Offensive art form of free expression

In the letter to the editor ‘Daily Cougar comic detrimental to gender equality’ (Opinion, April 23) Megan Walter states ‘art is not neutral, and it reflects the artist’s view of the world.’ Truer words have not been spoken. As such, then, I must recognize it as a personal reflection and not as an affront to my individual mindset.

The letter, addressing The Daily Cougar comic Man Law, mentions ‘oppression’ more than once. I find that difficult to swallow, since oppression is defined as the exercise of authority or power in a burdensome, cruel or unjust manner. Those criteria are certainly not met with this three-frame comic strip. At worst, you could only call it ‘offensive to some people.’

You can find shocking art everywhere. On any given day someone is offended by a painting, sculpture or song lyrics. Often such art is even created with that edge in mind, so long as the main reflection is still served. Even art based on, say, an inner burning hatred, unwarranted or not, is sacred. I have the right to speak out against it if I want, sure, just as much as I have the right to turn the station. What I don’t have is the right to try to define societal boundaries based on it.

The Man Law comic does not pass laws granting men the right to beat their wives. It does not dictate to me anything at all about my life or how to live it. It is a perspective, and while it may be foreign to you, or even me, it doesn’t grant me the right to have it shut down. I don’t agree with supremacist groups, but until they actually do something tangible against the law, I have no recourse. And that is not unfortunate … it is the freedom to have a perspective.

Either deal with it or get offended, but I have never mistreated a woman in my life, and I don’t plan to start just because I find the comic entertaining from time to time.

Leave a Comment