Newspaper defends 'racist' Serena Williams cartoon

12 September, 2018, 20:59 | Author: Dominic Spencer
  • Australian newspaper insists controversial Serena Williams cartoon is not racist

In comments published by News Corp., Knight said that he created the cartoon after watching Williams' "tantrum" during her U.S. Open final loss to Naomi Osaka on Saturday and that it was designed to illustrate "her poor behaviour on the day, not about race".

"What I'm interested to know is have we heard from Serena Williams herself as to whether she's offended by it?"

PARIS, FRANCE - MAY 30: Naomi Osaka of Japan celebrates during her ladies singles second round match against Zarina Diyas of Kazhakstan during day four of the 2018 French Open at Roland Garros on May 30, 2018 in Paris, France.

Whether it is was intended or not, Knight's cartoon has been widely condemned overseas with many arguing it reinforces a growing global perception that Australia is a country of racists, with one notable exception. "I honestly believe that, in Knight's mind's eye, that is actually how he sees Serena - as a hulking, brutish simian rampaging in front of the world", Harriot said.

"I don't think that Mark Knight sat down with his 64 Crayola super pack with hatred in his heart for Serena Williams".

In doing so, Knight draws facial features reflecting the dehumanizing Jim Crow caricatures so common in the 19th and 20th centuries. The tennis player called the umpire a "thief" and claimed she was being treated differently to how men would be in the same context.

In Britain, where fiercely competitive tabloids often trade in sensationalism, Rupert Murdoch-owned newspapers have been accused of sexism, racism and xenophobia over the years. "There is a huge double standard for women when it comes to how bad behavior is punished - and not just in tennis", Navratilova said.

The Washington Post ran a searing post about the cartoon, calling it "racist" and reminiscent of the era of racial segregation in the US.

Knight's cartoon in response to Williams on-court and off-court antics quickly came under fire from Chicago sports radio host Julie DiCaro. "It's been tipped into USA racial politics and now I'm unfortunately embroiled in that". "This is not a joke", she told the AP.

Knight was attacked by celebs such as Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling, rapper Nicki Minaj, comedian Kathy Griffin, basketball player Ben Simmons, and many more.

"I can't undraw the cartoon". And the US-based National Association of Black Journalists said the cartoon was "repugnant on many levels".

Along with reprinting Serena, the paper added other "controversial" cartoons from the artist including a chubby Kim Jong-un and a villainous Donald Trump.

The Herald Sun responded to critics accusing it of racism and sexism after publishing the drawing, writing: "If the self-appointed censors of Mark Knight get their way on his Serena Williams cartoon, our new politically correct life will be very boring indeed".


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