Monday, December 27, 2010

2010: DADT as seen by political cartoonists and satirists

'Gays Too Precious To Risk In Combat,' Says General

As usual the most brilliant satire was owned by The Onion, which produced the fake video above, truly the most exquisitely savage indictment of Pentagon PR duplicity made this year. [Correction: although timely and biting, this video was made in 2007.] SNL should take lessons from The Onion in acting, writing, and production values.

In April, The Onion also "reported:" Closeted Soldiers Getting In Last Clandestine Rendezvous Before 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' Repealed
Ending 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' is a major step forward for the rights of all gay soldiers," said a high-ranking officer who wished to remain anonymous. "That said, there's nothing quite like the thrill of approaching a fellow soldier under the cover of night, undressing frantically behind an Abrams tank, and engaging in wild, forbidden intercourse knowing full well that you'll be kicked out of the military if you're caught. God. What a rush.
July in The Onion brought the following:

Repeal Of 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' Paves Way For Gay Sex Right On Battlefield, Opponents Fantasize
Many active-duty service members told reporters allowing gay individuals to be open about their sexuality would result in great discomfort among platoons overseas.
     "The last thing I need after a 12-hour reconnaissance patrol is to know I'm hitting the showers with some guy who might be checking me out and who might, after seeing what I have to work with, find himself wondering if I too long for the firm yet tender embrace of another man," Army Cpl. Dale Montgomery said. "So, in conclusion, what were we talking about again?"

Political cartoonists had a field day with DADT in 2010, with many cartoons predictably showing coffins (one with a text balloon reading "You go, girl!"), helmets atop rifles planted in dirt or variations of Joe Rosenthal's famous staged picture of Marines raising the flag at Iwo Jima. A surprising number of cartoons ripped John McCain.
     The Australian-born Pat Oliphant used DADT as a springboard to take a slap at the military-industrial complex and to imply that the fight for gay inclusion in the military on equal terms was a fool's game.
Perhaps the nastiest example of cartoonist homophobia was exhibited by Chuck Asay, of the Colorado Springs Gazette Telegraph. Asay is described by Creator's Syndicate as one of the few "quality conservative cartoonists working in the industry today." Asay's drawing pandered to the basest of bigots by depicting a Marine, supposedly emboldened by the repeal of DADT, copping a feel of another jarhead and being subsequently flattened.

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