The shootings in Texas once again demonstrate that art is provocative, but we must not cower in the face of threats to this profession or to free expression. Political art, be it cartoons, paintings, sculpture, or anything else, is protected speech under the First Amendment. The group that sponsored the “art contest” has been labeled a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center. The leader of the group seems to have her own tasteless and ignorant agenda. However, a group's political agenda, whether we agree with its goals or not, is subject to the same constitutional protections we all enjoy. Cartoons are powerful, as has been repeatedly shown in the past few months, and the AAEC condemns this senseless attack.Well, I don't know whether I'd go so far as to call the attack "senseless." It sort of made some degree of sense in that it didn't take any great amount of effort to figure out why they did it. Pamela Geller hired extensive and mostly heavily armed security because the attack was rather predictable, which senseless attacks generally aren't.
Squeaky Fromme shooting at President Gerald Ford was senseless. Mark David Chapman killing John Lennon was senseless. The ridiculously convoluted murder plot on CSI: Cyber this evening was utterly senseless.
That one word, however, is a minor quibble in an otherwise accurate response.