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Ozzie Newspaper Behind Serena Williams Cartoon Goes Big On Front Page
13 September 2018, 12:02 | Myron Mathis
Are there different standards for men and women in tennis? The USTA head says "yes"
An Australian newspaper defied worldwide criticism and allegations of racism on Wednesday when it reprinted a controversial cartoon on its front page depicting U.S. tennis star Serena Williams having a temper tantrum at the U.S. Open.
"The cartoon about Serena is about her poor behaviour on the day, not about race".
An Australian newspaper has defended its cartoon of Serena Williams by republishing it on its front page under the headline "Welcome to PC world".
Knight reportedly has disabled his Twitter account after his post of the cartoon attracted tens of thousands of comments, mostly critical.
"The racist cartoon of Serena Williams and Naomi Osaka by Mark Knight of the Herald Sun is repugnant on many levels", the NABJ said.
Serena Williams hugs Naomi Osaka, of Japan, after Osaka defeated Williams in the women's final of the U.S. Open tennis tournament, Saturday, Sept. 8, 2018, in NY.
Of course, one might ask if the cartoon had nothing to do with race, why he felt the need to draw Williams in a way that recalls the cartoons of Jack Johnson or cartoons of the Jim Crow south. Knight dismissed the criticism that his cartoon mimicked racist cartoons of the past, and defended his extremely exaggerated depiction of Serena's features.
Mr Mark Knight's caricature, in Melbourne'sHerald Sun on Monday, shows a fat-lipped Williams throwing a tantrum at the US Open.
However, the cartoon still drew widespread criticism, most notably online.
"I don't know how you draw an African-American person without making them look like an African-American person", he said.
Drawn by Fairfax illustrator David Pope, the cartoon replaces Williams with News' supremo Rupert Murdoch who, in turn, is now having a tantrum that his publication, the Herald Sun, isn't getting its way.
Speaking to ABC, Knight refused to apologise, saying, "I'm upset that people are offended, but I'm not going to take the cartoon down".
Meanwhile, former women's world number one player Billie Jean King said the decision to punish Williams is an example of the double standards at play in tennis.
'I'm happy to sit back and listen to people who say they feel that they have experienced racism in their lives and they see an element of that in it, ' she said. It exaggerates her features in the way that - remember the cartoons we used to see of John Howard with the eyebrows, Tony Abbott's ears.
"The Sept. 10 cartoon not only exudes racist, sexist caricatures of both women, but Williams' depiction is unnecessarily sambo-like", it said in a statement.
Australian cartoonist Paul Zanetti weighed in saying it was the job of cartoonists to call out bad behaviour and not fall prey to an increasingly politically correct culture.
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