Laurent Clark: Political cartoon misses the mark |

Laurent Clark: Political cartoon misses the mark

The Union’s July 28 political cartoon of a gold panner is unfortunate. The Confederate flag represents institutionalized oppression by an illegal government whose proponents brutalized a race of people.

The Gold Rush was a mass migration of people from all over the world. There was no institutionalized government to prevent abuse of the weaker by the stronger. Whites brutalized Indians. Indians brutalized whites, Hispanics and other Indians. Germans brutalized Irish who brutalized Chinese. Mormons brutalized non-Mormons and other Mormons. Mexicans brutalized “Texicans” who returned the favor when they became stronger.

Ultimately, the whites “won” because there were more of them and they were stronger.

Amid this “unfairness,” a sort of justice evolved, from Kangaroo Courts, ultimately to a Supreme Court, striving to protect the weaker from the stronger. We have evolved to a place where we tell the good and the bad histories of our ancestors. However, your cartoonist’s attempt to trash the image of an honest 49er trying to eke out a living on the edge of civilization, is hypocritical.

The “good” people of the gold rush behaved no differently than we would have in similar circumstances.

There are no perfect people … including, “cartoonists.”

Laurent Clark

Penn Valley

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