Little Tart loves it all…most of the time

9 out of 10 Star-Bellied Sneetches think these cartoons are racist.

Posted on: July 8, 2007

War Bonds

    It is always a little hard to know how to take racist statements and images made by beloved cultural figures. Take for instance these WWII political cartoons by socialist illustrator Dr. Seuss or the oft mentioned racism of Walt Disney . Should we hold these men and women responsible for their bigotries or should we accept them as a result of their time and place? I have always been a cultural relativist, but sometimes it feels like there is no real excuse for educated individuals in the 1940s to believe what they believed! What do you think? Were these Seussian images needed for the war effort or should we put aside our “Horton Hears a Who” in protest?


5 Responses to "9 out of 10 Star-Bellied Sneetches think these cartoons are racist."

[…] Racist WWII Cartoons by Dr. Seuss (tags: weird weaponry) […]

Well to whoever made that Seuss link, ignorance is the main cause of racism:

1: “A pretty straightforward racial caricature of a Japanese person”
2: ” If we don’t win the war, an ugly racial caricature of a Japanese man will be carved on Mt. Rushmore”
3: “More of Seuss’ slant-eyed Jap character”

He probably shouldn’t be posting stuff like this until he learns a little about Emperor Hirohito. Because that’s who it is supposed to be, not a “racial caricature of a random Japanese person”
I’m not even debating whether the cartoons are racist or not, but jeez this is the type of stuff that chips away at the credibility of progressive thought

Bootis, I agree. There is a difference between an ugly cariacture of a political leader and of a whole “race” of people. That being said, Seuss did draw that ugly (in the social/racial sense) comic strip of the “japs” being give expolsives while happily smiling. Thats not a political jab at an enemy, thats a jab at a whole race. NOT COOL!

I agree that strip is in bad taste, but I also believe that seus’s method of representing japanese people is making each one a version of his hirohito, much like his representation of every german person is a version of his hitler. I do believe the jab is country specific and not racial. Factoring in the magnitude of the events taking place at the time, while the internment was excessive overkill, questioning the loyalty of immigrants from an attacking country during a world war was an inevitability and just another reason why everyone loses in a war (of course coralling all wasn’t a necessity, but it’s just a shitty situation, do nothing at all, and of course there is going to be a risk of treason going down, do it how they did and its a terrible abuse of human rights. There is no correct solution). It sounds cliche but World Wars make things very messed up, so Seuss gets a pass in my book, especially considering his strong views and efforts against racial prejudice

I’d have to agree

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