Monday, July 14, 2008
At least they're not ripping off "Ziggy" anymore
So this is The New Yorker cover that's getting everyone all heated. The cover is supposed to be a satire of some of the harshest rumors that have swirled around the Obama campaign, including that he's a "secret" Muslim, that he's anti-American, and that his wife is a radical leftist. The Obama campaign is, understandably, not too pleased. They have enough actual attacks to deal with without having to see this image on the cover of an influential magazine.
Critics of the cover say that it only re-enforces these rumors and that it will be taken the wrong way by people who might not understand that it's satirical. But I can't imagine this cover actually having an effect on anything.
People who read The New Yorker are for the most part liberal Democrats. They know that it's intentionally over the top satire, and it won't matter. The people who actually believe Obama's some kind of mole for al Qaeda are going to continue not supporting him and being mad. The Obama supporters who find it offensive are going to rally around this as another unfair attack on Obama and will ratchet up their support. Any random, undecided voter who sees the cover on CNN isn't going to let something that's clearly satire affect their vote. If anything, the cover shows how ridiculous the idea of letting a rumor decide your vote truly is.
Gas prices are ridiculous. People are losing their homes. We're still in Iraq. People have opinions on these things, and these are the things that will ultimately decide the election. Not a magazine cover.