NY Times Apologizes for India Cartoon After Reader Complaints of Racism

India made history recently by sending an orbiter on a Mars mission. And they managed to do it with less money than the total budget of the movie Mission to Mars.

The New York Times referenced this in a recent political cartoon, drawn by Heng Kim Song:

Well, as you can imagine, not everyone had a positive reaction to the cartoon. The Huffington Post had a headline calling it a “racist” comic, and the Twitter reactions were no better:





Well, yesterday, Times editorial page editor Andrew Rosenthal posted an apology to the Times‘ Facebook page. Here’s the apology in full:

A large number of readers have complained about a recent editorial cartoon in The International New York Times, about India’s foray into space exploration. The intent of the cartoonist, Heng Kim Song, was to highlight how space exploration is no longer the exclusive domain of rich, Western countries. Mr. Heng, who is based in Singapore, uses images and text – often in a provocative way – to make observations about international affairs. We apologize to readers who were offended by the choice of images in this cartoon. Mr. Heng was in no way trying to impugn India, its government or its citizens. We appreciate that readers have shared their feedback, which we welcome. — Andrew Rosenthal, Editorial Page Editor

[h/t BBC News]
[image via Heng Kim Song/New York Times, featured image via Haxorjoe]

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Follow Josh Feldman on Twitter: @feldmaniac

Tags: india, The New York Times