Monday, November 12, 2007

The cartoon that launched a thousand spittle-flecked rants

As would befit a time of solemn remembrance, this past weekend was calm, peaceful and introspective, until:

That big city commie propaganda rag, the Red Star *GASP* published an editorial cartoon -- bastards!!! -- and the wingnut-o-sphere erupted with outrage, spewing righteous indignation from every orifice like out-of-control sperm whales.

The Star could have picked a better time than Remembrance Day weekend to run that particular cartoon. It's actually pretty lame anyway, but one can see its point. Given the pseudo-military lingo used by PR and political hacks ("strategy", "targeting", "attack ads" etc), and the fact that Toronto is (and always will be) an impenetrable barrier between Harper and his vaunted majority, it sort of works. But it would have worked a little better a week later. It had nothing to do with Remembrance Day, and if I'd seen it prior to the outburst of outrage I doubt I'd have made the connection, but then I'm an insensitive thug with no military background. Oh well, "mistakes were made", as they say.

But wow, whew! You'd think the cartoon depicted some bozo desecrating a cenotaph by the level of outrage it provoked. I mean, RAGE! In response, the ever-highbrow SDA did a classy little re-tooling of "In Flanders Fields"(!!), tweaking it to add some partisan political shots -- probably not exactly what Lieut.Col. McCrae had in mind when he wrote it, nor the soldiers in whose honour it was written. I can't ask my great-grandfather who died in WWI, because he's, you know, dead.

Not all denizens of the wingnutosphere were impressed with the off-target attempt at irony, but those who were were defended it as "having to fight dirty with dirty fighters" (or tacky with tacky, or disrespectful with disrespectful or some such happy horseshit). Taking it to the next level, they're sharpening their crayons for a "Letters To The Editor" assault, demanding! an apology! to the people of Canada!, as is their right, so sure, that's all good. But what I want to know... is...

... if the Star owes Canada an apology for the cartoon, all things being equal (yeah right), doesn't that mean SDA owes veterans an apology for trashing McCrae's iconic poem? Just sayin'!!!

Update: On apologies...