Monday, September 5, 2016

Ann Telnaes


by Arnie Fenner

Since it's Labor Day, I thought we could all just sort of sit back and watch some videos featuring the Pulitzer Prize-winning editorial cartoonist Ann Telnaes, whom I mentioned briefly in my "Politically Speaking" piece several weeks back. Considering some of the content, they're not exactly a relaxing way to spend a holiday, but interesting and thoughtful they definitely are.

Of course some of the things Ann Telnaes draws are controversial; of course her work sometimes elicits absolutely horrific responses from dullards. But the great thing is that, like so many of the best editorial cartoonists throughout history, she's not intimidated by threats and name calling: she keeps going. She keeps drawing.

Art is an expression of intellect and that expression often tends to scare and anger cranks, cretins, and crooks. When a dictator takes power, their first acts are to censor and control the press and to demonize (and often jail or murder) doctors, lawyers, teachers, writers, and, yes,  cartoonists. The "intellectuals" who encourage people to think and question are dangerous to despots. There's an old saying: The one who commits evil shuns the light. Ann Telnaes' job is to shine a light on those eager to avoid it—and she does so with brilliance and bravery.

Each video is pretty fascinating and Ann (who originally went to school to be an animator) even shows how she creates the GIFs for The Washington Post's website. So open a beer or pour a glass of wine and enjoy.






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