U. Texas Newspaper Publishes Racist Cartoon on Trayvon Martin’s Death [UPDATED]
The Daily Texan, the student newspaper for the University of Texas, published—and then removed from their online edition—a racially offensive cartoon ridiculing the media’s coverage of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin’s death.
The cartoonist, Stephanie Eisner, depicts “The Media” as an old motherly type who tells fictitious fables—or “yellow journalism”—to a baby (which likely symbolizes the hundreds of thousands of young Americans who’ve been following the case). The stories are about how the “big bad white” man killed the “handsome, sweet, innocent colored boy.”
Yep, that’s right: They used the word “colored.”
Martin died last month after being shot by George Zimmerman, a white and Hispanic self-appointed neighborhood watchman, for looking “suspicious.” The 17-year-old was found carrying only a bag of Skittles and a can of iced tea and had been on his way to his father’s fiancé’s house when he was pursued by Zimmerman.
Martin’s death has garnered a firestorm of media attention, student protests, comments from President Obama, and a federal probe.
UPDATE: The Daily Texan has posted this statement, which attempts to shift any blame from the publication onto the cartoonist:
A controversial editorial cartoon on the Trayvon Martin shooting was published Tuesday on the Opinion page of The Daily Texan. The Daily Texan Editorial Board recognizes the sensitive nature of the cartoon’s subject matter.
The views expressed in the cartoon are not those of the editorial board. They are those of the artist. It is the policy of the editorial board to publish the views of our columnists and cartoonists, even if we disagree with them.
Naima Ramos-Chapman is an associate editor at Campus Progress.