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Spike Lee, Judge Mathis Join NY Post Protest

Famed director Spike Lee, Judge Greg Mathis and number of others will rally in front of The New York Post’s offices today (February 20), as the fallout from a controversial cartoon continues.

 

The controversial cartoon, which was published on February 18, featured two police officers standing over a bullet-riddled dead monkey, with the caption “They’ll have to find someone else to write the next stimulus bill.”

 

The picture made nationwide headlines, but the backlash surrounding the cartoon prompted the post to issue an “apology” yesterday evening (February 19).

 

“It [the cartoon] was meant to mock an ineptly written federal stimulus bill, period.” The New York Post said in a statement. “But it has been taken as something else — as a depiction of President Obama, as a thinly veiled expression of racism. This most certainly was not its intent; to those who were offended by the image, we apologize. However, there are some in the media and in public life who have had differences with The Post in the past — and they see the incident as an opportunity for payback. To them, no apology is due. Sometimes a cartoon is just a cartoon — even as the opportunists seek to make it something else.”

 

Spike Lee, Judge Mathis and The Reverend Al Sharpton will gather in front of The Post’s mid-town Manhattan offices to address what he deemed a “partial apology” from The New York Post for publishing the cartoon, which was drawn by Sean Delonas.

 

Hit making singer John Legend was one of the first musicians to publicly comment on the cartoon at length, in a recently published open letter to The Post.

 

“I can’t imagine what possible justification you have for this,” John Legend wrote. “I’ve read your lame statement in response to the outrage you provoked. Shame on you for dodging the real issue and then using the letter as an opportunity to attack Rev. Sharpton. This is not about Rev. Sharpton. It’s about the cartoon being blatantly racist and offensive…You are responsible for printing this cartoon, and I hope you experience some real consequences for it. I’m personally boycotting your paper and won’t do any interviews with any of your reporters, and I encourage all of my colleagues in the entertainment business to do so as well. I implore your advertisers to seriously reconsider their business relationships with you as well.”

 

During yesterday’s protest, over 200 people showed up to denounce the cartoon, which was meant to be a satirical take on an incident in which a crazed chimpanzee was shot to death by police officers in Connecticut, after the animal attacked its owner.

 

The Reverend Al Sharpton has echoed Legend’s sentiments and has also called for a boycott of the daily newspaper.

 

Spike Lee, Judge Mathis and Reverend Sharpton will lead the protest today starting at 5:00 PM.

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