Lately, it seems, everyone is up in arms about cartoons. Muslims around the world have been rioting over a few Muhammad cartoons. Newspapers have suddenly started reporting on when people die in cartoons, such as the New York Post, which recently ran a story headlined "Three Die in Cartoon Violence." In one of the more puzzling proposals in his State of the Union address, President Bush called for legislation outlawing "human-animal hybrids" in cartoons, which would make Jessica Rabbit in Who Framed Roger Rabbit illegal. And now, apparently following Bush's lead, China has banned human-animal hybrid cartoons from TV. Even Tom Cruise has gotten into the act, censoring an episode of South Park in Great Britain that implied he was a Scientologist.
Why all the focus now on the menace of cartoons? When the Rev. James Dobson revealed that Spongebob Squarepants is gay, I was certainly troubled by that. While I don't mind Bugs Bunny having a little fun crossdressing on occasion, an out-and-out gay cartoon character is a bit worrisome and I am glad he let parents know about this. However, I think we are spending entirely too much time worrying about cartoons. In cartoons when people get hit by an anvil or get run over by an Acme delivery truck they often get up again. That doesn't usually happen in real life. Maybe we should stop worrying so much about cartoon characters and start paying more attention to real people.
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