Letter: Cartoon conveyed truth

Letter: Cartoon conveyed truth

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There was a letter to the editor published May 16th that found offensive an editorial cartoon that satirized President Trump's handling of the pandemic. Let me explain why I disagree.

In the original photograph (1972) that the editorial cartoon is based upon, you have villagers and children running in pain and terror after having been bombed with napalm while soldiers look on in the background seemingly indifferent to the plight of the villagers.

What the editorial cartoon does is juxtapose the soldiers in the background with Trump in the foreground, seemingly indifferent to the plight of the victims congratulating himself on how well he has handled the pandemic. It is sarcastic, but only a tiny bit so. It is meant to show that Trump is a shameless self promoter. And it is meant to show that he was slow to recognize the suffering of those affected by the coronavirus pandemic.

Trump downplayed the severity of the coronavirus pandemic for at least six weeks, only formally acknowledging it was a problem in mid-March. It seems to me that he lost at least six weeks in mobilizing the efforts of the federal government to deal with the pandemic. It is a unflattering truth. It is an inconvenient truth. It is an ugly truth. But it's the truth the editorial cartoon is trying to convey.

Michael Ellis

Moline

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