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19:40, 09 February 2018

New Mexico Newspaper Apologizes for Cartoon Portraying ‘Dreamers’ as Muggers


New Mexico Newspaper Apologizes for Cartoon Portraying ‘Dreamers’ as Muggers

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ALBUQUERQUE — The editor of a single of New Mexico’s top newspapers, The Albuquerque Journal, issued an apology on Thursday more than an editorial cartoon that numerous men and women interpreted as a bigoted attack on Hispanics.

Prompting outrage from prominent Democrats and Republicans in the state, the cartoon, by Sean Delonas, depicts a white couple becoming accosted in a back alley by three men. One is holding the couple at gunpoint and taking the woman’s purse. Another is wearing a jacket emblazoned with “MS-13,” the name of a gang that President Trump and others have repeatedly invoked to denounce illegal immigration. The third has on a ski mask and a suicide vest of smoking explosives.

The male victim tells the woman, “Now, honey … I think they favor to be called ‘Dreamers,’” a reference to young undocumented immigrants predominantly from Latin America, and adds, “Or future Democrats.”

The cartoon, which was published on Wednesday, quickly elicited criticism about New Mexico, where about 48.5 percent of the population is Hispanic, the highest percentage of any state in the nation. Tensions have simmered in the state, which Mr. Trump lost in the 2016 election, over the federal government’s immigration policies.

Karen Moses, the editor of The Albuquerque Journal, stated in her apology that the cartoon “appeared to us to be poking at President Trump’s rhetoric by portraying a quaking Republican couple who have been painting Dreamers with a broad, totally false, brush.”

But Mr. Delonas, the cartoonist, said that whilst he sympathized with Ms. Moses, he disagreed with her assessment of the illustration.

“That’s not the way I study it,” mentioned Mr. Delonas, 56, a former cartoonist at The New York Post. “I’ve learned that MS-13 is purposely sending minors over here to commit crimes. I’m quite positive that the cartels are employing minors for a lot of their drug dealing.”

Mr. Delonas emphasized that he believed immigrants need to come legally to the United States. The cartoon was published soon after Mr. Trump contended in his State of the Union speech that undocumented immigrants “have brought on the loss of innocent lives,” and focused specifically on MS-13, a gang formed in Los Angeles in the 1980s by refugees fleeing El Salvador’s civil war.

Mr. Trump’s positioning has drawn sharp rebukes from critics who argue that most immigrants have nothing to do with gangs. Meanwhile, members of Congress have been unable to forge protections for the so-named Dreamers, who were brought to the United States illegally as children. In September, Mr. Trump suspended an Obama-era initiative to defend them from deportation.

New Mexico’s complete congressional delegation, such as Representative Steve Pearce, a conservative Republican, and Senators Martin Heinrich and Tom Udall, each Democrats, issued a joint statement calling the cartoon “racist and divisive.”

Responding to a request for comment, Ms. Moses referred to her apology, which was integrated in a statement published on The Journal’s site. In that statement, she stated journalists in her newsroom did not have a part in deciding which cartoons to publish, a choice left to the editorial board.

“There clearly will be an additional story tomorrow, as we treat this controversy as we would with any newsworthy controversy,” Ms. Moses added in an email.

Mr. Delonas is no stranger to controversy. In 2009, the media magnate Rupert Murdoch issued a private apology over a cartoon by Mr. Delonas of a chimpanzee that was interpreted by some as a racist attack on President Barack Obama.

Mr. Delonas stated he did not know if any other newspapers aside from The Journal had published his newest cartoon.

Daryl Cagle, the publisher of Cagle Cartoons, which syndicates Mr. Delonas’s operate, stated that much more than half of daily, paid-circulation newspapers in the United States subscribe to the company’s service, but that he did not know how a lot of other newspapers had published the cartoon.

“I’m not surprised that this cartoon sparks outrage,” Mr. Cagle said by email. “It is up to every single newspaper editor to make a decision what is appropriate to run in their own newspaper. My individual view is that I agree with the critics of Sean’s cartoon.”

In addition to criticism from subscribers, political leaders and immigration advocates, The Journal faced outrage on Thursday from some members of its personal employees.

Roberto Rosales, a photographer for the newspaper who is from El Salvador, said on Twitter that he condemns MS-13. But he added: “How do you feel this cartoon makes me feel? Pathetic!”

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Published at Fri, 09 Feb 2018 15:29:24 +0000

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