Who knew religious cartoons would be the talk of the world?
Speaking as a cartoonist who draws cartoons with religious themes and with a bit of humor, I must say that I value the art of satire. (I didn’t say I have mastered it.) But there’s a difference between using sarcasm to make legitimate criticisms of something and then using it to just upset people. When you’re drawing cartoons that are intentional inflammatory (almost racist), then you’ve stopped making any points and just started doodling for the wrong reasons.
Now, Charlie Hebdo cartoonists have drawn some pretty crude images of Jesus. Some of them were so obscene that I don’t even want to describe them. Yet I certainly don’t think they should be killed because of them. Instead, I just don’t buy their paper. (These days, a pocket book protest can accomplish a lot.)
In short, while no one should ever be killed for a drawing, I urge my fellow cartoonists to please think twice about how you apply your craft. If you’ve got a legitimate point to make and you’d like to do it with some humor and flare, do it. But if you’re just drawing something with an aim only to consciously offend people who are already enraged, or if you’re doing it just to increase sales, maybe you shouldn’t. (Full disclosure: I make no money from this site.) And everyone reading this should be looking into what motivated those who committed these horrible murders to do what they did. Don’t just blame it on the cartoons.
But, nevertheless, freedom of speech should be extended to everyone, even those we disagree with.
Note: This is the 150th cartoon at NAA! Yeah!