The Norman Transcript

July 9, 2013

Coal comic not so hot

The Norman Transcript

NORMAN — Editor, The Transcript:

I enjoy playing left and right on the opinion pages to offer readers perspective.  But I found The Transcript's political cartoon of the 4th of July showing Obama as a fireman hosing down a coal-loving Uncle Sam offensive, misleading and so biased I wonder why you would showcase it.

I got out my magnifying glass and managed to make out “Spartanburg” in the credit. New to me. You must have done some real searching. I assume Spartanburg to be a small town in coal country where polluting the air and water and destroying lives has been a tradition for generations. Or, I wondered, might it be entirely fictive, a clever construction of the coal lobby, propaganda lofted into the ether with material for papers less discerning than eager to fill space?

Coal, as you must know, is one of the most harmful industries to the environment, with a shameful record for safety (amazing that the artist had the nerve to add “jobs” to one of Uncle Sam's fizzled rockets). If ever there was a business that needed regulation, and plenty of it, it is coal.

I was further surprised that as an Oklahoma paper you would demean the Obama Administration's energy policy, which favors gas, Oklahoma being a gas state. (Another of the cartoon's rockets is titled “global competitiveness.” I suspect the gas industry would jump to dispute that one).

Obama also endorses green energy, long overdue, which will create far more jobs than coal, as well as transform our nation from a fading giant locked in the 19th century when coal was king into one in tune with a future demanding efficiency and productivity without poisoning the planet.