Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Satire, but Ridiculous


The New Yorker is facing a firestorm of criticism over a caricature of presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama and his wife, Michelle.

The cover of its July 21 "Politics of Fear" issue—hitting newsstands Monday—depicts the Illinois senator in radical Islamic clothing giving a so-called "fist-bump" to Michelle Obama, who is shown with a machine gun strapped across her shoulder. In the background, an American flag burns in a fireplace underneath a framed picture of Osama bin Laden. The cover was illustrated by Barry Blitt, who "satirizes the use of scare tactics and misinformation in the Presidential election to derail Barack Obama's campaign," according to a New Yorker press release.

"Satire is part of what we do," New Yorker editor David Remnick said in a statement. "And it is meant to bring things out into the open, to hold up a mirror to the absurd. And that's the spirit of this cover."

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