Michigan Braces for Its Own Toxic Slick to Wash Ashore…

Originally published in the Grand Rapids Press, May 22, 2010

Yeah, I had a few misgivings about this week’s comic. I mean, it’s true enough that Michigan’s governor’s race is ramping up to nasty here in Michigan. With a logjam of well-known and well-funded candidates, the Republicans in particular must differentiate themselves to voters. And the easiest way to do that is to slag your opponent. So the mudslinging, from passive-aggressive to overt, has begun. Of course it will be curious when, after the party candidate is decided, these same people will dismiss or deny all the harsh words. “What? I called him a thieving moral degenerate? Oh, ha ha! I don’t think I said exactly that! And besides, his election opponent is a witless, mouth-breathing buffoon.” That’s how it works, you know. Re: Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton
No, my slight queasiness comes from potentially making light of the oil spill disaster in the Gulf of Mexico. I mean, Michigan is nothing if not water-based, and I can’t imagine the absolute devastation a minor oil spill would cause to our beaches and wetlands, let alone something on the scale of this one. My intent was not to belittle, but to simply employ a cartooning trick of using a more widely understood issue to give context to a less well-known issue. So I’m asking to be granted absolution, although I’m not really sure from whom. I guess if you think I’m a jerk, can you let this one slide? Thanks!

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