Pro-police group protesting political cartoon


(Markus Spiske / Unsplash)

SCHENECTADY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Blue Lives Matter of Upstate NY is planning a rally at the Daily Gazette on Thursday at 5 p.m.

They say law enforcement supporters will hold a demonstration to condemn a political cartoon that ran in the paper on Monday. A release from the group calls the four-panel comic strip—created by artist Chris Britt and available through Creators Syndicate—”disgraceful.”

The group also says they will gather outraged citizens to show continued support for law enforcement professionals. They’re also advocating for a boycott of the Daily Gazette.

Reed Miles, the editor of the Daily Gazette, stands by the decision to run the strip. In a statement to NEWS10, he said:

The Daily Gazette stands by its publication on Aug. 31 of an editorial cartoon closely based on the police shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha, Wisconsin.

We’re sorry that some readers were upset by the cartoon, but we feel it was a valid commentary.

Communities across the nation are having a moment of reckoning about racial injustice and numerous related issues. The recent shootings in Wisconsin — and, more importantly, the aftermath — are part of that reckoning.

It is not our goal to upset people or to disparage good police officers or those who support them, but to reflect what some in our community are feeling.

First and foremost, the Opinion Page is just what its name suggests — a page of opinions. We feel strongly about our commitment to publishing a wide array of viewpoints on all kinds of matters, locally, nationally, and internationally. This includes the editorials, the op-ed columns, the letters to the editor, and the political cartoons.

We’ve been criticized before for publishing cartoons with a point of view more favorable to police.

We understand that the views expressed or the manner in which they are expressed may be off-putting to some readers. But we do our best to allow everyone an opportunity to have their say.

Reed Miles
The Daily Gazette

Britt’s comic, available at the link above and dated August 26, depicts an officer shooting a Black person in the back while saying “You have the right to remain silent.” This is not the first time one of his images, which are syndicated by many different news outlets, drummed up controversy. Responding to backlash on another comic handling race and policing in 2014, he said: “Editorial cartoons are not meant to be fair and they cannot hurt you.”

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