The Mike Peters Gun Violence Cartoon That Took My Breath Away

I subscribe to dailyink and one of the editorial cartoonists on my daily reading list is Pulitzer Prize winner Mike Peters. I've always been a fan of Mike's work - both editorial cartoons and Mother Goose And Grimm - and, having met Mike in person, I'm just a fan of him in general.

In my opinion his most recent cartoon on the debate swirling around gun control in the aftermath of the Newtown shootings is an example of editorial cartooning at its finest. I don't generally turn to the op-ed page of my newspaper expecting a light hearted chuckle. I want commentary. I expect it from the syndicated columnists I read, such as E.J. Dionne and David Brooks, and I expect it from the cartoonists as well. That's what I think editorial cartoons are supposed to do. They are social commentary.

Recently I was at a talk given by another Pulitzer Prize winner,  cartoonist Ann Telnaes. A member of the audience asked her if it was hard to show both sides of an issue in her work. Ann's response (I'm paraphrasing) was to say it wasn't hard at all. Because she doesn't do it. Because that's not her job. Her job is to present a certain point of view. It doesn't need to be fair. It doesn't need to be balanced. It must simply make a point.

The point of the above cartoon by Mike is pretty hard to miss.

It took my breath away.

I hope we are ready for some change on this issue.....

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