Each of The News’ editorial pages features an editorial cartoon, and as a member of the editorial staff, on occasion it is my role to download the cartoon for the day that will run for readers to see.
There are many reasons for an editorial cartoon. One is to poke fun or critique the actions of certain people or groups, and in many cases those are politicians. Another reason for the cartoons, which are not to be mistaken for comic strips, is to get readers thinking about current events. And they serve as a way to honor those who have died, like the ones honoring Neil Armstrong recently.
As I look to choose an editorial cartoon to run in the paper, my attempt is to poke fun on both sides of the political fence, or both sides of the fence on any issue that might arise. I try not to pick just one side of the battle and only air the errors of its ways.
But at times, that can be difficult.
As everyone is aware, it is an election season, a presidential election season. And while there are some cartoons teasing President Obama and things he’s said and done, for the large part there are daily editorial cartoons coming through making fun of candidate Mitt Romney, and on occasion his running mate, Paul Ryan.
In trying not to run cartoons about the same people day after day, it can be hard to find anything else to run.
Today’s cartoon is a hit on the NHL lockout which is a hot topic among sports fans at the moment.
There also was a cartoon about the Boy Scouts’ national scandal over not reporting sexual misconduct toward scouts among its leaders and volunteers, which seems to me much like the scandals that plagued the Catholic Church in recent years.
For the artists who design the cartoons, their minds must be so creative, because some of the images they come up with are beyond anything most people would think up.
Some of the cartoons are so risque I question what newspaper could actually get away with running them, while others are tamer and the ones that The News staff download to print.
I just enjoy getting a laugh at the ideas and opinions they portray of their characters, and while some may make readers of the various sides of an issue angry or happy, the intent is to get people thinking about what is going on in our world and highlight the current events that at times are changing the course of history.
Wendy Byerly Wood is the associate editor of The Mount Airy News. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 719-1923.