America’s defenders of the First Amendment have decided that a comic strip criticizing President Joe Biden’s transgender policies is more freedom of speech than Americans ought to be allowed to see.
The media conglomerate Gannett, which formerly used the slogan “A World of Different Voices Where Freedom Speaks,” recently banned the strip “Mallard Fillmore” from its publications, according to a report in The Washington Times.
Bruce Tinsley, who created the comic strip, said King Features, which syndicates his work, told him about the latest episode of America’s cancel culture at work
“It was a big shock. From what I’m hearing, it was unprecedented. My syndicate had never seen anything like it,” Tinsley said.
Tinsley said he was told by his contacts at King Features that “a decision was made at the [Gannett] corporate level, and they weren’t sure exactly why, except that they were sure it was about those two cartoons.”
The comics ran Feb. 19 and Feb. 20, and played off of Biden’s transgender policies.
“For too long, segregation sullied women’s sports … They were restricted to women! Thank goodness those dark days are over,” Tinsley had Biden saying in one strip.
In the second strip, Biden is made to say, “I hear what you, the American people, want me to do … kill fossil-fuel jobs … devalue Americans’ labor … and help more transgender athletes beat the *@!# out of biological females.”
Tinsley was surprised that these two strips touched such a nerve in the world of corporate journalism.
“But of all the cartoons — it vaguely centers on Biden’s doing that as his first executive order. There certainly was nothing derogatory about transgender people,” he said.
“It was just about what I see as a really unfair environment in sports.”
Tinsley is no stranger to controversy, and there have been instances when this or that publication would cancel “Mallard Fillmore” or temporarily stop running the comic due to anger over a particular strip chronicling the adventures of the politically conservative duck who reports on the news.
“So I’m used to this phenomenon, I’m just not used to it coming from the corporate level,” he said.
“I still don’t know how many. They said it had never happened before. it was all at once and it was a mandate from the corporation, not any individual editors’ decisions.”
Tinsley initially heard about the strip’s cancellation by Gannett from readers who said it was no longer in their newspaper.
The strip will remain in syndication, Tinsley said, perhaps with a new interest in mocking cancel culture.
“There are so many cartoons about this issue, about all the people getting canned — the Gina Carano thing and Dr. Seuss,” Tinsley said. “I know how it feels now.”
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.