A Republican Reader Asks: Why the Tunnel Vision?
Ms. Reid,Here's my response:
I was shocked this week when I found that even Lloyd Dangle broke away from savaging Republicans, for a change. I was so excited that I immediately went to your latest offering to see if you might have found something, besides Republicans, to ridicule. No, nope, nyet...uh-uh. Don't get me wrong, there's plenty of stupidity and objectionable behavior in my beloved Republican party; but, have you never found something worth mining for your cartoons among the Democrats? I here the Daily Kos is looking for a house cartoonist. You would be perfect for the job!
P.S. I made up the bit about the Daily Kos looking for a cartoonist, but the rest is fairly accurate!
Dear Gene,On another note, it'd be awesome if any of the big-time weblogs really did decide to start paying for cartoons. Hint, hint.
Thanks for the thoughtful letter. It’s true that I spend a good majority of my cartoon energy criticizing Republicans, but I’ve got my reasons.
(1) They’re the party in power, with control—and the job of a satirist is to critique those in power. I wasn’t a cartoonist yet when Clinton was in office, but I guarantee you would have attacked him mercilessly. I’m looking forward to seeing a Democrat in the White House so I can critique him/her, believe you me. Not that I really like any of the Democratic frontrunners—but unlike the GOP slate, at least they don’t actively terrify me.
(2) Sure there are powerful Democrats who have their faults—spinelessness, ineffectiveness, poor organizational skills, lack of integrity, and so forth. I’ve done cartoons in the last year critiquing Clinton (Hillary), Pelosi, Barney Frank, Edwards, Obama and others, and I criticized John Kerry in the runup to the 2004 election.
(3) BUT I only draw one or two cartoons a week, and I’d rather go after what pisses me off the most in one given week. That tends to be things like torture, war, and anti-gay legislation, most of which generally come from the GOP.
All that said, watching Clinton and Obama sling mud at each other lately has been making me ill. So maybe you’ll see some of what you were hoping for sooner than you think.
P.S. The reader wrote back saying he appreciated my response very much, and signed his letter "a grudging fan." Nice!