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Here’s a fun story. The color cartoon shown here is what appeared in my client newspapers but it is not the way I originally wrote or drew it. The black and white cartoon below was my first attempt.
My editors at the syndicate didn’t understand the original cartoon (I don’t blame them) and thought that it might be seen as racist, and they were undoubtedly right. As those of you who have read my blog regularly know, people will complain about racism if given even a sliver of an opportunity. Complaints to newspapers are bad for business, so I changed the gag to a ventriloquist theme, which is a better cartoon anyway.
The original gag was supposed to be that a couple of white ladies see a middle-aged black lady walking a blond baby in a stroller and think she has adopted him. Their comment is meant to imply that they see this sort of thing all the time. What they are actually seeing are nannies, of course. I don’t know about other parts of the country, but here in NYC one regularly sees middle-aged women-of-color walking white kids. Evidently, lots of rich white folks don’t raise their own kids and who can blame them? Making babies is so much more fun than making sure they don’t grow up to be scourges on society.*
*This statement is sarcasm.