Call it the Watermelon Summit.
The editorial cartoon rumpus at the Boston Herald has arrived at its inevitable destination: A sitdown between Herald editors and the local chapter of the NAACP.
From Sunday’s edition of the flavory local tabloid.
Herald vows to work with Boston NAACP
Curry: Obama cartoon ‘perpetuates stereotype’
The Boston Herald will work with the Boston chapter of the NAACP to address the issues raised by the publication of an editorial page cartoon last week.
The cartoon, focusing on security breaches at the White House, depicted President Obama brushing his teeth as an intruder suggested he try watermelon-flavored toothpaste. Cartoonist Jerry Holbert said he intended no racial overtones and apologized as did the newspaper.
The NAACP yesterday called the Herald apologies “inadequate” and said the publication of the cartoon on the paper’s opinion page “reopened the wounds of race” in Boston. It requested a series of remedies including a community meeting to discuss the editorial page cartoon.
That would be Boston NAACP president Michael Curry in the subhead, who got this response from a Herald statement:
”The Herald has made it clear that this editorial page cartoon was unacceptable in its insensitivity and racial overtones . . . We look forward to continuing our partnership with the NAACP and meeting with them to address the concerns that arose as a result.”
But crosstown at the Boston Globe, the Herald seemed to have a very different message for the NAACP.
Curry said that Herald executives told him they were ready to hear from the black community but had not yet committed to pursuing any action beyond a meeting.
“They said to me that they’re willing to do whatever and they’re expecting to hear from the community at this forum,” he said. “I think what’s important here is they’ve said no to nothing at this point.”
Then again, they’ve also said yes to nothing, yes?