Tonight I am canceling my MySpace account.
First, I messaged everyone in my address book, and told them why.
Rupert Murdoch only understands one thing. Eyeballs + Ears = Money.
When the New York Post Wednesday published an editorial cartoon by artist Sean Delonas picturing a chimpanzee being shot by police officers, with one officer stating "THEY'LL HAVE TO FIND SOMEONE ELSE TO WRITE THE NEXT STIMULUS BILL" it was the last straw. To me, the cartoon appeared to be a clear, racist message about assassinating the President of the United States. When one considers that there is a "Beware of Dogs" sign not-so-hidden in the cartoon, another not-so-subtle linkage with our country's racist past; the combination spoke a darker message.
Now, defenders of New York Post owner Rupert Murdoch are already saying that liberals like me are the ones being racist for viewing this cartoon and gleaning the message we have from it. They have called us hyper-sensitive; insisting that the cartoon refers to Congress, whom they say "wrote the bill." This is, of course, despite the fact that the cartoon was published one day after the first African American President of the United States signed the largest piece of stimulus legislation into law. You do the math. Hate speech, even if it is veiled in a cartoon, is still hate speech.
In Chicago we see images of police officers shooting African Americans, in the past publicly calling them "monkeys," and sicking police dogs on civil rights marchers; and it instantly reminds us of the painful, racist past we have worked so hard to erase. Considering that New York is very much as racially divided as Chicago is, it isn't hard to make a linkage that the "rich white guy who owns a major paper" in New York might have just allowed his paper to send a very clear, violent, and outwardly racist, yet First Amendment-protected message to the President.
Hopefully the U.S. Secret Service is going to take this cartoon for what it is, satire. I don't think they should hunt down cartoonist Delonas and try to nail him to the wall. Nor do I think Murdoch and his editors should be charged with threats to the President. A) Just try to prove it. B) It gives Murdoch and Delonas more publicity than racist pigs deserve. C) It is First Amendment protected speech, and we shouldn't want to abridge others' rights to say what they want. That's part of Democracy and we have to deal with the idiots as much as legitimate leaders and thinkers in an open society.
What I do hope for, though, is that every one of my readers, listeners, like minded friends, and associates emails every one of their MySpace friends with this column, adapted to their own beliefs; and then actually dumps their MySpace account. Furthermore, we should boycott all of NewsCorp's properties (a list is at NewsCorp.com) including Fox News, The NY Post, Fox Radio, Fox Chicago and its sister stations, and any advertiser that does business with the company. American Idol...sorry, you're going down. Jack Conaty, Lil Chacone, and Robin Robinson; as much as I love you...see ya. Simpsons, Family Guy, Jack Bauer...yep, I have to say "buhbye."
We have to send a message to Rupert Murdoch that he will understand. Money. Hit his big white Right Winger pocketbook right through his pants. Dump all of NewsCorp's properties and teach these extremist bigots a lesson in a way they'll remember.