A veteran cartoonist from a newspaper publication gets fired after one single reader from a big company called his work offensive.
Rick Friday, 56, lost his job as a cartoonist after the cartoon he created got him into trouble.The cartoon features two farmers, in overalls and skewed baseball caps, talking to each other at a fence.
“I wish there was more profit in farming,” one farmer said.
“There is. In year 2015 the C.E.O.s of Monsanto, DuPont Pioneer and John Deere combined made more money than 2,129 Iowa farmers,” the other replied.
After the cartoon was published, Friday said he was informed in an email from an editor that the cartoon he created would be his last for Farm News because a seed company had withdrawn its advertising in protest to what the cartoon implied.
Friday is a self-taught artist who picked up a No. 2 pencil when he was still a child living on a 300-acre livestock and grains farm in Lorimor, Iowa. During his childhood, he sold sketches to other children on the school bus in exchange for a nickel or a dime.
In a Facebook post, Friday published how he felt about the whole incident.
“Again, I fall hard in the best interest of large corporations. I am no longer the Editorial Cartoonist for Farm News due to the attached cartoon which was published yesterday. Apparently a large company affiliated with one of the corporations mentioned in the cartoon was insulted and cancelled their advertisement with the paper, thus, resulting in the reprimand of my editor and cancellation of It's Friday cartoons after 21 years of service and over 1090 published cartoons to over 24,000 households per week in 33 counties of Iowa.
I did my research and only submitted the facts in my cartoon.
That's okay, hopefully my children and my grandchildren will see that this last cartoon published by Farm News out of Fort Dodge, Iowa, will shine light on how fragile our rights to free speech and free press really are in the country.”