WTF! | The New Yorker

14 07 2008


For all of the people who think we’ve made major progress regarding race and ethnicity, this week’s cover for The New Yorker takes every negative image and rumor and combines them all in one tasteless and highly offensive cover.

The illustration is the brainchild of artist Barry Britt who calls this piece, “The Politics of Fear.” The intent is to satirize the use of scare tactics and misinformation in the the Presidential election used to derail Barack Obama‘s campaign.” So let me get this straight, to make a point about all of the negative rumors and speculation that has occurred during the campaign, you create an image to substantiate and provide fuel to opponents of Senator Obama – in an attempt to cast a light on the issue?

This helps Senator Obama’s campaign how?

The cover features an image of Michelle and Barack Obama that combines every smeary right-wing stereotype imaginable: An image of Obama in a turban and robes fist-bumping his be-afro’d wife, dressed in the military fatigues of a revolutionary and packing a machine gun and some serious ammo. Oh yes, this quaint little scene takes place in the Oval Office, under a picture of Osama bin Laden above a roaring fireplace, in which burns an American flag.

Again, the purpose of putting this issue out other than to inflame the opposition and to sell more issues helps Senator Obama’s campaign how?

Obama campaign spokesman Bill Burton called it “tasteless and offensive” and, according to Jake Tapper at ABC, another high-profile Obama supporter called it “as offensive a caricature as any magazine could publish.”

Blitt defends the cover, saying that “It seemed to me that depicting the concept would show it as the fear-mongering ridiculousness that it is.”

All we can say is that Mr. Britt is giving the American people far too much credit if he thinks that engaging in these types of smear tactics under the guise of education or enlightening the public doesn’t do as much harm than good.

Don’t forget to check out the cover story, “Making It: How Chicago Shaped Obama.”

Just one more hurdle that Senator Obama has climb on the way to making history!

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3 responses

14 07 2008
test » Blog Archive » WTF! - The New Yorker

[…] – The New Yorker sam wrote an interesting post today onHere’s a quick excerptSo let me get this straight, to make […]

14 07 2008
will

Really. It’s not some trashy mag. It’s the New Yorker. I mean, THE NEW YORKER!!!!!!!! THE NEW YORKER!! THE NEW F**KING YORKER! THIS ISN’T SOME TRASHY TABLOID FROM MIDDLE AMERICA. THIS IS THE NEW YORKER!!!!!!!!!!!!

16 07 2008
Nell Minow

I suspect that the New Yorker got just what they wanted from that cover — publicity and newsstand sales. I also suspect that it is so outrageous that the Obama campaign will benefit in the long run from some sort of sympathy backlash.

Take a look at the Huffington Post’s idea of what a McCain cover like this one would look like!

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