While some seek to assist those suffering from the tragic flooding in Houston, others seek to politicize the victims.
Matt Wuerker is known for his political cartoons that oppose right-wing ideologies. His “art” usually makes fun of the Right’s agendas, according to The Federalist. The latest piece to come from the artist makes fun of Texans struggling to escape the flooding from Hurricane Harvey–and it was shared by Politico.
The cartoon shows a Texan man being rescued from the flood by Coast Guard members saying, “Angels! Sent by God!” While attending to the man’s daughter, an irritated Coast Guard member is depicted responding with, “Er, actually Coast Guard…sent by the Government.”
The backlash to the insensitive cartoon was immense. People criticized the cartoon for mocking victims of the flooding while emerging reports estimated more than 50 deaths.
T. Becket Adams, a correspondent for The Washington Examiner, swiftly condemned the cartoon in a tweet. “Wait until *after* all the corpses have been fished out the water before taking lazy, partisan cheap shots at an entire state.”
Politico eventually deleted their tweet of the cartoon due to the backlash, without any response to clarify why it was initially posted, or why it was ultimately removed.
Wuerker later sent out a Twitter response to critics, not to offer an apology, but to clarify who he was mocking. “Respectfully — it’s making fun of the Secessionist movement. Not at all aimed at all Texans.”
An odd comment, considering the last serious attempt at Texas secession was after the presidential election in 2012, according to Wikipedia. While there was brief interest following the UK vote on leaving the European Union (Brexit) and a possibility of Hillary Clinton winning the election, Texas has seemingly put off any talk of secession.
In fact, the strongest advocate for secession currently is the Democrat state of California, according to The Daily Wire. Following Trump’s inauguration, the travel ban, and his efforts to crack down on sanctuary cities, California lawmakers expressed an interest in seceding as soon as 2018.
The most upsetting points are the cartoon’s stab at conservatism, mocking the depicted Texan’s faith, and suggesting he should instead be grateful to the government–not God. The gross ignorance here is that faith-based individuals would be too blinded by their faith to realize when their fellow man is assisting them, giving the credit to God instead of those who help.
Yet Wuerker is not alone in his attempts to politicize the tragedy while rescue efforts are still under way. On Tuesday Reuters reported that a number of scientists were trying to use Hurricane Harvey as evidence of climate change.
Kerry Emanuel, an atmospheric science professor at MIT said, “If you look at long-term effects of hurricanes on society, the impacts are more about water than wind. Harvey is an example of how vulnerable modern society is to rainstorms as the climate warms. It’s solid physics.”
Liz Bowman, the spokeswoman for the Environmental Protection Agency, said the organization swiftly rejected the notion in light of the ongoing tragedy. “EPA is focused on the safety of those affected by Hurricane Harvey and providing emergency response support – not engaging in attempts to politicize an ongoing tragedy,” Bowman said.
It’s upsetting to see that liberals have taken their efforts to politicize everything to include natural disasters and their victims. Instead of attempting to advance a political agenda, make witty commentary, or poke fun at the many thousands of individuals struggling to survive, perhaps they should make an effort to recognize the tragedy and be respectful of those involved.