Tags: Boston Herald | racist | cartoon | watermelon

Boston Herald Apologizes for Questionable Obama Cartoon

By    |   Wednesday, 01 Oct 2014 12:08 PM

The editors of the Boston Herald were forced to apologize on Wednesday after a political cartoon about the White House intruder prompted accusations of racism.

The cartoon, by Herald artist Jerry Holbert titled "White House Invader Got Farther Than Originally Thought," shows President Barack Obama brushing his teeth in the bathroom of the White House. He is startled by a man behind him who is sitting in a bathtub washing himself. "Have you ever tried the watermelon-flavored toothpaste?" the man asks the president.

"We sincerely regret if we inadvertently offended anyone," the Herald editors said, according to Talking Points Memo.

Mention of watermelon, critics say, evokes a racial stereotype by whites about blacks being obsessed with watermelons which dates back to the time of slavery and into the 20th century.

"This cartoon in today's Boston Herald is racist and offensive. The Herald should apologize," said CNBC contributor Keith Boykin, according to Boston Magazine.

Former Boston Herald staffer Greg Reibman said on Twitter that the cartoon was "unfortunate," later adding it was "outrageous."

Before the newspaper issued the apology, Herald editorial page editor Rachel Cohen initially defended the cartoon, telling blogger Jim Romenesko that neither she nor Holbert saw anything wrong with it.

"Jerry doesn't have a racist bone in his body," she said.

"He chose watermelon because he had just seen a tube of watermelon-flavored toothpaste in his house."

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The editors of the Boston Herald were forced to apologize on Wednesday after a political cartoon about the White House intruder prompted accusations of racism.
Boston Herald, racist, cartoon, watermelon
252
2014-08-01
Wednesday, 01 Oct 2014 12:08 PM
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