Two-time Pulitzer Prize winner and cartoonist Michael Ramirez had work published in the Washington Post on Tuesday. The drawing pokes fun at Hamas’s accusations that Israel is aiming rockets at youngsters in Gaza. Ghazi Hamadi, a spokesman for the terrorist organization, is shown using kids as shields. The Post took down the comic on Wednesday after receiving complaints from readers, employees, and executive editor Sally Buzbee.
Many readers and staff considered the caricature as “racist.”
During an interview with National Review (NR), Ramirez, who publishes cartoons in both the Washington Post and the Las Vegas Review-Journal, said he will not surrender to the baseless charges of racism.
According to Ramirez, the concept focuses on a single character and exposes a particular group’s claims that they are victims. He claimed that those who see the caricature as racist are unable to distinguish between Hamas and Palestinians and are thus misrepresenting the issues at hand.
He told NR that he thinks the racist allegations are a result of people not being able to realize the tactics Hamas employs, such as using children as human shields.
To justify their intellectual laziness, racist arguments are often used.
Racially stereotyped depictions of Hamadi’s face were at the heart of the criticism leveled at the animation. Ramirez told NR that he uses a style for all his subjects, regardless of race, and he showed additional drawings to prove his point.
Ramirez stated he often sends Shipley three illustrations every day. However, on Tuesday, he sent over eight or nine.
Ramirez remarked that the controversial cartoon was Shipley’s favorite and the artist’s favorite.
A call from David at the height of the controversy alerted Ramirez that they were taking a lot of heat for the comic. About an hour later, he called again to tell him they were canceling the cartoon.
Ramirez voiced concern that a demographic he called “juveniles” was having undue sway over journalistic content. He thinks this is an issue for WAPO, journalism, and the country at large.
He said you need to mature if a cartoon can trigger you.