The cartoon, playing off the story of a chimp put down by Stamford, CT police officers after nearly killing a woman, features a gunned-down primate with the caption, "They’ll have to find someone else to write the next stimulus bill." Critics of the drawing have said cartoonist Sean Delonas is representing President Barack Obama with the animal, while the Post has said the drawing is a satirical play on a current event.
Sharpton called for a boycott of the newspaper on February 19 during a protest outside the Post’s Midtown headquarters. Another demonstration, this one leveraging an appearance by director Spike Lee, is planned for February 20, said Rachel Noerdlinger, VP of communications at the NAN. Sharpton has appeared on more than 15 TV programs and conducted numerous print interviews in the day since the cartoon ran, said Noerdlinger, who has organized media outreach for the effort. Future action, including a possible boycott of Post advertisers, will be determined after a February 19 planning meeting, she told PRWeek.
For its part, the Post has had no comment beyond its original statement.
Meanwhile, in other reaction to the cartoon, Ted Rall, president of the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists, said the drawing isn’t racist but a "cheap form of editorial cartooning." Michael Wolff, biographer of News Corp. Chairman and CEO Rupert Murdoch, bets that Post editor Col Allen will be fired shortly.
Here’s a Google News roundup of coverage of the controversy.