Thursday, January 18, 2018

Q Toon: Served Cold

Paul Berge
Q Syndicate
🜄Jan 16, 2018

James Franco wore a "Time's Up" pin to the Golden Globes awards, but since getting up on stage to accept a best actor award, he has been accused of "inappropriate or sexually exploitative behavior" by five women. Whether this damages his career, given his well-established bad-boy reputation, remains an open question; I haven't read anything about his film scenes being reshot with Christopher Plummer.

There followed the accusations by an anonymous photographer against Aziz Ansari, which blur the line between what constitutes sexual assault as opposed to just a bad date. Even some women have come to Ansari's defense, pointing out that "Grace" (the accuser's nom de punir) wasn't lured to Ansari's apartment under false pretenses; she didn't say "no" early on; and when she did, he stopped and apologized and they watched some TV.

But by and large, one male celebrity after another (and not just in Hollywood) is finding that while he may think of himself as Cary Grant in the boudoir, women these days find him to be The Continental and aren't afraid to tell the world about it.

Where we draw the line between The Continental and Inspector Clouseau has yet to be determined.

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Well Done, Sister Suffragette

On the home front, America's editorial cartoonists had much to draw about in January, 1918. The federal government nationalized the railroads. Because of a coal shortage, Congress ordered businesses to close shop every Monday for a month. Not coincidentally, knitting sweaters was promoted as the latest fad sweeping the nation, for men and women alike.

And then there was the plot by women to unman the federal government.

One day after announcing his Fourteen Point plan to end all wars, Wilson declared his support for a constitutional amendment to extend federal voting rights to women.

"Both Are Mine!" by Charles "Bill" Sykes in Philadelphia Evening Public Ledger, January 9, 1918
You might recall that during the 1916 presidential campaign, Wilson's support for women's suffrage was grudging and negligible, in contrast to Charles Evans Hughes's and most other Republicans' whole-hearted support. Wilson's January announcement persuaded just enough reluctant Democrats for the the amendment to pass the House on January 10 — with only one vote more than the required two-thirds majority.
"How Can He Refuse?" by C. F. Naughton in Duluth Evening Herald, January 12, 1918
From the House, the bill passed to the Senate...
"Another Dark Alley to Go Through" by Kenneth Chamberlain in Philadelphia Evening Telegraph, January, 1918
...where it languished until its defeat in September.

These cartoons (prematurely) celebrate the emancipation of the female electorate, but it's only fair to present the other side. Since I led off with that fear-mongering banner headline in the Special Night Edition of the El Paso Morning Times, I feel obligated to share that Associated Press story with you.
Washington, Jan. 7. — Hearings on the federal suffrage amendment resolution to be voted on in the House Wednesday were closed by the House Woman's Suffrage Committee today after listening to arguments by representatives of the National Association Opposed to Woman's Suffrage, and final appeals for favorable action by officials of the Nation Suffrage Association.
Former Senator Bailey of Texas contended that women are incapable of performing the three principal duties of citizenship, military service, sheriff service, and jury service, and should not help enact laws they are incapable of obeying. He insisted the suffragists constitute a small percentage of the women of the country, and added:
"There are too many ignorant voters now, and I would not add to the number."
"Shattering the Chains" by Harry Murphy in Chicago Examiner, January 11, 1918
Hentry A. Wise Wood, New York, formerly an advocate of woman suffrage, said women would insist on holding government offices, invading Congress, the Supreme Court and the White House and would succeed in womanizing the government and blocking the country's military program.
"The Feminine Way" by Nelson Harding in Brooklyn Eagle, January 11, 1918
Mrs. James A. Wadsworth Jr., president of the National Association Opposed to Women Suffrage, and other speakers denounced methods used by the suffragists in their efforts to put the resolution through Congress, particularly by public demonstrations of the militants and threats of political defeat to opposing legislators. The Suffragists, Mrs. Edwin Ford of Boston said, are "well organized, over-financed, and already have a split in their ranks."
"Father Gives His Blessing" by John "Ding" Darling, by January 18, 1918
Mrs. Carrie Chapman Catt and Mrs. Maud Wood Park, officers of the National American Women Suffrage association briefly replied, saying they were before the committee to present "facts, not theory."
The national association made public today a number of telegrams and letters advocating the passage of the resolution, including one from Theodore Roosevelt.
Because of a crowded court calendar, argument of the appealed cases of the women convicted of picketing the White House was postponed until tomorrow. --30--
"Hands Across the Seas" by John McCutcheon in Chicago Tribune, January 11, 1918
(Me again.) Across the Atlantic on the same day as the House vote, the House of Lords, considering what would become The Representation of the People Act of 1918, rejected an amendment by Earl Loreborn which would have denied British women the vote. Speaking in favor of the amendment, Lord George Curzon alleged that wherever women had the right to vote, it promoted socialism.

Even without Earl Loreborn's amendment, the Act would not give British women equal voting rights with men, however. Whereas any man could vote after his 21st birthday (or his 19th if he had served in the military), a woman had to wait until the age of 30, and moreover had to be either a member a member of the Local Government Register, a property owner, a British university graduate, or the wife of any of the above.

Friday, January 12, 2018

Satire Cannot

The President of the United States has hit the fan, and gosh, it's the talk of the town.

Is it even possible to satirize this outrageous, small-minded bigot any more?
Our best minds keep trying, but it's almost impossible to keep up while still respecting the delicate sensibilities of American newspaper editors.

Ed Hall
Artizans Syndicate
Jan 12, 2018

You can get away with some of this stuff in, say, Brazil.
"Buraco de Merda" by Rice Araujo on Cartoon Movement
Personally, I'm hoping that there's some other topic I can tackle by the time I have to commit pen to paper.

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Q Toon: Heaven and Michele

Paul Berge
Q Syndicate
👼Jan 11, 2018
Former Minnesota Representative Michele Bachmann announced on the Christian Broadcasting Network that she might consider running for the Senate seat vacated by Democrat Al Franken, but she hadn't heard from God on the matter quite yet. Editorial cartoonists are now waiting with baited breath in hopes that God gives the go-ahead to the woman who believes that the HPV vaccine causes mental retardation, that Iraq and Libya should have reimbursed the U.S. for overthrowing their leaders, that Barack Obama was allowing Islamic extremists to impose Sharia law in the U.S. by 2015, and that
"Because our K-12 public school system, of which ninety per cent of all youth are in the public school system, they will be required to learn that homosexuality is normal, equal and perhaps you should try it. And that will occur immediately, that all schools will begin teaching homosexuality."
But wait, there's more.
"What a bizarre time we’re in, Jan, when a judge will say to little children that you can’t say the pledge of allegiance, but you must learn that homosexuality is normal and you should try it.”
“You have a teacher talking about his gayness. [The elementary school student] goes home then and says 'Mom! What’s gayness? We had a teacher talking about this today.' The mother says 'Well, that’s when a man likes other men, and they don’t like girls.' The boy’s eight. He’s thinking, 'Hmm. I don’t like girls. I like boys. Maybe I’m gay.' And you think, 'Oh, that’s, that’s way out there. The kid isn’t gonna think that.' Are you kidding? That happens all the time. You don’t think that this is intentional, the message that’s being given to these kids? That’s child abuse.”
"I am not here bashing people who are homosexuals, who are lesbians, who are bisexual, who are transgender. We need to have profound compassion for people who are dealing with the very real issue of sexual dysfunction in their life and sexual identity disorders."
"So now we find out these people are making decisions based on our politics and beliefs, and they're going to be in charge of our health care. There's a huge national database that's being created right now. Your health care, my health care, all the Fox viewers' health care, their personal, intimate, most close to the vest secrets will be in that database, and the IRS is in charge of that database? So the IRS will have the ability potentially — will they? — to deny health care, to deny access, to delay health care? This is serious! Based upon our political beliefs? That's why we have to repeal Obamacare."
Of course, the last time political wags thought the very idea of a dimwitted, factually-challenged narcissist running for political office ought to be good for a laugh, we ended up with President Trump.

Conventional wisdom, which tends to emanate from NYC, DC and LA, not Lake Wobegon, is that Minnesota is a Blue State; but it's worth remembering that Al Franken was only elected Senator in 2008 by the slimmest of margins. Republicans can and do win statewide races there; Minnesota Democrats have won only five senatorial elections and two gubernatorial races over the last 20 years.

Both of Minnesota's Senate seats will be up for grabs this year. The last time that happened, in 1978, Republicans won both races.

If that should happen again, heaven help us.