Subscribe via RSS Feed

Heh. Ha heh ha, heh heh ha, hold on now — let me, heh, catch my breath. He drew a — a what? Ha heh, heh, ha heh heh ha, heh, indeed!

[ 291 ] July 20, 2013 |

Thank you, National Review Online:

For this “cartoon” demonstrating that George Zimmerman’s acquittal is analogous to the legacy of white-on-black violence in America because Al Sharpton is a knotted oak. Only a racist would look at that and think it referenced something so vile as a lynching. Those noosed truths — like someone else we know — don’t even have heads. For all we know they’re wind chimes in their Sunday finest. Only a racist would notice that they’re headless necks from root to wick, because only a racist would associate something as basic to the human condition as fire to the history of racism in the United States. Without fire generations of Americans of all races would’ve frozen to –

– and I can’t do it. Michael Ramirez’s “Lynched” serves a single purpose: to allow the overwhelmingly white readership of NRO to believe that the imagined lynching of an abstract value is morally equivalent to the actual lynching of actual human beings. Because it’s been a long time since white people could really enjoy an image of a lynching. Some of them probably thought the day would never come again.

But thanks to Michael Ramirez, white readers of NRO can stare with childish wonder at the shapes of men dangling from a limb and feel glee instead of having to fake guilt.

UPDATE: I can’t believe I forgot this! It’s only like my favorite scene in Maus:

Ha heh heh! Heh heh ha heh! Ha ha heh ha heh!

Comments (291)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. Warren Terra says:

    I thought conservatives valued tradition – since when has the National Review been against lynching?

  2. Major Kong says:

    Wow. Just wow. I got nothin’

  3. md rackham says:

    I remember when Michael Ramirez replaced Paul Conrad at the LA Times. Sigh. It used to be a great paper….

    But I’m still surprised he would stoop to such depths.

  4. B says:

    I hope you do know that people, including innocent Jews, died needlessly at some of those events in the cartoon right. No need to downplay the impact and loss of these tragedies to try and make your point, SEK.

    • SEK says:

      I agree. Let’s all make lynching jokes!

      Wait — I believe you just unwittingly undermined your own point and made mine for me.

    • Fire/Cross Enterprises says:

      The inclusion of, perhaps, a few, innocent Jews was a problem with lynching in the past (mainly versions 38 through 1955)
      but with the new release, you do not need to worry about that.
      Utilizing breakthroughs in sting’em theory, our advanced rope-tree algorithms assure only the guilty will be lynched.

  5. Sam says:

    I don’t think this is going to go over the way you think it will.

  6. Jordan says:

    *vomit*

  7. N__B says:

    Okay, obvious racism and assholery. Not surprising, however depressing it is.

    But…it doesn’t even make sense on its own terms. Trees do not lynch people. If he wanted to blame Sharpton for lynchings, why make him the tree?

    So, racism, assholery, and idiocy.

    • bspencer says:

      Reminds me of the anti-choicers with the tape over their mouths. Never did get that.

    • Michael H Schneider says:

      If he wanted to blame Sharpton for lynchings, why make him the tree?

      Uhm, it’s Sharpton that supports the violent repression of truth? Not agreeing, just trying to read the symbolism here.

      • N__B says:

        But the tree is a non-actor. The asshole’s point is to make Sharpton a lyncher, not an immobile mute…unless he’s saying someone else is using Sharpton as a tool?

    • Manju says:

      If he wanted to blame Sharpton for lynchings, why make him the tree?

      Easy, the lynch mob might take offense to being compared to Sharpton. So, tree it was.

    • FlipYrWhig says:

      All I can think is that he chickened out. Because it would be a much more comprehensible cartoon if Al Sharpton was represented by a caricature of Al Sharpton, glaring at the camera like in those horrible lynching postcards. But even Michael Ramirez couldn’t bring himself to take it all the way.

    • idlemind says:

      Sigh. Back when Ramirez first replaced Paul Conrad I was almost as offended at his tin ear for metaphor as I was at his political viewpoint. Doesn’t look like he’s improved any at the former, but I never imagined would be able to get that bad in the latter.

    • Jonas says:

      Didn’t you read/see Lord of the Rings, when those evil Ents attacked the supporters of that good man Sauron, who only wanted to uphold law and order and preserve the sanctity of life?

    • trollhattan says:

      Has Rev Al perhaps been interviewed by Barbara Walters recently? I must have missed it.

      “Reverend, if you were a tree, what kind of….”

      Still howl at the scene in “Bananas” where Woody Allen encounters National Review in the pr0n section. Giving pr0n a bad name, of course.

    • Pseudonym says:

      At a metaphorical level it would be better to have the corpses hanging from, say, Pinocchio-Sharpton’s nose. From everything I’ve seen Ramirez is just a cartoon troll.

  8. DrS says:

    What the…I don’t even.

    You think you’ve seen the depths plunged.

  9. joel hanes says:

    Vile

    • DrDick says:

      But unfortunately completely typical of modern conservatism (or old school conservatism for that matter).

  10. Malaclypse says:

    I used to be a liberal, but then I realized what sort of tree Al Sharpton would be if he could be a tree, and now I’m outraged that a man can be tried for killing a ni-clang, as though that made him some sort of criminal.

  11. Anonymous says:

    I’m offended he overlooked the worst lynching of recent times: when Clarence Thomas was asked some questions about some things he did on the job.

  12. bspencer says:

    It’s weird how put out conservatives are that a man they’ve adopted for their cause–and in so doing essentially made “white”–had to actually stand trial for KILLING a teenager. I guess the law does not apply to their kind.

    • Manju says:

      It’s weird how put out conservatives are that a man they’ve adopted for their cause–and in so doing essentially made “white”–had to actually stand trial for KILLING a teenager.

      This doesn’t really work. The RWing made a lot fuss about him not being white…as proof that the case was not about racism.

      Even the RWing troll here (not me, the other one) was making that argument…with commentators pushing back that he was a White Hispanic.

      • bspencer says:

        The key here is “made a fuss,” and I would argue the fuss was disingenuous. For all intents and purposes Zimmerman was most definitely white to the wingnuts.

        • aimai says:

          Zimmerman was performing a white function, or a function for white society, so in that sense he didn’t need to have any color at all–as though he were in a uniform like a police officer’s uniform. They see him, and saw him, as standing in for injured authority and for injured everyman. The fact that he was also darker skinned/part hispanic just made their support for him seem more innocent. Even a dog is obeyed in office.

          • lodown says:

            Exactly. The racial angle in this case was not about whether Zimmerman personally identifies as white or non-white or whether white people identify him as white. It’s about anti-black racism. Zimmerman’s whiteness mattered less in terms of the outcome of the trial than Trayvon Martin’s blackness.

            Zimmerman is not black and Zimmerman killed someone who is. Certain ethnic minorities are able to tap into white privilege under certain circumstances…like lynching African Americans.

            Zimmerman was treated like a white man by the justice system and a certain portion of the U.S. public. As a number of people have pointed out since the verdict, he received a fair trial, a vigorous defense, and a lot of public support. None of that would have happened if Zimmerman had murdered a young white boy.

            • Whitey McWhitey says:

              Zimmerman was treated like a white man by the justice system and a certain portion of the U.S. public.

              Yes, and O.J. was also treated “like a white man”…because he was so white.

              Certain ethnic minorities are able to tap into white privilege under certain circumstances…

              Eric Holder
              Barack Obama
              Jesse Jackson
              Sotomayor
              Van Jones

              Oh…and Zimmerman, because he was so rich and powerful.

              • Anonymous says:

                Explain to me again how OJ fulfilled a white function by vigilante-killing a dangerous hoodie-clad black teenager.

                • aimai says:

                  OJ was at first treated with kid gloves because of his star masculine function as a celebrity and a sports figure. Anthropologists often talk about people who are “honorary” males or “honorary whites.” Lots of societies have ways of conferring on some people this honorary status–South Africa declared the Japanese to be honorary whites for the purposes of trade, diplomatic, and social interaction when they needed Japanese support.

                  Happens all the time. In lots of venues. Legal cases are a bad place to look for it happening because Legal cases are weird, but you can see it happening in the Zimmerman case not as a matter of law but as a matter of cultural construction outside the legal sphere. Why else does Zimmerman–half jew and half hispanic–come to be seen as an everyman, sad sack, hapless, victim figure when he went out armed in a peaceful suburban neighborhood. Elsewhere, other times, other situations he’d be labled for what he was–a paranoid asshole with overwhelming masculine and racist insecurities which he was attempting to assuage by carrying a gun and which he did assuage by shooting an unarmed teenager. I’m white and he doesn’t represent me or my family. His cowardice alone, as well as his busybody interference with Martin, makes him not representative of me. If other white people take him on as representative of a model US citizen, of any race, that’s on them.

                • Anonymous says:

                  “…fulfilled a white function”

                  Exactly what is a ‘white function’?

                  Does Eric Holder fulfill a white function. Do you have to be poor to be a ‘real black’ person? Is every race that is not poor ‘white’?

                  If O.J.’s victims had on hoodies, would that have made the big difference in your mind?

                  It appears that even O.J., from the post above, is a white guy.

                • bspencer says:

                  You’re not understanding. Zimmerman played thr role of a white person by being the aggrieved vigilante who saved us from the black menace.

                • aimai says:

                  This is for anonymous.

                  You don’t seem like a person who has read a lot about authoritarianism and the state so this might go right over your head. Zimmerman arrogated to himself (and is seen by some segments of society as legitimately performing this function) a police function. His neighborhood watch “job” entitled him, as he saw it, to stop and question persons that he deemed suspicious. In reality an actual police officer might have had to be more careful about stalking and stopping a civilian, might have needed probable cause, and would certainly have had to stand some inquiry for wrongfully discharging his gun at an unarmed teen. Trayvon would have had some duty to stop and respond to the lawful commands of a police officer. Zimmerman’s “neighborhood watch” shtick apparently convinced Zimmerman that he had a quasi official right to stalk and talk to Trayvon, to demand he stop or account for himself.

                  In the US this police function has traditionally been a white job, and especially in the former slave states but elsewhere too has traditionally been a repressive one in service of the upper classes which, in this country, have traditionally been white. In other countries and in other times you might want to argue that the police function is primarily a function that protects corporations and property owners from white and non white lower class persons. The police function can be carried out on behalf of the upper classes and property owners by non whites, even by slaves (in some places), by hired workers, and by people who are ethnically identical to the ownership class/oligarchs. Under Jim Crow the state employed the police and some sub state actors to maintain the color line.

                  So Zimmerman, in arrogating to himself the right to police the neighborhood (Trayvon’s own neighborhood) was performing a police/state function. His choosing to focus on black youths made the function a white function. If he had evenly distributed his attentions across the race spectrum and been stopping or calling in suspicious white people or hispanics we wouldn’t make this argument. His phone records and past behavior show that he was fixated on controlling the behavior of black youths, not white youths.

                • sam says:

                  Zimmerman played thr role of a white person by being the aggrieved vigilante who saved us from the black menace.

                  A bald-faced lie.

                  FBI says you’re full of crap. You have no evidence of racism whatsoever.

                  You’re simply making shit up because you It’s problematic when any answer you believe possible is racial. You want to believe it so badly.

                  There is little difference between what you do and what the STORMFRONT people do.

                • zombie rotten mcdonald says:

                  A bald-faced lie.

                  You need to review the definition of “lie”.

                • Anonymous says:

                  Zimmerman played thr role of a white person by being the aggrieved vigilante who saved us from the black menace.

                  Let’s apply the template test.Change Zimmerman from a Hispanic dude to a black dude. Is he now white because “he fulfilled a white function”?

                  Really??

                  It doesn’t pass. It’s a pantsload.

          • bspencer says:

            That’s pretty much exactly what I was trying to say…you just said what I wanted to say more eloquently. Now, you stop doing that, aimai!

      • Sam says:

        Yeah, Zimmerman is white, all right. Just look at any picture of him. He screams Whitey McWhitey!

        • Malaclypse says:

          Yes, Jennie dearest.

          • Homer Secturl says:

            …Jennie dearest.

            Pretty gay

            • Malaclypse says:

              I still won’t fuck you, Jennie, no matter how many nyms you use to telegraph interest.

              • Homer Secturl says:

                If I were gay, I could to a whole lot better.

                But I’m not.

                Can you say the same?

                • Just a Rube says:

                  You know, most people moved beyond “I know you are, but what am I?” a long time ago.

                  Then again, they also moved beyond “gay” as an insult, so…

                • Sam says:

                  Anyone man who calls another man “dearest” in a public discussion is just begging for, and is fully deserving of, ridicule and stigma.

                  He’s a cartoon…and an entertaining one, too!

                • MAJeff says:

                  You have got some weird gender issues.

                • Homer Secturl says:

                  You have got some weird gender issues.

                  Now, *that’s* funny!

                • zombie rotten mcdonald says:

                  Interesting.

                  How does Malaclypse’s putative sexual orientation make your arguments any less nonsensical?

                  And why do you think the possibility of Mal being gay is a problem?

                  Issues, MAJeff? This dude has a whole subscription.

                • Homer Secturl says:

                  Hey, I was discussing Zimmerman.

                  He started the gay stuff. He’s stalking me. It’s cuz I’m a handsome black man and he has jungle fevahhhh….with a twist

                • Malaclypse says:

                  Cracker, please.

                • zombie rotten mcdonald says:

                  Anyone man who calls another man “dearest” in a public discussion is just begging for, and is fully deserving of, ridicule and stigma.

                  Why, honey?

                • MAJeff says:

                  Guuuuuuuurl!

      • aimai says:

        The Pushtun have an expression for it:

        “Me and my brother against my cousins, me and my cousins against the village, me and my village against the tribe, me and my tribe against the rest of the world.”

        We have a reverse way of saying it “The Enemy of my Enemy is my Friend.” Also, of course, Politics makes Strange Bedfellows.

  13. Anonymous37 says:

    Well, SEK, you’re going to love this one.

    • jim, some guy in iowa says:

      oh, that’s cute, too. this guy reminds me of the all purpose New Yorker cartoon caption: “Christ, what an asshole”

    • Jeremy says:

      The mind boggles at how such a thing could have been created. So many people in this world seem to have gotten the idea that since they’ve got every other privilege our society offers, they naturally get to claim the mantle of the dispossessed as well, without any of the actual messiness of ever having been a victim of anything.

      • Anonymous says:

        I was in face to face conversation with a couple of libertarian guys last week. People I thought fairly normal, if mal-informed (sic), misguided and lacking in empathy. Suddenly it’s all about “stringing Obama up in front of the White House”. I say, That’s really offensive. I am told it’s not racist because “power mad” ??? Harry Reid should be next to him. I say that no one said “string up” about a president until we had a black one, and in any case the offense was against American ideals. Call themselves patriots, ffs.

        There was much more, and it was really appalling the way they said these things as though it were perfectly acceptable. Just wow. Anyway I said I wasn’t down to hear this kind of shit ever. They were so surprised when I said I had to leave immediately. Do they not know anyone who would reject this shit?

        • aimai says:

          Why are you surprised? The basic libertarian perspective is that society, history, culture starts and ends with their birth and death, that only what they know and experience has meaning or value. So, naturally, all that stuff like symbols, communication, cultural freight, history not only don’t mean anything to them–asking for that stuff to mean anything to them is kind of an insult. Talking about lynching the first black president isn’t racist (to them) because they don’t know where they got the image of a black man being lynched, and they don’t care what the implications are for other people.

          • Robbert says:

            Also, their apparent believe that if it’s not racist, it’s not an offensive thing to say. “See, we say string up Harry Reid too! So it’s totally cool!”

            Apalling doesn’t begin to describe it.

        • firefall says:

          Yeah, working in IT, I’m very careful not to discuss anything serious with -any- of my colleagues, in this country.

        • TOP123 says:

          Their adding Harry Reid as a defense for that statement makes about as much sense as saying that James Chaney’s murder had nothing to do with race, because the killers also murdered Andrew Goodman and Michael Schwerner.

    • Kathleen says:

      Ramirez won 2 Pulitzer prizes? Also, too, re: link – WTF????

    • Barry Freed says:

      WTF is that even trying to say?

      • Barry Freed says:

        OK, I get it but for Crom’s sake, why the hell use Rosa Parks. WTF is wrong with these people? I’m reminded of Malcolm X’s line that racism is a form of insanity.

  14. wjts says:

    Conservative “humor” bears strange fruit.

    • bspencer says:

      Quit lynching the truth with your tree of humorlessness.

      • Davis X. Machina says:

        Humor — most of it anyways — is based on incongruity.

        If you’re a conservative, how can you even find incongruity? The world as it is is already divinely ordered in the best possible way, a tiny fraction booted, spurred and ready to ride and the rest saddled and ready to be ridden.

        Any change or deviation would represent a lapse away from perfection….

        And how could you celebrate that?

        I suppose a certain quasi-humor could be generated by the booted loudly and obscenely reminding the saddled that they’re saddled…. but that’s just insulting people.

    • N__B says:

      Conservative humor is to humor as conservative economics is to economics: it doesn’t add up.

  15. Sargon says:

    SEK, they totally do have heads. All the lynched bodies are drawn from the back (because apparently they all have “TRUTH” written on the backs of their shirts), and their heads are slumped forward, so they’re mostly hidden by their torsos, but they’re totally there.

    Anyway, wow, what the fuck, man. I don’t even. Al Sharpton? A tree? This cartoon doesn’t even make sense; it’s just a weird pile of vaguely black-people-related things labeling a bunch of lynched people with the same “TRUTH” jacket.

    • SEK says:

      SEK, they totally do have heads. All the lynched bodies are drawn from the back (because apparently they all have “TRUTH” written on the backs of their shirts), and their heads are slumped forward, so they’re mostly hidden by their torsos, but they’re totally there.

      I’d grant that if it were a photograph, but I think even Ramirez realized that he couldn’t have black heads hanging from the Sharpton tree, so he had them twist and swing in concert in order to avoid that incongruous situation arising. As for all the other such situations? He didn’t seem to give a shit.

      • SV says:

        I didn’t see the heads at first, but now that I look, I’m certain that they’re there, looking like uneven shoulders, and lumpy in a particularly headlike way… although drawn in such a way as to minimise the headiness as much as possible, which I guess is your real point, SEK. The heads make their bodies seem more… human? Relatable? Deserving of basic human respect or decency? One of those, I suppose. Of course they would need to be minimised as much as possible. *dies a bit inside in shame for my species*

  16. Another Anonymous says:

    Leaving aside the disgusting NRO cartoon … why is that your favorite scene in Maus? Is it a subtle visual-rhetoric thing, or what?

    • SEK says:

      It’s actually one of my least favorite, especially because of the flatness of Vladimir’s affect as he retells it. I was just saying that for terrible effect. If I had to pick a favorite scene — Maus is already boxed up, so I’m doing this from memory — well, the one that catches me is Art’s direct address to the reader from the second book, his easel atop the dead bodies and swarmed by flies. But that’s a meta-answer, so I’ll just say that the scenes I most enjoyed reading were the scenes of writing, just Art and his father, their give-and-take. The rhythms just sound so familiar and perfect to me, as do circumstances like returning an open, half-eaten box of cereal and demanding a full refund.

  17. efgoldman says:

    This is of a piece with the “Obama impressionist” that appeared at CPAC a few years ago.
    I really don’t know which is worse: the ugly directness of this bullshit, or the oh-so-refined, grammatically correct sneering from the WFBuckley days. At least now its out in the open. Its Mississippi on 1964 all over again, but with intartoobz.

    • YankeeFrank says:

      No, I think they are actually less honest today. Buckley actually defended black disenfranchisement directly: he claimed that since black culture was inferior it was just for blacks to be ruled by the more intelligent and sophisticated while culture.

      These guys feel the same thing but won’t say it directly. They use all the tropes and then deny they are using them. When they state their racist point of view, its generally in a cowardly fashion, denying all the time with concern trolling and other transparent (to anyone but them) tactics.

      The latest tactic seems to be that whenever someone outside their idiotic tribe mentions that something they’ve said is racist, they pull a Colbert and claim they “weren’t talking about race, jeez, why do you always see everything in terms of race, you racist?” Of course Colbert is mocking them with his “I don’t see race” canard. Its funny that they don’t get that. Racist conservatives are not the brightest bunch. They find a tactic they think is clever and they use it over and over again, thinking each time they are oh so clever. But no one who is either somewhat intelligent and not a racist conservative sees exactly what stupid sophistry they are exhibiting and either takes the time to mock them, or just walks away in disgust.

  18. Jeremy says:

    There needs to be some sort of Bingo game for dumb arguments people always make in excusing racism. Obviously, “liberals are the real racists” would be a square, as would “why is there no Congressional White Caucus?” But the center square would have to be “Al Sharpton’s existence excuses everything ever,” although it might just be easier to call it a free square. I notice also that NRO has a slideshow of Al Sharpton fancy suits on the homepage as well, although the link seems to be mercifully not working for me. These people are obsessed with that guy.

    • efgoldman says:

      Obviously, “liberals are the real racists” would be a square, as would “why is there no Congressional White Caucus?”

      You forgot “you know what would happen if we had a ‘Miss White America’ Pageant?”

      • aimai says:

        Why is there a black history MONTH? Bingo!

        • efgoldman says:

          My alcoholic, racist, gun totin’ brother in law brings up those very things with some regularity. There’s a reason he wasn’t allowed in my house for twenty years.

          • DrS says:

            This cartoon makes me very glad I told a few family members, after several squabbles, to just not send me any “humorous” email forwards and other such.

            Not sure I could handle having this show up in my inbox from a family member. Sadly feel there’s more than one that might think to do so.

          • Lee Rudolph says:

            I’d think that “alcoholic” plus “gun totin’” would be quite sufficient reason to disallow him houseroom still, though I suppose his personal alcoholic style might (seem to) mitigate the otherwise clear and present danger. But, hey, it’s your house and all; I’m just expressing general alarm.

    • MAJeff says:

      Add a square for, “Why can’t we use that word?!?!?!”

    • Origami Isopod says:

      If you google “Racist Bingo” or “Racism Bingo” you’ll find a good number of cards.

  19. efgoldman says:

    Also too, I wonder what the editorial staff at the LA Times and the syndicate think of their cartoonist’s sideline. His stuff has been appearing from time to time in the Boston Globe. I think they still have some standards.

  20. UserGoogol says:

    I’d say the point is probably more that liberals are the real racists, although the “oddness” of the comic goes to such an extent that people would probably want to take your sarcastic approach and downplay the connection between lynching and racism. (White people were lynched too, you racist!!!1111)

    • FlipYrWhig says:

      Something like that is the point, I suppose, but the what-stands-for-what relations are all a mess. It’s kind of like that Seinfeld where Kramer is protesting the US Postal Service with a mannequin in a postal uniform and a bucket on the dummy’s head, because, he explains, “we’re blind to their tyranny.”

  21. Erik Loomis says:

    Knowing how much I know about the history of race and racism in this country, it’s really hard to shock and offend me.

    I am shocked and offended.

    • ChrisTS says:

      Thanks for that, Erik.

      I cannot find anything to say – horrified or funny or whatever – in the face of this putrid travesty.

    • anthrofred says:

      In tangentially related daily news, I have to comfort myself knowing that whites can still be convicted of killing black teens in cold blood.

      The circumstances surrounding the case are a bit different from those in the Zimmerman trial, despite attempts at comparison. But there was still a chance an insanity plea would work or that there would be a reckless rather than intentional homicide conviction, so there’s some vindication. It hardly counts as “happy” news, but with the NRO still blazing ahead in their attempts to make black men the “real killers”, it’s something.

      • anthrofred says:

        Wrong link. The insanity plea was rejected.

        Had thought I was starting a different post rather than derailing Loomis’; sorry. I was absolutely dumbfounded by the cartoon too – and I have very, very low expectations of the NRO – so I thought I’d post something with a glimmer of hope in the midst of the post-Zimmerman-trial racist mess.

      • aimai says:

        The main differences? There was video, witnesses, and the murderer testified on the stand and the jury could see for themselves he was an asshole rageaholic.

        • zombie rotten mcdonald says:

          I knew where that link was going, before I even clicked. Happened a few blocks from my house.

          I think the clincher was when he said on the stand “I missed my guns. I REALLY wanted my guns back” (for those who haven’t read, he blamed the kid for stealing his guns)

        • anthrofred says:

          Yeah, Spooner’s testimony pretty much ruined his chances of being convicted on a lesser charge. We have a pretty fucked up racial history in Milwaukee, though, so if he hadn’t hoisted himself so high on his own petard, I don’t think it would have been unthinkable.

          • zombie rotten mcdonald says:

            I haven’t seen what the jury looked like. I presume it was 12, rather than 6; and I would guess there were at least a couple of African-Americans on it.

  22. Bitter Scribe says:

    The day this guy won the Pulitzer Prize was the day I stopped taking the Pulitzer Prize seriously.

  23. Jamie says:

    So… Trayvon Martin is dead… and George Zimmerman was found innocent and got to walk free, still alive… but Al Sharpton is the real murder… in the lynching of… the supposed truth that Zimmerman… killed Martin in self-defense?

    Even though Zimmerman’s version of the truth prevailed in the court room… and he got to walk out — again, let’s review — free, and alive… and Trayvon Martin is dead.

    But Al Sharpton is the real murderer here! The murderer of… the truth?

    Wow.

    • Jamie says:

      *the real murderer

    • bill says:

      Sharpton’s sin was making the NRO give a shit about Trayvon Martin for two months longer than the two seconds they would have in the first place.

    • g says:

      Well, yeah, that’s a pretty weird point, because one would think that the result of the acquittal would be to affirm Zimmerman’s story – at least officially and legally and on the record. A cartoon that decries the death of truth would be more appropriate coming from the people who wanted Zimmerman convicted.

      So Ramirez is saying that the fact that Zimmerman was prosecuted, defended himself, and prevailed was an example of the lynching of “truth”?

      It’s like Ramirez wants to have his cake and eat it too – this piece of excrement was probably on the drawing table before the verdict, he prepared it to use if Zimmerman had been convicted. Maybe he fell in love with his own nasty creation – he thought it was just too good not to use. Shudder.

      In what world is

    • Cody says:

      Yes. Visit reddit about this if you wish.

      I can’t count how many times I’ve been told that if Martin wasn’t black, Zimmerman wouldn’t have gone to court for killing someone.

      If we all accept Zimmerman did it in self-defense, how is it crazy to INVESTIGATE and PROSECUTE it to do justice? But now simply questioning the murderer of a black person is an affront to the Truth.

  24. Jewish Steel says:

    Tawana Brawley Hoax? Crown Heights? Freddie’s Fashion Mart?

    I know I could just Google these things, but should I?

    • aimai says:

      All clear examples of black people lying to get white people in trouble. As Trayvon did by being killed.

      • Jewish Steel says:

        If I didn’t actually know people who thought like this, I’d think you were all a bunch of paranoid nuts making stuff up.

      • nixnutz says:

        The thing is–and this is basically impossible to say without sounding like a concern troll–the first case seemingly was just that, except for real unlike with Zimmerman, and the other two were tragedies that had really ugly racial overtones (and seriously, “Jewish Steel” never heard of the Crown Heights riots? Blacks and Hasidim fighting in the streets? I thought that would be remembered).

        I don’t think Sharpton did anything wrong re Brawley; even if she was lying there’s nothing wrong with giving her the benefit of the doubt and advocating for her. In the Freddie’s Fashion Mart case he actually did say some unfortunate shit and then a protester went nuts and killed 7 people. Basically Sharpton has been around when Black people have acted in a problematic way and it makes it easy for people to concern troll and rebut anything he speaks on now without engaging it.

        This though is almost beyond belief, you have to know that only hard-core racists are going to dig it and I can’t see how anyone in this day and age wouldn’t at least pretend that wasn’t what they were doing.

        • Jesse Levine says:

          Sharpton doesn’t get off easy on the Tawana Brawley hoax. He was pressing the false accusations long after they were demonstrably shown to be false. Crown Heights was a tinder box with or without him. None of that excuses NR which has been racist since the day it was founded. There were no “good principled conservative arguments” under Saint Buckley. He was as racist as any of the worst southerners, although in a more elegant way.

        • N__B says:

          The problem with Sharpton’s actions in the Brawley case is that his speeches went beyond advocating for her to include personal attacks on the ADA who was not pursuing it full speed because her story was unravelling. Not a lynching by any standard, but not right either.

          • aimai says:

            Sharpton is, or was, a really skeezy guy and his actions in the T. Brawley case were extremely problematic, to say the least. But so what? Does the existence of one failed, asshole, political agitator mean anything about the cause to which he next attaches himself? Sharpton isn’t the only AA political activist in this country, and the fact that they have to go back to T. Brawley just shows their ignorance of how many injustices occur, every year, that go unnoticed and unvoiced. Sharpton only turns up occasionally to fight the good fight and thats precisely why they’ve fixated on him as a kind of bellwether for the evil “race hustler” meme.

            Still, he gave a knock down speech at Kerry’s convention.

            • MAJeff says:

              Still, he gave a knock down speech at Kerry’s convention.

              That he did! The “our votes are not for sale” section had me on my feet in my apartment.

            • N__B says:

              Does the existence of one failed, asshole, political agitator mean anything about the cause to which he next attaches himself?

              No. I was simply addressing “I don’t think Sharpton did anything wrong re Brawley; even if she was lying there’s nothing wrong with giving her the benefit of the doubt and advocating for her” in the comment upstream. I don’t see Sharpton as representative of the civil rights movement or, frankly, of anything other than himself. He is sometimes right, sometimes wrong, and always deliberately provocative. None of that is unique* or worthy of much comment.

              *This would probably hurt him more than anything else I’ve said if he were to read it.

              • nixnutz says:

                I guess I don’t remember Brawley in very much detail and I overstated the case. But I agree with both of you and I think you’re in agreement with each other. I take Aimai’s last comment to be critical of the right’s continuing strategy of using Sharpton’s presence to dismiss every issue that affects the Black community.

                He’s problematic because he’s a self-promoter who has a history of saying inflammatory things before gathering sufficient evidence. And since he tends to get himself involved in every single issue it’s an easy, perennial, strategy for them.

                To put it nicely, his most effective role, particularly back in the day, was not as the public face of the struggle, and he didn’t necessarily see that. But that is also where he’s made a lot of progress and it’s worth pointing out that all the “victims” in this vile cartoon are from 18 or more years ago.

                • aimai says:

                  The Brawley case is very important to a certain kind of right wing mythologizing about how white men (men) and white police officers (as police officers) are accused of obviously false things. So even believing Brawley for the first hours, or months, is adduced as proof of anti male and anti white and anti police bias. Because, so the story goes, “obviously” no one would do those things to a black woman. The “obvious” part goes unchallenged because in this instance it didn’t happen this way but the “obviously false” itself springs out of generic white refusal to recognize that lots of subordinate people get raped, pissed on, attacked, carved up, humiliated, and dumped and always have.

                  Grotesque stuff happens to subordinate people all the time but white privilige, male privilige, class privilige prevents the kind of people who use Sharpton from having to have had to know about it or believe in its existence.

                  Atrocities are unbelievable and unbelieved (by the class of people who benefit from them) even though they are quite everyday from the perspective of the abused. When Kerry was involved with Winter Soldiers they knew that they would be accused of making stuff up and they went out of their way to make sure that the soldiers they had testifying as to atrocities against the vietnamese could prove they were soldiers, could prove they had been where they said they could be.

                  I’m not attacking Sharpton for believing Brawley and standing by her, I’m just pointing out that what makes sense to a subordinate population as a not atypical act of violence often strikes the majority/ruling class as absurd or patently false. And not just out of self interest or wilful blindness but out of horror and disgust and general ignorance of reality. This is as true for gender differences as it is for racial ones–lots of well meaning, egalitarian living, men have zero idea what gets done to women by other normal guys.

                • Jewish Steel says:

                  and it’s worth pointing out that all the “victims” in this vile cartoon are from 18 or more years ago.

                  That is quite interesting. Crown Heights did tickle a memory for me, in fact. But checking the dates (Aug ’91) was a particular time of personal upheaval for me, so that one got past me. Not to mention I was still in a political coma, inhabiting a twilit world of received wisdom bestowed by my Republican family, and not yet “awake” to things in the world.

                • Hogan says:

                  Valid points have been made about the bias inherent in the prevailing view on this board of the Zimmerman trial.

                  Could you vague that up a little for me?

              • Sam says:

                The Brawley case is very important to a certain kind of right wing mythologizing about how white men (men) and white police officers (as police officers) are accused of obviously false things.

                It’s problematic when all possibilities that you see are through the lens of race.

                The real reason why the Brawley case is important is the same reason the Duke Lacrosse team and now the Martin case is important and that is because when it looks like you can demonize the other side, facts just aren’t important anymore.

                It’s just too good to pass up. Gotta jump and screw waiting for the facts to come out.

                I think we can all agree that Brawley was a liar. Also, the stripper that accused the Duke team was revealed to be a liar. And even now the FBI investigation concluded that that there was no racism in the Martin case.

                Hey, but why let the facts get in the way now?

                • bspencer says:

                  Really? Could you provide a link?

                  It’s great if that’s true. Too bad about the only racism that mattered–Zimmerman’s.

                • Sam says:

                  Sure…thanks for caring about truth.

                  Herehere…and here.

                • aimai says:

                  I’m not getting your point, sam. There have been quite a few cases (supposedly) of false accusations of one kind or another–why are these first up on white supremacist and republican hate lists? Its not me intruding race where it isn’t, it is a largely white party looking for grievances where it can feel itself the injured party. Why do I never see the same right wing defense of the teens who were (wrongly) accused of the Central Park Jogger Rape?

                  Miscarriages of justice happen all the time–why do some (which resulted in no one being charged or the innocent being exonerated) become a cause celebre on the right and not others?

                • Prodigal says:

                  Thank you for admitting that the facts don’t matter to the people demonizing Trayvon Martin, Sam.

                • Sam says:

                  Miscarriages of justice happen all the time–why do some (which resulted in no one being charged or the innocent being exonerated) become a cause celebre on the right and not others?

                  This is a different issue, and we can have a conversation on that issue. However, you asked for a link about the FBI investigation and I provided it.

                  I *this* case, racism was not an issue, regardless of what the ongoing meme is in the liberal media.

                • aimai says:

                  This is in answer to Sam’s weird point about racism not being a factor in the Zimmerman case.

                  Look: the pieces you’ve linked to are not at all relevant and completely misunderstand what just happened, and the basis of the Zimmerman trial in the first place.

                  When an armed man shoots an unarmed teen there ought to be an inquest and a trial. Very few people get to shoot another unarmed person and don’t get charged with something. When the state of florida decided to try Zimmerman they didn’t do so because they had to prove Zimmerman was a racist to do the shooting–they did so because the public has a right to know why an unarmed child was killed by an armed man. Zimmerman’s motivations only entered into it because he choose to claim self defense and had therefore to claim that he was in fear for his life.

                  Martin’s claims, his experience of that night, were irrelevant. No one could prove what they were because Martin was dead–killed by his retroactive accuser.

                  Do I, and a lot of other people, think race was a factor? Yes, obviously, and you do too. You think race was a factor in “Forcing” the state of florida to charge Zimmerman, or overcharge him. Why are the rest of us not entitled to argue that race was a factor in Zimmerman’s pursuit of Martin and in the state’s refusal to notify his parents and charge zimmerman in the first place? Is your obsession with race (the race of holder, the race of the president, the race of the victim Martin) somehow not a racial viewpoint while ours is?

                  As for myself I think on the evidence its obvious race played a huge role in Martin’s murder, but I”m pretty sure that machismo and cowardice played nearly as big a role. Zimmerman’s limp dick and his inability to face getting punched out by a mere teen when he had his big gun to even the score/give him a little viagra, probably played nearly as big a role.

                • Sam says:

                  As for myself I think on the evidence its obvious race played a huge role in Martin’s murder…

                  Yes, because you were there on the jury and heard all of the evidence….except for the FBI.

                  I hope you’re good looking, cuz you’ll need something going for ya’.

                • Anonymous says:

                  “Do I, and a lot of other people, think race was a factor? Yes…”

                  When the available facts don’t support a stubborn predisposition to arrive at a predetermined conclusion, it’s called bias and prejudice… and it’s very, very ugly no matter which side you’re on.

                  It’s ugly and it’s everything you say you hate.

                • SEK says:

                  It’s times like this, when you follow one of your comments with another in a sad attempt to create the impression that multiple people believe as you do, that I almost start to feel sorry for you, desperate as you must be for something resembling a friend.

                  Then I remember the content of the comments you’re agreeing with yourself about and my sympathy evaporates like so much moisture on the surface of the sun.

                • Sam says:

                  Valid points have been made about the bias inherent in the prevailing view on this board of the Zimmerman trial.

                  And it’s really, really ugly. Just as ugly as David Duke’s bias. Just different sides.

                  If you got something besides the demonization and want to discuss this bias, then say so.

                  You’re supposed to be the academic.

                  How do you explain it?

                • aimai says:

                  I’m sad for all your split personalities, sam/anonymous/prodigal/jennie whoever you are. Because not only are you a pathetic, lonely, person but you have chosen to ally yourself with a murderer and with his sympathizers.

                • Sam says:

                  I have allied myself only with the facts…and I’ve pointed them out, but they seem to get in the way of your bigotry and bias.

            • g says:

              Yeah, Sharpton’s early career as a conflict-exploiting self-promoter was deplorable but that’s exactly the kind of thing the right wing admires when it’s coming from Sarah Palin, Ted Nugent, or Glen Beck.

        • Another Halocene Human says:

          Tawana Brawley wasn’t lying and it wasn’t a hoax, unless you think the police report and other witnesses to her condition after she was raped and brutalized were all in on the conspiracy.

          You’re on the internet–fucking google it.

          The whole “Tawana Brawley hoax narrative” is another one of those aggressive white supremacist pushbacks–why would rich whites guys rape a helpless black teenager (uh, because they’ve always done that)? Because “forcible rape” is always perpetrated by society’s outsiders on women they can’t get except by violence, right? So it must all be a lie. Just like Trayvon was a weed-smoking hood who set on Zimmerman from behind some bushes and beat him within an inch of his life, right? Right?

          The only difference between then and now is that the white supremacists remarkably have slightly less control over peoples’ minds and the media.

          I believed all that bullshit about Sharpton until I looked up the facts for myself.

          Btw, rich white guys don’t just commit suicide after being accused by the police of the rape of a minor unless they did it. Also, too, Charles Stuart, contra my 5th grade teacher, did not kill himself because of the pain of losing his wife and unborn son and not getting justice for their murders.

          He killed himself because because BPD had finally untangled itself from a Gordian knot of tribalist STUPID and was going to send that fuck to PRISON for the rest of his natural life.

          • Dave says:

            You mean, like here:

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tawana_Brawley_rape_allegations

            And the bit where there was no physical evidence of sexual activity, or that “despite her claim of having been held captive for days, Brawley was not suffering from exposure, was well-nourished, and appeared to have brushed her teeth recently. Despite her clothing being charred, there were no burns on her body. Although a shoe she was wearing was cut through, Brawley had no injuries to her foot. The racial epithets written on her were upside down, which led to suspicion that Brawley had written the words. Testimony from her schoolmates indicated she had attended a local party during the time of her supposed abduction. One witness claimed to have observed Brawley’s climbing into the garbage bag”.

            Unless you’re going to rely on the argument that she can’t have been lying BECAUSE STFU, you aren’t going to get very far believing her.

  25. aimai says:

    Look–are you saying that white people (or hispanic people!) can’t use images of lynching? That’s like telling white people they can’t say the N word! [shuts off dogwhistle, lies down and starts vomiting.]

    • DrS says:

      I still don’t get why they want to so badly.

      Sheesh, guys, you can seemingly say anything else. Not getting to say one word gets you so excited?

      And these same folks clutch their pearls if you “use foul language”

      Fucking fuckers.

      • zombie rotten mcdonald says:

        Because they know it’s hateful and hurtful, and they LIKE being hateful and hurtful.

        • g says:

          exactly. It’s not like they feel deprived of a vocabulary, they feel deprived of another tool to express hatred.

      • Anonymous says:

        Not getting to say one word gets you so excited?

        The word is not important.

        It’s just a small token of how you wish to divide by approving the use by one group, but prohibiting it among others.

        How can you ever hope to bring people together when you are constantly promoting different rules for each group?

        Identity politics destroys us all, but it keeps the status quo in power.

        • Malaclypse says:

          Go ahead and say it, Jennie dear. You know you want to.

        • (the other) Davis says:

          It’s just a small token of how you wish to divide by approving the use by one group, but prohibiting it among others.

          It’s only “prohibited” in the sense that someone in the outside group will get labeled an asshole for using it. And you’ve managed to achieve that end just fine without using the word, so I don’t see what’s holding you back.

        • Robbert says:

          Shorter you: “If us privileged white folk can’t use that one word while blah people can, it turns them into the haves and us into the have-nots, and that’s exactly the wrong way round.”

  26. Chris Mealy says:

    Christ, what an asshole.

  27. Informant says:

    Only a racist would notice that they’re headless necks from root to wick

    Was that supposed to read, “Only a racist would notice their headless necks from root to wick”? That doesn’t really make any sense either since the figures in the cartoon clearly have heads (and how can something be “headless . . . from root to wick” anyway?), but it would at least be grammatical.

    • Sam says:

      I think it’s wholly unfair to hold anyone with a doctorate in English from UCI accountable for this grammatical error.

    • SEK says:

      Was that supposed to read, “Only a racist would notice their headless necks from root to wick”?

      No, the original’s correct: “Only a racist would notice they are headless necks from root to wick.” It’s difficult to write about something that normally connects something to something that’s not there.

      • zombie rotten mcdonald says:

        given Jennie’s comment above, HA!

      • Warren Terra says:

        Not to mention, it’s rude to criticize someone’s grammar or spelling in the thoughts they toss off, unpaid, into the internets, unless the errors are so frequent or glaring as to greatly impede understanding. Even had this been an error, it would hardly qualify.

  28. MAJeff says:

    Ah, White America.

  29. c u n d gulag says:

    Ugh.
    I should have stayed in bed, where even my worst nightmares don’t have racist cartoons.

  30. KadeKo says:

    Please, please, NPR: Make this one of your contractually obligated “reasonable right-wing” editorial cartoons of the day.

  31. Shakezula says:

    to allow the overwhelmingly white readership of NRO to believe that the imagined lynching of an abstract value is morally equivalent to the actual lynching of actual human beings.

    I have to disagree with this analysis.

    This is another one of those “Hur hur hur, let’s piss off the libruls” moments that is perhaps only unique in its heavy handedness. So the civil rights activist becomes an agent in a lynching, the history of which we don’t need to discuss. Why is Sharpton the tree? Too hard to draw Sharpton on the ropes.

    Then we have the repetition of (I assume) incidents over which the RW has been fuming for a while (I’m only familiar with the Brawley incident) with the addition of the fact that Zimmerman had to face trial for killing someone.

    Har har, that’ll show those libs!!

    • Uncle Kvetch says:

      I’m only familiar with the Brawley incident

      I’d never heard of Freddie’s Fashion Mart, and I was living here in NYC at the time (albeit deep in the throes of my first year of grad school, so not exactly on top of local news). Talk about reaching.

      On the broader point, I think you’re right…”making sense” isn’t the objective here. The cartoon doesn’t merit (or withstand) a reasoned analysis any more than the comments left by our resident trolls.

    • sharculese says:

      Like many younger Americans, I mostly recognize these events through the episodes of Law & Order based on them. (although I’m not sure they did a Freddie’s Fashion Mart episode. know they did Brawley and Crown Heights.)

      • Shakezula says:

        I remember the Brawley incident in part because I was going to college in that part of the world at the time. I had to search the other two. Sounds like the The Truth is safe from the Sharpton tree outside of NYC & its burbs and Florida.

      • Anonymous says:

        Like many younger Americans, I mostly recognize these events through the episodes of Law & Order based on them.

        Oh, good LORD !!

        This explains a lot. It’s like trying to understand Shakespeare by reading Cliff Notes.

  32. Ted says:

    Maybe I’m just out of touch with things but does Al Sharpton actually matter to anyone these days? I mean, the Tawana Brawley incident was 25 years ago – is there anyone who doesn’t remember it happening at the time (i.e., anyone under about 40 years old) who even knows what it was about? It’s like he’s going out of his way to be racist here. At least if he’d made Obama the tree it would have some relevance to something.

    • Jeremy says:

      Well, he obviously matters a lot to right-wingers, for whom his mere existence negates all claims that racism against black people is a real thing in the world. Anytime they can change the conversation to a 25-year-old false rape charge, rather than the continued presence of racial disparities in the US, they take it. For NRO, every accusation of racism is Tawana Brawley all over again, and thus, just the fevered imaginings of “race hustlers.”

  33. Ted says:

    I suppose that last sentence would be clearer if I’d written “If he’d made Obama the tree it would at least have some relevance to something, although he’d need other lynching victims, like Benghazi or something.”

  34. Every Libertarian Ever says:

    You know what’s the real extrajudical terror? A jury trial resulting in an acquittal.

    • aimai says:

      Isn’t this called a Hoekstroika?

      Hoekstroika- A ridiculous statement that greatly minimizes the suffering of one group of people while wildly escalating the suffering of another group of people, when no such comparison exists. Usually for partisan political point scoring. Origin: a “twitter” from Rep. Peter Hoekstra comparing the violent repression of peaceful demonstrators in Iran with Republicans in congress:

      Iranian twitter activity similar to what we did in House last year when Republicans were shut down in the House. 8:56 AM Jun 17th from TwitterBerry

    • Every Libertarian Ever says:

      You know what’s the real extrajudicial terror punishment? A jury trial resulting in an acquital.

      Fixed for maximum contradiction.

  35. bekabot says:

    Reverend Sharpton, as a political figure, has always irritated me. He’s always irritated me because he’s so much the ward heeler writ large. But by now (though he still irritates me) I admire him, because by now I can see that he is something like a knotted oak.

    Props to these people for being able to make it look like that’s a bad thing.

  36. bspencer says:

    I have to tell you–as someone who doesn’t know a whole lot about Reverend Al– a lot of the skree he seems to evoke just comes across to me as a bunch of Ailinsky/Ayers-esque argle bargle. I don’t doubt that he’s behaved poorly in the past, but his heart certainly seems to be the right place now.

    • N__B says:

      I suspect his heart has always been in the right place. His tactics have evolved, possibly from being on the losing end of a suit brought by the Brawley ADA. Again, not saying he deserved the judgement against him, but unless he’s a moron – which I don’t think he is – he would have to have reconsidered his previous shoot-from-the-hip method of press engagement.

      • bspencer says:

        Oh, don’t misunderstand me– people I like and respect have had problems with the Sharpton of the past. All I’m saying is, I think New Al is an ok guy.

  37. Jessse Levine says:

    Spencer: if as you say you don’t know much about a subject, why comment? Sharpton’s self promotion caused real damage to the movement to curb police abuse of minority communities.

  38. Aaron Baker says:

    You must admit the logic here is impeccable: Sharpton is a shady character–therefore, Trayvon Martin must have attacked George Zimmerman. QED, motherfuckers!

  39. Jessse Levine says:

    I was talking about Sharpton’s impact on issues affecting New York at the time.

  40. Sam says:

    Bottom line is Mr. Ramirez made points…so much so that it has rattled Mr. Kaufman et al enough to try to make it into something it’s not.

    • sharculese says:

      I don’t think the dude who obsessively posts here under multiple names just to let everyone know how indignant he is should accuse other people of being ‘rattled’.

    • aimai says:

      “something its not?” We are just trying to figure out what Ramirez thinks it Is. Whatever his motivations or his intent, its a really bad cartoon.

      However, I think I have figured it out. I think its a garbled reference to “fruit of the poisoned tree” and to “strange fruit” at the same time.

    • witless chum says:

      Topping pancakes are the only thing racism denial is good for.

    • Cody says:

      I guess if the point is lynching black people is okay again, I do find it rattling.

      I imagine you have to be a particular kind of creep to just look up and say “+1 for Ramirez for lynching black people!”, but eh, there you are.

  41. [...] are back in vogue after 75 years or so Filed under: Uncategorized — Lex @ 6:29 pm SEK at Lawyers, Guns & Money: [Cartoonist] Michael Ramirez’s “Lynched” serves a single purpose: to allow the [...]

Leave a Reply




If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a Gravatar.

  • Switch to our mobile site