Alabama’s Student Paper Apologies for ‘Racist’ Cartoon That Isn’t Racist
The cartoon was intended as a lighthearted look at some of the more absurd explanations given for Alabama’s collapse at the end of the Iron Bowl game against Auburn last Saturday. Many fans across the state took to social media and personal platforms to place blame for the team’s loss. To The Crimson White, and much of the student body, the blame was based on ridiculous and unfounded reasons.
Unfortunately, many people have developed an unhealthy opinion that all of the problems the United States has faced is a direct result of the decisions President Barack Obama has made during his terms as president. To place blame for the problems of the world on one man’s shoulders is not only disrespectful to our country’s leader, but also a scapegoat, devaluing the real roots of the problems themselves.
This cartoon was, by no means, intended to be racist or insulting. It was the unfortunate product of editorial oversight and a lack of a critical eye in determining possible implications the cartoon could have. This mistake will not be made again.
There are few things worse than a white guy—like me!—lecturing anyone on what constitutes racism in 2013. But to say the Crimson's cartoon was racist is to completely ignore things like “context” and “humor.” To anyone who is not looking for a kneejerk excuse to call a Southern paper raycessss, the cartoon is a variation of the “Thanks, Obama” meme, which can be found anywhere and everywhere since '09.
The meme is sarcastic. A woman is blaming her inability to pick up a cumin spice bottle on the president. A country is blaming all of its most minute problems on the president. And a cartoon is blaming the Alabama loss on the president. It's a joke. This apology was dumb.
One more quick note: The Crimson White published one of the best and most important student newspaper stories of the past five years. It'll ultimately be the catalyst in desegregating certain parts of Alabama's Greek system. The paper is pretty great in my book.