September 24, 2004

Debate over Boondocks being yanked from some papers

A number of newspapers, including large ones like The Washington Post and the New York Daily News, have pulled cartoonist Aaron McGruder's The Boondocks this week, in response to a series of segments surrounding the fictional Russell Simmons game show, "Can A N****A Get A Job?" (You can fill in the asterisks).

Segments of the series of strips include a woman who would rather sleep than work, and a black man smoking marijuana in a boardroom (not unlike NBC's The Apprentice).

A humor columnist for The Washington Post blasted that paper's "pathetically weak and wrong decision" on the comic.

Universal Press Syndicate gave papers a choice of running the strip with the three symbols in the middle of the "N" word, or with symbols for all five letters in the word, or re-running an old strip. The most severely edited version also deletes the knives from the knife fight. This is the version carried by the Los Angeles Times.

Kathie Kerr, director of communications at Universal Press Syndicate, told E&P that at least four papers killed this week's strip entirely. She said that McGruder had not commented, adding that he is "kind of his own wild child" and that this is "not the first time" the "N" word had been used in the strip.

Greg Melvin, associate editor at Universal, called the content "defensible because it's really trenchant satire," in an interview with a St. Petersburg Times reporter.

Universal Press is no stranger to controversy tied to the "N" word, having caught flack from Project 21 (as well as myself) over the use of the word by political cartoonist Ted Rall over the summer.

Posted by mhking at September 24, 2004 06:15 PM

SO, what's your view?

I think The Washington Post are wussy men.

Posted by: DarkStar at September 26, 2004 05:31 PM

Since I let my Sunday subscription expire a year ago, I really don't have a dog in this contest, per se. I never "got it". T'was just another piece of "must read" MSM. NOT!

Later, having seen McGruder in a couple of black roundtables on PBS-- one was with Armstrong, and I thot he was either going to give McGruder the whupping that he should have had as a kid or stick a bar of soap in his mouth -- I'm not impressed with this moonbat. In my mind, he's just an angry punk and 4 more years of Bush ought to get him foaming.

In fact, now that I think about it, the next time the local paper calls with their subscription drive, I'll suggest that they send Boondocks to the boondocks. How's that for market-driven censorship? :) Of course, should he get start getting dropped altogether, some will be sure to cry racism/censorship. Good riddance, Adventures of Spiderman could replace him for all I care.

Posted by: Andy at September 30, 2004 02:17 AM
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