July 14th, 2008
06:06 PM ET

New Yorker cover - Satire or smear?

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/07/14/art.tiltedobama.jpg width=292 height=320]
Gina McCauley
Blogger and founder
Oh yes folks, Liberal creatives are having a field day this election season with their depictions of Michelle Obama. Proving that you can revel in racist depictions of Black people as long as you have a really good reason.


We previously showed you a "satirical" piece where Michelle was depicted being lynched by the Klan( Michelle Obama Depicted Being Tortured: Liberal Bloggers Lose Their Ever Loving Minds)

Now they are back at it depicting her as a terrorist rocking an afro and a machine gun. Barack Obama offered his standard response: None at all. (the campaign later issued a statement after his initial non committal response)I am beginning to see the wisdom of his silence, this is going to go on and on and on for the next five months he might as well save up for October:

Keep reading

Editor's Note: Gina McCauley is the founder of Blogging While Brown, Michelle Obama Watch, and What About Our Daughters?

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Filed under: Barack Obama • Raw Politics
soundoff (225 Responses)
  1. Jean Gold

    The New Yorker cover is disgusting. The question is the intent which reinforces an image that keeps popping up. Satire, my foot. What organization, what lobby is behind that ugly image? Perhaps the creator David Remnick has a hidden agenda of hatred? The Obama family should put this behind them and let the rest of us protest the New Yorker and boycott it. Obama is a gentleman. Remnick is not. Shame on the New Yorker!

    July 14, 2008 at 10:24 pm |
  2. F.T.

    I think the picture is hilarious !! Even though it was meant for satire, there is alot of truth in it. He associates himself with several anti-patriotic, blame-America-first type people. William Ayers, Jeremiah Wright, Father Flager, etc.. If he becomes president, the terrorists will love him because more buildings will fall. He and his former pastor will throw up there hands and say that we deserved it and the chickens are still coming home to roost. I do not trust Obama to protect us. He would rather cater to the terrorists than fight them.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:24 pm |
  3. j noonan

    This is a slap to the face of every American and promoting hate to our country. Many ways to express ourselves but this was not one of them an apology is in order from the New Yorker to the Obamas for fueling the fire on religion, patriotism and poisoning the media.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:23 pm |
  4. Ilana

    I think it would be best if the press stopped showing the images from the cover and highlighting the offensive images included in the New Yorker's satiric cover. By showing the pictures with random commentary from panelists in the background, people focus on the images and not on the comments. As a result, the press perpetuates this image without proper context just as the New Yorker has done.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:23 pm |
  5. Sidney Shelton

    The New Yorker has really done them self in on this one. They are stupid for allowing this to happen. I will never read this magazine again.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:23 pm |
  6. Gomavitz

    most people will miss the satire. They missed on this one!

    July 14, 2008 at 10:22 pm |
  7. Patricia

    This is yet another example of racial sterotypes and American ignorance. What would be the uproar if the New Yorker depicted John Mcain with a missile strapped to his back and Cindy standing just behind him popping pills? Do you think America would be outraged by the display? Or would they try to excuse the filth as “all in fun satire”?
    Outraged by the display = Caucasians
    “all in fun satire” – “get over it” – Freedom of Speech = African Americans continuely disrespected.

    Now.....exactly ….How far have we come as a nation since Jim Crow?

    July 14, 2008 at 10:22 pm |
  8. John M

    Hear Hear Michael .. I couldn't have said it better ... even if I tried to earlier ... lol

    July 14, 2008 at 10:22 pm |
  9. Jon

    I will defend satire to the utmost degree, but what most are failing to see in this "satire" is the tacit implication that IF Obama were Muslim, THEN it would be bad. I am so sick of the Islamophobia in this country. The Republicans/right wingers who imply that Obama is a Muslim is playing on a racist attitude towards Muslims. Obama's campaign not allowing Muslims behind him at a speech is racist towards Muslims. All news coverage from ABC, to NBC, to CNN use the word's like "Islamic Extremists", " Islamic Terrorists", and so forth always linking Muslims with something BAD is racist towards Muslims. Get off it. Can't people remember relatively recent history, such as Hitler and WWII. Racism and hate towards one particular group or religion is NOT acceptble and should be called as the racism and hate speech that it is.


    July 14, 2008 at 10:22 pm |
  10. Diane

    I was in DC last week with my kids. Their is a man outside the White House Protesting with a picture of Bush dressed like a "terrorist". I think that it's good to have a satire like this. It probably would have been funny if it was in Mad Magazine. Then we could all write it off as a joke. But now I think that how you look at it probably says more about you than it.

    There are still people in the US who think someone who believes in a Muslam religion should not rule the USA. Perhaps the proper question is why can't he believe in whatever he wants? The Muslam's should be offended.

    Also, anyone who thinks that race will not play a role in this election, is wrong. It is just a matter of how big a role it will play. The world is not black and white. There are many other kinds of people.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:22 pm |
  11. Suze

    I'm seething. Not only is it in poor taste, The New Yorker historically had higher standards. It's not funny or the least bit amusing. For those who don't read the article, it is extremely misleading, thusly subtly planting the seed that Senator Obama is really a dark skinned terrorist- someone we good Americans need to avoid, at all costs. Personally, I believe Senator Obama will make a good and more so an effective President of the United States.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:22 pm |
  12. julie

    We should all cancel our subscription to The New Yorker and show our disapproval by wielding our wallet.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:22 pm |
  13. Laura-Lacey, Washington

    Interesting that James Carville is defending the New Yorker and Bill Bennett is the one arguing that the cover is in bad taste. Bennett is right: "this joke is not funny."

    I can't believe Carville is saying that the cartoon is funny and inoffensive. As Martin points out, the article has NOTHING to do with the cover. That means that the intention of the New Yorker was to offend Obama. I now believe it was entirely intentional and was supposed to undermine his campaign.

    The worst enemy of people of color are liberals very often and this is yet another example

    July 14, 2008 at 10:22 pm |
  14. Lakeisha

    I feel that we as Americans are just taking things way to seriously and blowing things out of proportion. I feel that the cover should be a wake up call to all the rumors out there about Obama and his wife. I don't feel that the cover is a smear. As Americans we should really uncover who Obama is for ourselves and stop listening to all the rumors.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:22 pm |
  15. Garfield

    I would not be surprise if at the end of the day a connection is made between this headline and someone he beat to become the democratic dominee. There seems to be a deliberate and calculated under current doing its best to put Obama in a spot when he makes his VP pick. I am surprised & disappointed at Carvill's remark saying, "it is satire and its fine." And his (James) remarks should give a heads up about the forces against Obama.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:22 pm |
  16. John Nelson, Bethel CT

    Horrah for freedom of press, this is not an issue. First, the New Yorker because they are part of this country can post whan they wish. I just don't understand why everyone is calling it satire. What the New Yorker put out was not satire but instead an awful attempt at humor that if it wasn't for the people getting so emotional about it would have made them appear ignorent and foolish. Satire is based on some truth, the comic has none. We all know Obama and Osama rhyme, hahah grow up. I just think people should get over the comic, it shouldn't even be news worthy and I feel Obama take offense to it is a bad political move and would also not show good character

    July 14, 2008 at 10:21 pm |
  17. Casey


    I live in the south and prefer the racism down here that is up front and in your face. The racism displayed by New Yorker magazine is the kind that is hidden by a smile...by so called liberalism. It rears its ugly head when white liberals feel wronged by blacks in some way. In this instance "wrong" that occured was Obama winning the democratic nomination. The New Yorker magazine ran a negative article about the Obamas with an ugly shameful racist cover picture and then says this was meant to be positive?? Michelle had to have an afro? Large exaggerated lips? And this is just "satire"? Come on Anderson, us African Americans are too smart to believe that one.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:21 pm |
  18. Susie

    This is not about being liberal or conservative. This is about basic values...respect for differences. It feels like blatant racism, cloaked as satire. It is not funny, it is not satirical, it is not healthy for our country which has dangerously low morale right now. The only possible good that can come from it is to create some outrage among thinking Americans, especially young people, and create push for a mea culpa from the New Yorker.
    Some wise commentator said earlier today that it's satire if the reader thinks it is. It appears the New Yorker editors think we should believe it is satire if THEY say it is. I say, THEY are wrong.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:21 pm |
  19. Luwaxana from Pasadena, California

    I can't buy this magazine any more...so tastless and stupid!

    July 14, 2008 at 10:21 pm |
  20. Michelle's View from Canada

    I have followed this very closely today and the comments on various blogs and I am absolutely flabbergasted. I was like most and didn't know much about Obama or McCain at the beginning of this race and I want to introduce you to a obscene revelation of how I found out more about them.....read. Don't just read articles by those against them, read from those who are for them, then make a decision. Ignorance is what the world expects of the American people and most of world is not experiencing disappointment. The excuse that you don't know anything about Obama just makes you look more ignorant especially in this information age. It is truly sad that the world knows more about Obama and McCain than the most American people do. This is more so with Obama, It makes me sad to believe that rumors and inuendos will determine an opinion, rather that a educated view of his background and beliefs. So go on America, have ater. The only ones that will pay for true ignorance is America.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:21 pm |
  21. Brenda

    The cover of the New Yorker is simply a smear. Call it and explain it how they want, it only feeds into the stupidity of those who do not seek the truth but feed into what is told them. Barack Obama has been on the political scene for some years now and if he was indeed a Muslim, there would be facts instead of inuendo and hints. Mr. Remnick, as smart as he is knew better. There is freedom of speech and then there is "freedom of speech". The cover of the New Yorker is tasteless. The North and the South is very far apart and what may be seen as satire in New York may be taken as fact south of the Mason Dixon line.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:20 pm |
  22. Patricia

    This is yet another example of racial sterotypes and American ignorance. What would be the uproar if the New Yorker depicted John Mcain with a missile strapped to his back and Cindy standing just behind him popping pills? Do you think America would be outraged by the display? Or would they try to excuse the filth as "all in fun satire"?

    Outraged by the display = Caucasians
    "all in fun satire" – "get over it" – Freedom of Speech = African Americans continuely disrespected.

    Now....How far have we come as a nation since Jim Crow?

    July 14, 2008 at 10:20 pm |
  23. Jean Gold

    The New Yorker cover is disgusting. And there is no question it's intent is to reinforce an image that keeps popping up. Sature, my foot. The question is, what organization, what lobby is behind that ugly image? Perhaps the creator David Remnick (?) has a hidden agenda of hatred? I do think the Obama family should put this behind them and let the rest of us protest to the New Yorker and boycott it. Obama is a gentleman, Remnick is not.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:20 pm |
  24. Kevin

    A picture says a thousands words. This picture (drawing) will stick in the minds of people who won't read the article and believe Obama is just like the picture. I know many people in Minnesota who believe to this day Obama is muslim and wants to make this a muslim country. So the New Yorker is perpetuateing the stereo type whether they intended to or not.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:19 pm |
  25. marilyn

    I am an 48 year old African American female. I am a volunteer for Senator Obama. I find the cover truly offensive and in very poor taste. Since their organization claims that it is meant as a satire of a presidential candidate, does this mean next month that they will do a satire of Senator and Mrs. McCain? Also I would like to know how many other presidential nominatees have the magazine done this type of "satire" cover story?

    I find this is nothing more than an excuse to hide behind racial prejudice and pretend that it is funny. Just as this country is beginning to make major racial progress through this election process and an opportunity to improve the United States' image in the eyes of other countries, the magazine, a well known once respected magazine, has decided to make this country appear as nothing more than backwards idiots who are still living in the 18th century. Shame on you.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:19 pm |
  26. Ruth

    The fact remains if Obama had not twice worn muslim garb and if michelle had not been so anti-American and if Obama did not have fflag burning friends and muslims terrorists friends he wants to play wants to play footsie with, this picture would not exist or be taken so serious...The New Yorker did not make these things up...They merely used Obama's profile against him..

    July 14, 2008 at 10:19 pm |
  27. Ellie

    I "got" the point of the cover, and if nothing else, perhaps anyone who is still under a rock about the facts versus fiction have been educated via all the media buzz. I personally have been amazed at how many people believe what they get in their in boxes. It reminds me of the early days of TV commercials where consumers believed everything they saw. The silver lining? Ive yet to make up my mind on who to vote for, but today i was impressed by how both campaigns handled this. Obama didn't give it any noise, and mccain didn't try to use it to gain airtime for himself. I'm 50 and have voted in every election I've been eligible for. I'm hopeful for the first time that we have 2 candidates who will not go for the low blow but fight a clean fight on the issues

    July 14, 2008 at 10:18 pm |
  28. Brian

    This is an example of(a lot of ) white america 's real feelings/racism. Pretty sad and two faced.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:18 pm |
  29. Nancy Chaffee

    I am so offended by the New Yorker cover featuring Obama and his wife that I intend to cancel my subscription to the magazine. I am waiting to receive this New Yorker. I live in New Mexico and as soon as it comes, I intend to tear off the cover and cancel my subscription via mail. I encourage others to do the same.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:18 pm |
  30. Weeze

    It was defiently a smear, the article did not even fit the cover. In response to WinB, evidently New Yorkers are not the smart if they felt that it was funny. Only a closed minded person would enjoy something like that.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:18 pm |
  31. Joel Strasser

    I think the New Yorker cover is disgusting and the editor should be fired. I'd call it smear. It's somebody's attempt at satire that didn't work.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:18 pm |
  32. david

    Newspapers and magazines have been doing these types of cartoons for a hundred years! The only reason its being brought too light now is because Obama is an "African-American" ! If a cartoon of McCain like this surfaced it wouldnt be an issue! Race has everything too do with this election.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:18 pm |
  33. Michelle K

    I am sicken by the cover..it is 2008 and yes we are on our way to a black President, Like it or not! This just shows how some Americans still think and how ignorant some can be.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:18 pm |
  34. Elmo C

    How soon we forget,The First Amendment and Larry Flint of Hustler Magazine. You all pick and choose what rights you want and don't let the others have a say. Soon no one will have rihgts because you are all shouting. You can't gore my ox,but i can gore your's. Lets not forget Maplethorpe.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:18 pm |
  35. Robert

    The New Yorker is a Satire publcation. The Obama cover is Satire! I don't remember anyone, especially the Liberals, who are all upset over this, coming around and demeaning the New Yorker when they had George W. Bush on the cover dressed like Saddam Hussein, in an Iraqi uniform with medals, including a Saddam mustache! Where were you then? Let's talk about this!

    July 14, 2008 at 10:18 pm |
  36. Louise

    I wonder if anyone would consider it satire if they put a cartoon of McCain in a Klan suit and his spouse holding an oozie on the cover of Ebony Magazine. Racism has reared it's ugly head people. America has not changed one bit. This is racial hatred and smear not political satire.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:18 pm |
  37. Dee

    This article made me question if The New Yorker magazine is a conservative magazine. It's actually a liberal magazine. The editors are liberals too. This just shows the idiocy of these liberal editors.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:18 pm |
  38. Andrew L

    The fact that the media is even talking about this on their broadcasts, is disgusting and plays right into the hands of those who perpetuate these hateful and completely false lies.

    The media should be ashamed. We have real issues out there but they would rather talk about distractions. Shame.

    As Anderson said, today was the deadliest day in Afghanistan in three years. But the media decides to lead with this story?

    July 14, 2008 at 10:18 pm |
  39. John in San Diego

    The real issue here is that most people will only ever see the cover and never read the article. The cover will make exactly the wrong impression on those who walk past it as it's displayed on the sidewalk newsstand. The New Yorker published an excellent article that pints out the mis-characterizations that are being propogated out there, and the cartoon would have made the point had it been printed inside the magazine as an illustration. Putting it in the face of the general public by spplashing it on the cover (with not even a headline indicating the intended satire, by the way) was a college newspaper editor's kind of stupid mistake.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:18 pm |
  40. Al Jackson

    Well, I think the New Yorker and other periodicals should survey people on how they perceive a picture when they want to do satire that is that controversial. I appreciate the fact that they were trying to bring light to the false rumors running a muck about the Obamas but the picture actually reinforced those rumors. With no headline, the picture standing alone represented what they were attacking.

    And for John who made the comment on this blog "God forbid if anything is said against Obama", that is not the point here John! The picture, the cover of the magazine was tasteless, not thought throug properly and unnecesary!

    July 14, 2008 at 10:17 pm |
  41. charlie thomas

    What is the religion of the editors and publishers of the New Yorker? Are they Jewish? Do they have a problem with a Black presidential candidate?

    Yeah, they do.

    Religion does it's hateful thing again.

    I'm so mad, as an American, about the savagery that each religion inflicts on the Constitution that I hope all the major religions just go ahead and destroy those of us who consider ourselves to be a part of "humanity".

    The religious folk aren't worthy of the name "American".

    May they all just drop dead.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:17 pm |
  42. Emad K.

    I think the issue here goes beyond slander of Obama. The real problem presented by the cover is the portrayal of Muslims as terrorists. I am a strong supporter of Obama, but am more offended by the New Yorker's encouragement of such racial profiling!

    July 14, 2008 at 10:17 pm |
  43. L.K.

    I am a republican. I will not be voting for Obama. However, I find this cover to be disrespectful and distasteful to someone that was elected by Americans .Yes, we have freedom of speech but let's have a little class with that freedom. As a teacher, I work to get my students to respect themselves and others. What kind of example is this???

    July 14, 2008 at 10:17 pm |
  44. W. Shaw

    What an absolutely disgusting cover. It is racist, it is divisive, it is unpatriotic. New Yorker and its editor Mr Remick you should be ashamed of yourself. Everyone said that this election was going to get nasty when a black man stepped in. This is just the beginning. God Bless the Obamas-they are going to need it.

    If a so called liberal publication can do this can you imagine what the conservative publications have in store for this man. I hope he lives to see his next birthday in this so called land of the free and home of the brave.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:17 pm |
  45. Alan Belcher

    Portraying Michelle Obama as Angela Davis ??
    That isn’t remotely satire, but it is definitely incredibly dangerous and irresponsible of the New Yorker. Their greed for attention at the expense of foresight makes one question why the magazine deemed their hi-brow needed such a poisonous shot of sensational botox.

    As for throwing the american flag in the fire if/when Obama wins the White House… that slight fraction of satire is way overshot by the contagious image’s power to fuel holy-patriotic assassination plots.

    Whatever one views the value of this "satirical" drawing, it is too dangerous an image to display on the cover... it should be inside the magazine where genuine New Yorker readers would be the only ones to see it.

    That cover is ugly.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:17 pm |
  46. Lyn

    The New Yorker has had their '15 min. of fame', and my guess is they will fade to black... Because of the instant news provided by the internet, many magazines are going broke these days... Perhaps this was a last ditch attempt to salvage this rag.

    What they don't seem to understand is the fact many simple people believe this to be the truth... It's just so very sad...

    July 14, 2008 at 10:17 pm |
  47. Natalie Wittke

    Thought "The New Yorker" had more sense and
    taste. It is so degrading and I feel that the New Yorker is not a magazine I want to read anymore.
    Natalie Wittke
    An American who lives in Germany.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:17 pm |
  48. Suze

    This is clearly a smear tactic to discredit the Obamas and to promote racisim in America. I wonder, will The New Yorker portray Senator McCain in the Oval Office dressed in a Klu Klux Klan robe with the Confederate flag waving, a burning cross in the background and a portrait of George Wallace hanging above the mantle? I think not.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:17 pm |
  49. burley ray

    the more things change the more it stay,s the same?

    July 14, 2008 at 10:17 pm |
  50. Ahmad

    this just highlights the problem with Muslims and Arabs in this country. I mean when did Muslim become synonymous with terrorism? when is it going to change? I mean if this was about another religion would we even care? I am a supporter of Senator Obama but this has become too much. Look at his website, Jews for Obama and Christians for Obama. i am just amazed at this!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    July 14, 2008 at 10:17 pm |
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