The New York Times has been running a series of comic strips over the last few months from some top-notch comic creators, including Jillian Tamaki, Ben Passmore and more. Titled “The Diary Project,” the “weekly visual assignment series” features a recent “diary” entry by the artist. Many have focused on COVID-19, Black Lives Matter and other recent newsworthy events.
Artist Ronald Wimberly of Prince of Cats and LAAB fame created the final piece for the series, but says that the New York Times has decided not to run it.
On his Patreon, Wimberly has posted a message about what happened.
“The editor told me that, after much deliberation, after rigorous discussion that went to the top of editorial, the center image of the burning cop car was too much. …something about ‘editorializing violence,'” Wimberly writes. “They couldn’t see it running anywhere in the entire paper. I was told I could remove the central image of the comic and they’d run it, but I’ve decided not to and to just post it online, here.”
You can see the image for yourself above. Considering everything happen in the world right now, it’s surprising that the New York Times would reject an image of a burning police car — an image we’ve seen many times in the news over the last few months. But this is also the same paper that did run an editorial by Senator Tom Cotton calling for troops to be deployed against Black Lives Matter protestors.
I should also mention that Wimberly is the founder/publisher of LAAB, a broadsheet newspaper that’s “an ongoing experimental platform for creative work and critical discourse,” including comics, essays and more. He’s working with Beehive Books on another issue, which is currently up on Kickstarter. Go check it out.