“Ah’s thankful thet even tho’ Ah don’t amount t’nuthin’, mah boy is got a chance t’amount to twice as much!” —Pappy Yokum (in Li’l Abner by Al Capp)

I used to love the comics when I was a kid.  Once, I slogged a mile and a half in a snowstorm in order to buy the morning paper at the old general store next to the post office so’s not to miss the latest adventures of Dick Tracy and Li’l Abner.  In these enlightened modern times, of course, our all-caring nanny state would quickly jail any parents that allowed a youngster to make such a ‘hazardous’ journey, especially when it followed an officially unapproved breakfast, and was undertaken in order to read such subversive material as the following:

I thought about that long-ago trek while pondering the brouhaha over Garry Trudeau’s recent ‘Doonesbury’ abortion strips:

‘Doonesbury’ abortion comic strips have newspapers, partisans divided

Conservatives are not laughing at “Doonesbury” comic strips this week.

The often-controversial strip by Garry Trudeau waded deep into the heart of the Texas abortion sonogram debate, with a week-long series focusing on a woman who enters a Texas abortion clinic and deals with a succession of bumbling pro-lifers. Some papers are not carrying this week’s strips.

…Trudeau told Reuters that he was inspired by the “appalling” bills in Texas and Virginia that call for women to view an ultrasound of their unborn child before undergoing an abortion.

Not surprisingly, reaction to the “Doonesbury” story line pretty much fell along partisan lines. For instance, MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow called newspapers that pulled the comics “cowardly.”

Somehow, I can’t picture Maddow or any of our other intrepid Democrats traipsing through a blizzard to collect the latest ‘Doonesbury’. I wouldn’t either. For one thing, I rarely sympathize with Garry Trudeau’s opinions. Still, that’s not reason enough to consign him to some remote editorial landfill. After all, this is America, where everybody can speak their minds, even if said minds are as normally as barren of thought as those of Hanoi Jane Fonda and the rest of the censorious Left. But at last count, 47 representatives of the poltroonish press had canned Trudeau’s sequence. This not the first time that a comic strip has been unceremoniously yanked from its home pages.  Li’l Abner met the same fate in 1947:

The controversy, as reported in Time, centered on Capp’s portrayal of the United States Senate. Said Edward Leech of Scripps, “We don’t think it is good editing or sound citizenship to picture the Senate as an assemblage of freaks and crooks…boobs and undesirables.” (Wikipedia/Al Capp)

It’s hard to know what else you’d call them, even today. Reading the above, you might think that Harry Reid had been in office for 65 years. But, if the boob fits…

Liberals of the past, like their modern offspring, were usually only too happy to urge expurgation of such satirical Al Capp offerings as these:

The proscription of opinion is inherently unAmerican, of course, and if effectuated by public officials, illegal under the 1st Amendment of the Constitution.  It matters not if the censored party is Garry Trudeau or Rush Limbaugh.  Somehow, though, the justification for censure is always the same.  As Charlie Schultz’s Linus said:

See also: Rush and the New Blacklist|Pat Buchanan via WND


About Bob Mack

Retired since 2003. Military Service: U.S. Army, 36th Artillery Group, Babenhausen, Germany 1966-67; 1st Signal Brigade, Republic of Vietnam, 1967-68 Attended University of Miami, 1969-73
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11 Responses to Doonesburied

  1. Sherry says:

    Oh my! In one of the cartoons the social worker wants a bum to work on and the woman replies: The USA is producing social workers faster than we can produce bums. 4 more years of Obama and that won’t be so plus, the social workers will be working for the government.

    Interesting that they had OWS-ers back in ’63! Stealing people’s property/businesses to hold their meetings…Maybe that’s where the gray ponytails got their idea…a blast from their past.

  2. bunkerville says:

    That was a trip down memory land. Dick Tracey where justice seemed easy to come by in a just world, or so we thought. I remember well looking forward to Sunday when the comics would be in color. Of course, we could only buy the papers and a few other items because of the “Blue laws”. Wow, I had forgotton. A time when families were suppose to spend time together. I sure have drifted!

  3. Censorship is evil no matter the persuasion of the censor. Linus does have a point, however, mankind would be great if it weren’t for people.

    Bob Mack, you have put out a lot of great post; but this my be the best of the best.

  4. Bob says:

    Leave it to doctrinaire knee-jerk leftist Garry Trudeau to take a law designed to give women informed choice (something liberals would be in favor of in almost any other context), and twist it to make it look like government-sanctioned gang rape. What a douchenozzle.

  5. Firepower says:

    Mallard Fillmore is today’s comic standard-bearer.

    The date for the “social worker babes” strip would help place it in an era.

    • Bob Mack says:

      I believe Capp’s “social worker” strip came out in 1965, the early days of LBJ’s not-so-Great Society. Today’s comics, what’s left of ’em, can’t really compete with the old timers. I’m not sure whether that’s because of the space restrictions placed on them by penurious newspaper editors, because of the general dumbing-down of the population, or a bit of both. But Mallard’s a nice antidote to Doonesbury.

  6. Pingback: Teeing it up: A Round at the LINKs (Losing our liberties edition) | SENTRY JOURNAL

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