Cartoon perpetuated Muslim stereotypes

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Rick McKee's July 8 cartoon represented a new low in The Augusta Chronicle's editorial bigotry and continued perpetuation of harmful and inaccurate stereotypes.

The cartoon portrayed two armed men in a cave reacting to the announcement that one of the responsibilities of NASA's figurehead leader is to use his position to improve diplomatic relations with Muslim countries. McKee depicted one of the men exclaiming, "We just want to kill American swine! It's not rocket science!"

By portraying terrorists as stand-ins for the Muslim world as a whole, the cartoon advances a false and offensive idea that Islam is an inherently violent religion that has poisoned its adherents against America.

Having just returned from a six-week trip to Jordan and Palestinian territory, I can respond with firsthand experience to the ridiculous portrayal of the Muslim world as a place defined by men with guns standing around in caves hating American swine. Indeed, the vast majority of citizens of Muslim countries want nothing other than peace and justice in the world.

Islam has produced no more extremists and advocates of violence than has Christianity, and many Muslim countries today are filled predominantly with everyday people who have more in common with you and me than with the terrorists depicted in McKee's stereotyping cartoon.

The Augusta Chronicle, in perpetuating these baseless stereotypes and misconceptions about Muslims, risks contributing to cultural misunderstandings that can only further damage Americas developing relationship with an increasingly important geopolitical region.

I implore the editorial staff of The Chronicle to put this sort of bigotry and prejudice behind them, joining together with people of all faiths around the world to work for the common goals of peace and justice.

Matthew Shafer

Augusta

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overburdened_taxpayer
116
Points
overburdened_taxpayer 07/11/10 - 05:57 am
0
0

Rick depicted two terrorists

Rick depicted two terrorists in a cave. If you choose to believe that all Muslims are represented by the two characters then that is your problem Mr. Shafer. I choose to believe that it depicts TERRORIST Muslims, not ALL Muslims.

overburdened_taxpayer
116
Points
overburdened_taxpayer 07/11/10 - 06:23 am
0
0

Where was your letter of

Where was your letter of indignation every time Rick had a buffet cartoon where the people in it are always fat? I've been to the buffets in town. Not every person is fat even though following your analogy you would assume that everyone at a buffet is.

I implore people like Mr Shafer to quit wearing their feelings on a sleeve and get over it. All this PC and being offended junk reminds me of the insurance commercial with the crybaby on the couch of the psychologist drill sergeant talking about how he's sad.

americafirst
958
Points
americafirst 07/11/10 - 07:14 am
0
0

If the suicide bomb fits,

If the suicide bomb fits, wear it.

johnston.cliff
2
Points
johnston.cliff 07/11/10 - 07:31 am
0
0

Matthew Shafer, do you have

Matthew Shafer, do you have any friends that read? If so, maybe you can ask them to try to explain "tunnel vision" to you. There's a chance one of the definitions will apply to your letter. And maybe you can ask them why you should be embarrassed by this silly LTE.

soldout
1280
Points
soldout 07/11/10 - 08:01 am
0
0

Keep up the good work Rick

Keep up the good work Rick and enjoy the freedom of the press while it still exists.

overburdened_taxpayer
116
Points
overburdened_taxpayer 07/11/10 - 08:06 am
0
0

My thoughts exactly soldout.

My thoughts exactly soldout.

apex24
0
Points
apex24 07/11/10 - 09:04 am
0
0

Mr. Shafer please take this

Mr. Shafer please take this test and see how you do.

1. 1968 Bobby Kennedy was shot and killed by:
a. Superman
> b. Jay Leno
> c. Harry Potter
> d. A Muslim male extremist between the ages of 17 and 40
>
> 2. In 1972 at the Munich Olympics, athletes were kidnapped and massacred by:
> a. Olga Corbett
> b. Sitting Bull
> c. Arnold Schwarzenegger
> d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40
>
> 3.. In 1979, the US embassy in Iran was taken over by:
> a. Lost Norwegians
> b. Elvis
> c. A tour bus full of 80-year-old women
> d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40
>
> 4. During the 1980's a number of Americans were kidnapped in Lebanon by:
> a. John Dillinger
> b. The King of Sweden
> c. The Boy Scouts
> d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40
>
> 5. In 1983, the US Marine barracks in Beirut was blown up by:
> a. A pizza delivery boy
> b. Pee Wee Herman
> c. Geraldo Rivera
> d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40
>
> 6. In 1985 the cruise ship Achille Lauro was hijacked and a 70 year old American passenger wasmurdered and thrown overboard in his wheelchair by:
> a. The Smurfs
> b. Davey Jones
> c. The Little Mermaid
> d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40
>
> 7. In 1985 TWA flight 847 was hijacked at Athens , and a US Navy diver trying to rescue passengers was murdered by:
> a. Captain Kidd
> b. Charles Lindberg
> c. Mother Teresa
> d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40
>
> 8. In 1988, Pan Am Flight 103 was bombed by:
> a. Scooby Doo
> b. The Tooth Fairy
> c. The Sundance Kid
> d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40
>
> 9. In 1993 the World Trade Center was bombed the first time by:
> a. Richard Simmons
> b. Grandma Moses
> c.. Michael Jordan
> d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40
>
> 10. In 1998, the US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania were bombed by:
> a.. Mr. Rogers
> b. Hillary Clinton, to distract attention from Wild Bill's women problems
> c. The World Wrestling Federation
> d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40
>
> 11. On 9/11/01, four airliners were hijacked; two were used as missiles to take out the World Trade Centers and of the remaining two, one crashed into the US Pentagon and the other was diverted and crashed by the passengers. Thousands of people were killed by:
> a. Bugs Bunny, Wiley E. Coyote, Daffy Duck and Elmer Fudd
> b. The Supreme Court of Florida
> c. Mr Bean
> d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40
>
> 12. In 2002 the United States fought a war in Afghanistan against:
> a. Enron
> b. The Lutheran Church
> c. The NFL
> d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40
>
> 13.. In 2002 reporter Daniel Pearl was kidnapped and murdered by:
> a. Bonnie and Clyde
> b. Captain Kangaroo`
> c. Billy Graham
> d. Muslim male extremists mostly between the ages of 17 and 40
>
> 14. And now we can add: In 2009, 31 people wounded and 13 American Soldiers murdered on base at Fort Hood by a Major that was known as
> a: You guessed it - A Muslim male extremist between the age of 17 and 40
>
> No, I really don't see a pattern here to justify profiling, do you? So, to ensure we Americans never offend anyone, particularly fanatics intent on killing us, airport security screeners will no longer be allowed to profile certain people. They must conduct random searches of 80-year-old women, little kids, airline pilots with proper identification, secret agents who are members of the President's security detail, 85-year old Congressmen with metal hips, and Medal of Honor winner and former Governor Joe Foss, but leave Muslim Males between the ages 17 and 40 alone lest they be guilty of profiling.
>
> Let's send this to as many people as we can so that the Gloria Aldreds and other dunder-headed attorneys along with Federal Justices that want to thwart common sense, feel ashamed of themselves -- if they have any such sense.
>
> As the writer of the award winning story
> 'Forrest Gump' so aptly put it,
> 'Stupid is as stupid does.'

getalife
4
Points
getalife 07/11/10 - 09:28 am
0
0

Rick, great cartoon.

Rick, great cartoon.

Miss Hap
0
Points
Miss Hap 07/11/10 - 09:39 am
0
0

Rick shouldn't have drawn

Rick shouldn't have drawn those innocent muslim men holding weapons while standing in a mosque surrounded by fellow worshipers. It gives the wrong impression of these people.
Wait a moment, whats that you say?
The illistration is of two men with rifles, ammo and gernades hiding out in a CAVE just like the real terrorist are doing? And you say that the terrorist that hijacked our planes, dropped our buildings and tried to blow up Time Square, etc. are muslims?!

Come on Shafer, you can't be that niave (I hope) as to being incapable of understanding that muslim terrorists are responsible for murdering and causing great harm to innocent American citizens and have shown that they have every intention to continue doing so at every given chance. Americans as a whole are very tolerant of muslims here in our country in spite of what they've done to us. We haven't been blowing up their mosques or sniper shooting their people who live and worship here. As an American I'm offended by what the muslim terrorists have done and want to continue doing to us and find Rick's cartoon a very mild chiding of their attitudes. Keep up the wonderful work Rick!

Chillen
16
Points
Chillen 07/11/10 - 10:22 am
0
0

Lets see. Recent headline

Lets see. Recent headline involving the muslim world.

Iranian woman to be stoned to death for alleged adultry. This after receiving 5 years in prison and 99 lashes.

Religion of peace. Yea right.

bettyboop
7
Points
bettyboop 07/11/10 - 10:28 am
0
0

LOL..sorry Mr. Shafer looks

LOL..sorry Mr. Shafer looks like you lose this one........................

TheFederalist
0
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TheFederalist 07/11/10 - 11:09 am
0
0

Matthew Shafer, your words

Matthew Shafer, your words are bilge sir, and you should be ashamed of your total admiration for an extremist religion and culture that is at war with the entire world, and with whom, by the very words of their holy book, the Qur'an, exclude the very possibility of co-existance with others. Here are the passages, line and verse:
IX.29 "Fight those who do not believe.",
IX.5 "Slay the pagans wherever you fight them", or
II.187 "Slay them wherever you catch them".
Further, the very basis of the muslim faith advocates the institution of Sharia law, and I will not even try to list the outrageous list of harmful, demeaning, and intolerant aspects of this barbaric set of rules, that most foreign muslim nations live by daily. However, the most shameful aspect of your letter sir, is that you have totally ignored the fact that many extremist factions exist within the muslim world, and these terrorist cells are at war with the US, and hell bent on destroying our citizens and culture and replacing it with theirs. That sir, aligns you completely with the rest of the liberal, bleeding heart pacifists that falsely believe that if you just open your arms to embrace the entire world's religions, then you are doing good and helping fight intolerance. Horsefeathers! The USA will continue to stand up to these continued attempts to laud the muslim faith, despite the few sympathizers like you, that try and muddy the waters, and defend those that continue even now to breed terrorism. Yes, the AC depiction is accurate and they do NOT represent all muslims. You obviously simply see what you want to see and are easily offended. Rick's outstanding cartoon instead depicts the extremists that even now are constructing even more powerful IED's and suicide bomber belts to try and kill as many Americans as they can, and yes, are even now hiding out in caves in Afghanistan, waiting to ambush our troops. Your words sir, imho, are untrue, misguided and downright pathetic.

TheFederalist
0
Points
TheFederalist 07/11/10 - 11:13 am
0
0

I almost forgot. What do you

I almost forgot. What do you think the reaction would be worldwide, if instead of muslims, the new head of NASA had said that his most important mission was to reach out to the CHRISTIAN world, to make them feel better about their history and their contributions to math and science? I wonder....

N. Augusta is for Lovers
0
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N. Augusta is for Lovers 07/11/10 - 11:21 am
0
0

Whoa whoa WHOA. I'm glad to

Whoa whoa WHOA. I'm glad to see that everyone has ridiculously overreacted to this well-meaning if slightly high-handed LTE. I think you've actually proved the point Shafer was trying to make: the cartoon took an event that addressed all Muslims and narrowed the focus down to exactly those we all have reason to fear--the terrorists in the caves. The problem is that McKee (and all of you, apparently) hear the word "Muslim" and immediately go to that image of cave dwellers. Talk about tunnel vision.

KSL
106416
Points
KSL 07/11/10 - 11:29 am
0
0

The only overreaction here is

The only overreaction here is the letter writer's and yours N.

baronvonreich
0
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baronvonreich 07/11/10 - 11:43 am
0
0

Organized religion is the

Organized religion is the main source of hatred in the world. It is violent, irrational, intolerant, allied to racism, tribalism, bigotry, and invested in ignorance and hostility. Let's hope the world eliminates religion before religion destroys the world.

Jake
30426
Points
Jake 07/11/10 - 12:07 pm
0
0

The Augusta Chronicle has a

The Augusta Chronicle has a long history of editorial bigotry and promoting harmful and inaccurate stereotypes. Take a look at the "Hambone" cartoons that used to grace the front pages of the Chronicle in the 20's and early 30's.

Fiat_Lux
13904
Points
Fiat_Lux 07/11/10 - 12:49 pm
0
0

Note to "N. Aug is for

Note to "N. Aug is for Lovers": 1. See the comment immediately preceding your own (11:21). 2. Get a clue.

KSL
106416
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KSL 07/11/10 - 01:10 pm
0
0

Jake, are there no Muslim

Jake, are there no Muslim terrorists hiding out in caves now and no Muslim terrorists anywhere in the world who wish death to Americans? If there are none, then the cartoon might be considered inappropriate.

KSL
106416
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KSL 07/11/10 - 01:15 pm
0
0

We are getting way too

We are getting way too politically correct if we are not allowed to draw or read and laugh at cartoons which depict the truth about certain members of a religion or culture for fear of harming the sensitives of the good members.

KSL
106416
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KSL 07/11/10 - 01:17 pm
0
0

Had Rick drawn a cartoon

Had Rick drawn a cartoon making fun of the KKK, would you very same folks be jumping all over him and the Augusta Chronicle?

rmwhitley
5107
Points
rmwhitley 07/11/10 - 01:23 pm
0
0

I've never heard the First

Unpublished

I've never heard the First muslim apologize or denounce their horrific acts of terror on the "Infidels". they appear to be uncivilized and like it that way.

Lou Stewall
223
Points
Lou Stewall 07/11/10 - 02:03 pm
0
0

Is it a "stereotype" or the

Is it a "stereotype" or the truth that you will be killed for bringing a Bible into Mecca or Medina? The practice of polygamy promotes poverty, overpopulation, pederasty, bestiality, inbreeding, isolation and ignorance. You ignorant liberals who want to protect homosexuals, minorities and women don't have the guts to face the truth about Islam, where these people are brutalized and murdered. One religion invites you cordially to join, the other kills you if you try to leave. Now, how can you call them equal, or equally evil? Where Ottomans invaded, no one lived to tell the tale, so your take on history is totally bass-ackward.

N. Augusta is for Lovers
0
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N. Augusta is for Lovers 07/11/10 - 02:05 pm
0
0

Re: KSL's comment: "Had Rick

Re: KSL's comment: "Had Rick drawn a cartoon making fun of the KKK, would you very same folks be jumping all over him and the Augusta Chronicle?"

Yes, I would, if the cartoon was a comment on a presidential effort to reach out to all Southerners. I'm a Southerner, and I'm not a member of the KKK, and I'd be offended that McKee chose the most violent and hateful part of my culture to represent me. Wouldn't you?

N. Augusta is for Lovers
0
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N. Augusta is for Lovers 07/11/10 - 02:08 pm
0
0

(In other words, I don't

(In other words, I don't think anyone's defending Islamic terrorists here. I'm just saying, obviously, all Muslims don't deserve to be identified with those guys in the cave.)

KSL
106416
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KSL 07/11/10 - 02:24 pm
0
0

N. I would know that he was

N. I would know that he was not meaning me if he drew a cartoon about KKK's, just as I think most non-terrorist Muslims should understand that the cartoon was NOT directed at them.

Do you actually think Rick thinks ALL Muslims have guns and ammunition strapped to their backs. The President's directive was to reach out to Muslims. Why can't you people see that the cartoon depicts in satire a reaction by two Muslims who indeed ARE terrorists.

Geez, how does this fly over the heads of so many people?

afadel
371
Points
afadel 07/11/10 - 02:29 pm
0
0

The Daily Show dealt with

The Daily Show dealt with this non-issue of NASA's worldwide outreach:

http://www.thedailyshow.com/full-episodes/wed-july-7-2010-daniel-okrent

It's the first segment.

N. Augusta is for Lovers
0
Points
N. Augusta is for Lovers 07/11/10 - 02:30 pm
0
0

I recognize the satire, and I

I recognize the satire, and I actually don't think it's a completely terrible thing... but look at these comments. I think it's pretty clear a lot of Chronicle readers don't take it as a satire at all. And I think McKee has a responsibility to consider his audience when he's addressing such controversial issues...

KSL
106416
Points
KSL 07/11/10 - 02:43 pm
0
0

Now you are saying no freedom

Now you are saying no freedom of speech. You are in a hole. You need to stop digging.

dichotomy
26852
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dichotomy 07/11/10 - 03:11 pm
0
0

I think the cartoon was an

I think the cartoon was an equal and opposite reaction to the stupidity of the Obama administration policy about the "primary" mission for NASA. I must admit that, before the cartoon was published, that exact image is what came into my mind when I saw the news on TV about Obama's instructions to the head of NASA. I know that all muslims are not actively trying to kill us, although I suspect a lot of them think it's an okay thing to do. But the ones that ARE in a cave somewhere plotting our extinction must have heard Obama's new NASA policy and thought "what idiots these Americans are". We can't spend NASA money to carry our own astonauts and their supplies to the space station with an American made spacecraft but we can expend the NASA budget to make kissy face with muslims. What a crock of crap. Wonder how many rocket scientists and technicians will be fired so that Obama can waste this pot of money like he did the "stimulus" $trillion.

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