Did you know that British intelligence says Al Qaeda operatives are planning an attack “on par with Hiroshima and Nagasaki,” according to the July 25 National Journal? Probably, not.
Did you know that the July 21 New Yorker cover features a cartoon of a turban- wearing Barack Obama fist-bumping terrorist wife, Michelle, in front of a fireplace with a burning American flag? Definitely, yes.
Geez, we have to get our priorities straight. The situation in Afghanistan and Pakistan is rapidly deteriorating, and the New York Times slaps a story on its front page today saying its okay to laugh at Saint Barack.
David Remnick, New Yorker editor, says satire is the spirit of the cover. The cover intends to “hold up a mirror to the absurd.” He did a heckuva job.
Kelly McBride, ethics group leader at the Poynter Institute, points out a flaw in Remnick’s argument. She believes readers of the NYer “get the cover.” However, “when satire goes beyond its intended audience, it often becomes offensive.”
McBride faults the NYer for not doing a good job of explaining the Obama cover. A debate on its website would be nice. “By not doing so, folks at the New Yorker reinforce the notion that they are arrogant and insensitive,” blogged McBride.
NYer readers (I am a long-time subscriber) tend to be a tad on the arrogant and insensitive side. The U.S. would be better off if the NYer had many more readers.
This blogger though is puzzled by those who say the “great unwashed” will not understand Remnick’s stab at satire. They underestimate the intelligence of the American people.
There is no need for the NYer to do a payback cover of John McCain “in a wheelchair, drooling and asking where his teeth are, while staring at a computer screen in dismay,” as suggested by “Gadfly” on the comment section of the odwyerpr.com’s item about Obama cover feedback..
That would be overkill, but I wonder how Gadfly’s cartoon would have handled McCain’s war medals.