Id like to show my support for the fantastic guys out in SA by re-posting this.It was some of these cartoonist that helped make me believe I too could do it, and taught me the true meaning of integrity.
BY JOHN CURTIS
South Africa’s top editorial cartoonists have banded together to protest against the government’s intended press restrictions.
In rejecting the proposed Protection of Information Bill and Media Tribunal, they have warned that these restrictions will erode the right to freedom of expression achieved by the country’s hard fought struggle for democracy.
The cartoonists' declaration is presented in an open petition to the government and any others that might challenge this right. It condemns all politically and religiously motivated threats against the media, and also objects “in the strongest of terms to all acts of intimidation being waged against the media in general, and cartoonists in particular.”
The 29 signatories represent a veritable who’s who in South African cartooning, including the creators of four of the country’s most syndicated newspaper strips . Between them, their work is published in almost every major newspaper in the country. The petition was initiated by Africartoons.com.
Recent threats to media freedom have fired up the country's cartoonists to produce powerful statements against such interference, many drawing parallels with the apartheid regime's propensity for such behaviour. Others have warned that these threats may be the beginning of the end of our miracle democracy.
During this month Africartoons will feature a collection of cartoons on the subject of the free press (and threats to it) which can be viewed via the "Free Press Cartoons" link on the homepage. More cartoons will be added to this collection as the story unfolds, and veteran cartoonists have been invited to contribute their apartheid era cartoons on the subject as a reminder of the implications of state press control. The best of these cartoons will be selected to form a narrative on the theme in an online exhibition to be hosted by the site in the near future.
The signatories of the petition (listed from Andy to Zapiro) are: Andy (Sunday Times), Brandan (Business Day, Rapport, Weekend Argus), Chip (Cape Argus), Dave Gomersall (Treknet), Deni Brown (Mama Taxi), Dov Fedler (Independent Newspapers), Dr Jack (Mail & Guardian, Noseweek, Pretoria News), F Esterhuyse (Beeld), Findlay (Sondag Son, Sunday Sun), Fred Mouton (Die Burger), Gavin Thomson (People’s Post, Mama Taxi, Treknet), Grogan (Cape Times), Jerm (The Times, Biggish Five), John Curtis (Africartoons.com), Mark Wiggett (The Herald, Weekend Post), Mgobhozi (The Star), Miles (Daily Dispatch), Mothowagae (City Press), Mynderd Vosloo (Beeld), Nanda Soobben (Post), ND Mazin (CCIBA), Qap’s Mngadi (Echo Witness, Isolezwe), Rico (Madam & Eve), Stephen Francis (Madam & Eve), Siwela (Africartoons), Stent (Noseweek), Stidy (The Witness), Yalo (Sowetan) and Zapiro (Mail & Guardian, Sunday Times, The Times).
The petition has been sent to all the signatories to forward to their respective newspapers, email to their contacts, and post on their websites, blogs, and facebook pages. Africartoon visitors are invited to join the campaign by doing the same. By clicking on the facebook button ('f share') beneath this story you can post it on your facebook page (as you can do with any of the cartoons on this site). You can also tweet it just as easily if you have a twitter account. And a high resolution version of the petition can be made available for printing purposes as an A4 (1MB) advert or flyers, and A3 poster (2MB) on request via the website's contact form.
Posted on Aug 12, 2010 by Africartoon
I would like to make public Apology to Miss H Wood of womanchester for the gratuitous use of the abbreviation 'Lol' in written discourse with said person.I am very sorry and was on holiday at the time it happened.
Miss H Wood on the phone to the local taxi service, ordering a cab to take her to the lavatory.
Cliff Hanley was out tonight at the Bristol peace vigil in front of the Hippodrome but as it was tea time and the baby was kicking off so I only managed to grab only a quick word.
When the story broke about the violent and unprovoked attack in international waters on the Aid convoy, I saw that some Bristolians were unaccounted for and in a very mummsy way, I became very concerned about their wellbeing.
Tonight I was lucky enough to stop and ascertain they were ok and I managed to not ask Cliff if he was wearing a vest
The first thing I put to him was the reports from the Israelis that there were arms on board held by the Palestine campaigners and how the Israelis insist that they came under fire.
The only incident involving arms he watched was when one of the Palestine campaigners managed to disarmed a solder chaotically firing at people, and how the campaigner managed to empty the gun chamber of its bullets on to the deck and threw the gun overboard.
He insisted they were no arms on the convoy, and could give no explanation for the Israeli account. I speculated that the Israelis had in the chaos accidently shot one of their own ‘Friendly fire’ style; He just smiled and shrugged at this. But he insisted that there was, under no circumstances, any fire from the convoy. He described how the army had arrived by sea and air already firing their guns indiscriminately before even boarding the ship.
Then I’m afraid I asked him did he know any of the victims of the Israeli shooting,
It was the kind of question I probably tell my kids off for asking someone,
He replied that he did, and described a big bear of a man he got to know, who had a overwhelming sense of Turkish hospitality and had insisting on trying to feed Cliff up during the voyage, (Cliff having the classic Scots wiry build)
It is obvious that Cliff is a reserved man, and when talking of his friend who was murdered, it’s only the 100 yard stare that speaks of the horror of what he has just witnessed. He described a decent man killed trying to bring humanitarian aid to people in the biggest prison camp in the world.
I asked Cliff if he will try to return to Gaza.
He looked at me like I asked a stupid question; I look him in the eye and know that this man’s resolve to help the people of Gaza has only become stronger because of what he’s seen.
As I walk away my daughter asks me “Mummy what dose ‘money where your mouth means?”
She’s herd me just say it to the wiry scot in the Palestinian scarf.
“But why would you put money in your mouth ...Mummy?”
“It's not something many people do sweetheart”
However, I have to say, he looks like he could do with a good feeding up and if I do bump into him again; I will have to insist on buying him some cake.
But then again being wiry make less of a target...
For some journalism on this and not the plump mummsy report see the post interview hear:
‘Make Your Mark’ Here is inviting people local to Bristol and the South West to submit self-portraits for a huge mosaic that will be unveiled on College Green on 1st June. The pictures will make up the face of 5-year-old Enid from Uganda, who represents the 72 million children around the world who do not attend school because of poverty.
The deadline is on Monday 17th May, so get it sorted and sent, and your self portrait will join the likes of Darth Vader's and comedian Stephen Merchants', go on go on go on go on go on go on.....
It appears someone’s gone to the trouble of looking at a my jiggling animated GIF and pulled it from there site, Link to my website of gif http://www.bluelou.net/miliband%27s.html Thank you to who ever reported me (Twat)
One thing you should never never do is to give one side of the Northern Irish community more power then the other. It unsettles people and makes them feel like they have nipped into the Tardis for the 1970s.
Obsession with history bedevils Irish society, some of the oldest fortified walls still in use can be found in this country, were other countries have found ways of doing away with their historical battlements, these are still working objects in the static dead weight of a quarrel.
The Tory pact with the DUP and the standing of joint candidates in the 2010 election gives the political equivalent of a nasty burp from stupid pre-agreement days.
Where Paisley senior had his leg felt by Margaret Thatcher over afternoon teas and some Mr. Kipling in number ten, we saw the cosying-up of the DUP and the Tories.
Not since that bowing, unquestioning support of any bit of old tat that went for Thatcher’s pathological law-making in the House of Commons, do we really see the possible return and prospect of once again being arrested for a crate of empty milk bottles.
People’s houses actually being worth something for the first time, because of the cessation of the troubles, gave the less well-off more to lose if things went tits.
The economy has knocked the tooth loose; so it is another Tory government that will loosen still further the fragile peace, and more importantly, the budding cohesion between communities that has tentatively appeared.
But once-big men wish to be big again; and so Cameron is willing to sacrifice the chance of a generation not to witness violence return to the streets of NI.
For a extra bit of meat throughout the lobby.
Above the DUP MLA for South Antrim, Former DUP MP for South Antrim ..singing.
The question you have to ask your self now, in this state of flux in the news industry, and in this age of blogs and networking sites is
1. What is "the press" anymore and
2.Who is reading it apart from your friends?
3.Do the networking sites such as Facebook, Netmums, Fixmystreet and Mumsnet tell you about the home office having access to everything you have said, and actively monitors these sites?.
See: The BBC on Social network sites 'monitored'http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/7962631.stm
Gordon Brown has been masturbating furiously in a irritated manner for 7 minutes now, he has a semi, and is starting to redden and chafe.
David Cameron however has had 3 ejaculateions in as may minutes, undeterred by the shortness of interval he continues his 'Posh wank’ into a condom but remains steadfast in his self Pleasuring.
Anna Arrowsmith MP continues to is outlining her commitment to the people of Gravesham area regarding her policy’s on crime and tax cuts.The masturbation continues unabated.
It has been a difficult Maiden speech.
I am writing to you concerning the Amy Wootton Breastfeeding incident and have a couple of questions.
I believe you are the person who dealt with the situation according to your colleges over the phone on Monday.
I have met Amy Wotton twice, the week before the alleged incident, and the Friday afterwards as the worldwide media were broadcasting her story.
We - myself and a group of mothers who know each other through a mother’s internet forum - are pretty confused and distressed by the situation, and are amazed that what appeared to be normal articulate young women could be driven to fabricate a story such as this. She obviously has problems, no argument about that one.
But how did this extremely vulnerable individual become the centre of a global media storm?.
The evidence shows that she lied, and that is not acceptable. However this does pose a number of questions and issues around what has happened
1. Is it company policy to issues flowers and an apology to every complaint? Is it common to issue an apology before a inquiry?
2. Did the Evening Post contact you before or after Amy made the complaint?
3. Was the apology/flowers issued before or after the evening post contacted you?
4. Amy recounted several incidents that she did not officially complain about while using first bus. The gist of it was a feeling of general intimidation on the 54 from other passengers in regards to her breastfeeding and unpleasantness form first staff over a number of months to a year when she had mobility problems during pregnancy and her work as a careworker attempting to get clients on board with wheelchairs. It would seem that there was a build up of anger and resentment over along period of time.
5. In the drivers statement he says ‘He was aware of Amy breastfeeding’ and he was ’Laughing and joking with the passengers’ during journey. Is he is a known and regular driver on that journey?.
6. How would you describe first buses’ relationship with the Evening post:
Good, fair, ok, poor, or severed horses head at the bottom of a bed?
7.Will First Bus in Bristol perhaps look to addressing some of its deep systemic problems with a forum for bus users to work with First to put things right..
For example: Looking at a clearer complaint system i.e. A telephone number for complaints clearly displayed at stops and inside buses. The name of the driver clearly displayed as well.
Perhaps a system where customers are invited to rate the driver’s performance.
Addressing the quality of bus service in regard to postcode (poorer areas have a worse quality of service, old pram unfriendly buses etc). And join in the lobby to sort out the city’s crippled traffic system that makes bus driver’s job extremely difficult.
8.As a good will gesture, be one of the first companies in Bristol to display signs in there buses to the effect that it is illegal to stop a woman breast fed, in conjunction with one of the breastfeeding organisations when a clarification of the law happens.
I am a freelance political cartoonist and artist and currently I’m on maternity leave. I’m afraid it may sound flippant but the cartoonist in me wants to ask:
9. Does Amy have to give her flowers back?
I must state that I will be publishing the contents of this email. I will also be publishing the contents of any replay I receive from you. If I do not receive a reply, Ill put you down as a ‘No comment’.
Talking about the appalling bus service in Bristol is like talking about the weather for most people who live hear.
It must be an interesting job being the public Relations for First bus.
Thank you for your time.
Thank you for your email. Regarding Amy Wootten, this is a private matter between her and us and to that end we are not prepared to enter into correspondence about it with any other individuals.
In relation to our general customer service provision, should you wish to join our customer panel - to help influence policy in this area - you will find details of how to do so here: http://www.firstgroup.com/ukbus/southwest/bristol/customer_care/customer.php. Alternatively if you have suggestions regarding how we might improve customer relations then please feel free to write to us via our customer service team, details of whom you'll find here: http://www.firstgroup.com/ukbus/southwest/bristol/contact/bristol.php
Today First bus are saying that Amy has made it up, and that theres nothing on the bus CCTV to suggest it has happened. I reserve judgment until I have talked to Amy her self, I'm finding hard to believe she has made this up and feel she may of made a mistake about the day it happened(New parent sleep deprivation).Amy if your reading this, get in touch. If they are making it up, you need to stand up for your self.
Amy Wooton sits across from me looking longingly at her hot chocolate, loaded with melting marshmallows, it is slowly cooling in front of her on the cafe table. She is unable to drink it as she is discreetly nursing her Six week old baby.
Babies at this age have stomachs the size of walnuts, because of the magic that is breast milk, it is almost completely absorbed and they are ready for another feed, at this age a hour or two later.
The almost permanent fixture of infant to breast at this stage is enough to have you running howling for the nearest tin of formula, the broken sleep, discomfort and the just plain inconvenience of it.
Every now and again her mobile phone rings, she eyes it with amazement and waits until it rings off and listens to the voice-mail. In a soft Bristolian accent she tells us it is radio five live looking to interview her, and she's just been mentioned on 'This morning'. She is in all the national papers.
The last time we all met up, (a fortnightly event, where we all know each other through a mothers Internet forum) we were swapping stories of the horror that is the local bus service 'First bus'. A bit of an old chestnut, conversation wise. This week, Amy got a bit of a good one. She has been chucked of the bus for breastfeeding and accused of indecent exposure. She was threatened with the police if she didn't get off and dumped at the side of the road in the rain with her pram.
We in bristol have come to expect racism, discrimination and the exorbitant fares as the a norm of trying to get from A to B without a car. It is the first 'First bus 'experience.
Top of the list with 'First bus' is the racism.
Its how any one with a non-English accent is made to stand and 'pronounce' their destination before being let on. Something that I had to regular endure when I first moved to england and my Irish accent seem to be as misunderstood as a remote Chinese dialect.
It is a regular sight now, the Somalian in the hijab preforming the 'little Briton' weight watchers sketch. Its where even at the back of the bus you can clearly hear 'Return to the Center' being pronounced, over and over again until it reaches the right English inflection before boarding is allowed.
Then there's the aggression..
I once was on a bus going through the town center where the driver slowed the bus at the regular peace protest in-front of the hippodrome, he opened the doors of the bus and roared “Bomb the Bastards!” out of the open door at the open mouths of the peace protesters. He shuts the doors and drove off, making one of the very few non designated stops I've ever seen by one of these drivers make.
And then the madness... I was once one of the passengers on a bus that was abandoned in the middle of the road on a hot summer's day as the driver walked off screaming that they could 'F*** their job'. The local paper recently ran a story about a 'First bus' mounting the pavement and driving down it for a considerable distance to get around a road blockage.
I watched as one driver did his bit for euthanasia of the elderly as he jerkily accelerated when a little old lady, no where near finding some where to sit down, came spinning toward my pram and smacking her head into a pole just before she landed on my daughter. He just couldn't be bothered to hold on till she sat down safely.
She was full of apologizes and bleeding from the head, myself and other passengers helped her up. The driver looked bored. She wobbled back off the bus and weaved her way up the road. The bus took off and I shook my self out of my shocked stupor and jumped off at the next stop seriously concerned for her welfare (driver wouldn't stop unless at a designated stop) I searched but just couldn't see her, I had visions of her dieing behind a hedge somewhere, I was kicking my self that I should have got off with her, but I wanting to kick the driver even more.
Amy's job before she had her baby was a respite care worker. She had mentioned the week before that most of the drivers had been obstructive and abusive when ever she had attempted to get her clients wheelchairs on. One of the other women confirming this state of play in her experience of traveling by 'First bus' with her disabled child.
Political correctness never got on the bus in bristol to go mad. It splashed past its wheelchair in the rain, covering it in dirty water.
Funny how the trams project just disappeared into a dirge of local government wrangling, the most inept transport company got the gig to provide the bus service. It sometimes seems that the bus drivers are driven off the edge of reason because no one has the balls to sort out the chaos that is Bristol intercity traffic.
A militant pro-car lobby sabotaged any attempt at some kind of parking scheme
The car is given precedence over everything else here, city traders claimed it would effect them if restricted, perhaps they hope people will get out and buy something out of boredom because the traffic moves so slowly.
In some areas it can takes a ambulance 15 minutes to drive down a 150 meter road. No other traffic, just insane amounts of parked cars. They don't show that on casualty, Charley driving a ambulance knocking of wing mirrors at a five miles an hour, blue lights and siren going, while squeezing past nearly vertically parked cars.
No one really wants to drive buses in bristol, not for those wages, nor the conditions that see buses squeezing into the spaces the size of one car on in two-way traffic. You can see them up front, in the summer, in sweaty crawling traffic and obscenely over-parked roadsides and pavements, slowly turning mad, slowly becoming hateful of everything. The only entertainment is to pump the brakes and dream of gas chambers.
You don't have to be mad to work for 'First Bus' but it may help the process along.
Even class pervades the bus routes of Bristol. The richest area is serviced with the most accessible pram and wheelchair-friendly buses. Clifton has the showcase bus route, the buses that kneel down to welcome on board the the yummy mummy prams as they slum it for the day because the range rover's in the garage. Little information readouts telling you when the next bus is due in the bus shelters.
Then there's the poo buses, dirty, old and inaccessible. They service the proles. The mid to low income mothers in the rest of the city, who are less likely to have access to a cars can go hang, if your pram/buggy doesn't fold forget it, it's none of your stooping Clifton shiny-space buses for them, with bags of shopping, wriggling infants, trying to get back to the council estates, with a cost of a 10th of an average income support cheque blown on a return ticket, well its tough titty to you.
Woe betide you if you try to get your titties out to feed your screaming newborn infant.
Oh did I mention 'First ' just got done for over-charging and being the most expensive bus service in the UK?
So hear we get to the nub, or nip of the subject, the most surprising part of all this.
We (Bristolians) are not surprised. This quite softly spoken new mother sat in front of me was pushed just too far and decided, in her anger to go to the local paper. We are amazed that the rest of the country are scandalized by the obnoxiousness of the 'First bus' drivers, we have grown so used to.
As for breastfeeding, what can I say, you wouldn't do it if you didn't have to. Any woman who has been given the facts and has any intelligence to make a rational decision will attempt to breastfeed.
Many fail because of medical difficulty, mostly they fail because of lack of support despite all the health benefits to the infant that is usually ignored in the face of vague embarrassment.
The magic antibacterial qualities of breast milk is an uncommon fact, its description of being akin to 'White blood' in its incredible qualities as a perfect balance of fats and proteins for an infant. Exclusively breastfed babies on the whole hardly ever poo, and it doesn't usually smell that bad when they do. Formula babies honk like somethings gone waaaay bad.
It is made in breasts, those things so jealously guarded by society from the individuals they were developed for.
A million miles from the silicon-engorged sexualised status symbols, owned by men and traded on by women, is the innocent infant receiving perfect custom made clean nutrition and loving comfort.
The obsession based on a subconscious need for comfort and a yearning for the unconditional love they represent, would make any empty loveless and twisted individual react with sham scandalisation at someone getting, what they are clearly not.
And then of course there's the studies that have shown that breastfeeding can enhance the intelligence of the infant. That little head start that makes the IQ that little bit higher.
I look at Amy's baby, as Amy sits nursing her, as she is soldiers on exhausted and sore from the constant newborn feeding, and know that the beautiful little baby in her arms is in with a damn good chance of not ending up as a bus driver.
David seems to be mystified as to why his campaign is yet to capture the elusive womens vote.
We’ve had the ‘honorary sister’ at the sink and the mumsneting. Vaseline on the lenses of the ‘because your worth it’ campaign posters.
For Christ sake no ones mentioned his breasts.. Please, please don’t, there are advertising strategists everywhere.
Look there’s one inside the washing machine, EEKKKKKK!!!