well as the diversity of its staff that would let them think this passes as comedy,” said Barbara Ciara, president of the National Association of Black Journalists and vice president of UNITY: Journalists of Color.
UNITY President Rafael Olmeda also criticized the explanation offered by the New York Post. “Are we to believe that the image of a slain chimpanzee juxtaposed with a comment about the stimulus package would not lead reasonable people to draw a comparison with the person with whom the stimulus package is most associated?” Olmeda said. “Surely, Mr. Delonas and the editors can’t be that obtuse.”
UNITY condemns the cartoon as well as the newspaper’s weak explanation.