Rarely do I write letters to the editor of any publication. Nevertheless, a political cartoon appeared in the local newspaper, the Chillicothe, Missouri, Constitution-Tribune, requiring my response. The political cartoon depicted the Seven Dwarfs, Snow White‘s caregivers, marching off to take advantage of government handouts. They were singing, :”Hi ho, hi ho, off to get our government handouts” and the caption read, “Obama Voters!”
Well, that did not work for me. I took it as a personal insult and an assault on my personal integrity. This is what I wrote to the editor:
August 23, 2012
I want to avoid the word offended but I cannot help feeling disturbed by the political cartoon appearing in the C-T on August 22. The cartoon depicted those planning to vote for President Obama as a bunch of cartoon dwarfs marching off for a free hand out from the government. To suggest that those who will vote for the President and Senator McCaskill are shiftless freeloaders is part of the problems we are facing in this country now. Television ads, mailers, and now your political cartoon divide the electorate into two factions, conceited individualists (those voting Republican) and shiftless freeloaders (those voting for Democratic). Could we agree that voting is the essential act of citizenship and every voter goes to the polls with his and her country’s best interest at heart? I plan to vote for President Obama and Senator McCaskill. I am not a freeloader and I do not think of myself as a Walt Disney cartoon dwarf. Yes, I am on two government pensions and hope that they will not be taken from me by a selfishly motivated Congress, many of whom I fear want to reduce the middle class into poverty. I gave a major part of my adult life for those pensions and contributed to Medicare and the support I have gotten for health care from the Defense Department. My contribution to these government benefits is not an example of shiftlessness or thoughtless abuse of benefits. Please think about the people before you insult a major portion of the population with a thoughtless political cartoon.
The Rev. Dr. William F. Bellais
Major, US Army (Retired)