The artist who caused indignation with his racist cartoon about the deadly measles measles epidemic of Samoa apologizes after having initially defended his work
- The island of Samoa in the Pacific is suffering from a deadly measles epidemic
- The nation has declared a state emergency with 55 deaths – mostly children
- The Otago Daily Times published a cartoon Tuesday with a reference to the crisis
- An abundance of responses online threw the cartoon as racist and insensitive
The artist who caused widespread indignation with his cartoon about the measles measles epidemic of Samoa, apologized and said it was meant to be a & lighthearted joke & # 39 ;.
Garrick Tremain's cartoon, printed in the Otago Daily Times on Tuesday, shows two white middle-aged women walking out of a travel agency.
The caption to the cartoon reads: & # 39; I asked & # 39; & # 39; What are the least popular places at the moment? & # 39; & # 39; She said & # 39; & # 39; those who pick people up in Samoa & # 39; & # 39;. & # 39;
Many people thought it was racist and insensitive because Samoa has just declared an emergency after a measles epidemic has caused 55 deaths across the country – of which 50 are children under five years old.
Mr. Tremain apologized for insulting people with his work on Wednesday morning after he was put online.
He said it should not have been submitted for publication and gave his own & # 39; lack of judgment & # 39; debt.
Earlier in the day, however, he supported his work and claimed that people missed the joke.
A cartoon about the Samoan measles epidemic (photo) has been slammed as insensitive
Garrick Tremain apologized (photo) after stirring up indignation with his cartoon about Samoa
& # 39; I see nothing wrong with the cartoon. It no longer causes deaths, it doesn't laugh at deaths, it laughs at a stupid misunderstanding by a travel agent who is talking to someone, & he said Radio New Zealand.
& # 39; Once you've read the cartoon, the basis is a travel agency that takes the wrong end of the stick and makes a stupid comment.
& # 39; In my opinion, it does not shed light on the tragedy. & # 39;
He said the timing of the cartoon to be published was poor because he did not know that the newspaper was full of stories about the epidemic.
The Otago Daily Times published an apology for the cartoon on Tuesday afternoon.
& # 39; Today the Otago Daily Times published a cartoon with reference to the measles crisis in Samoa. The content and timing of the cartoon were insensitive and we apologize for publishing & # 39 ;, is the apology.
Samoan health officials announced on Tuesday that 3,881 people have now contracted the preventable disease during the deadly outbreak.
Tragic stories stem from the Polynesian nation.
Radio NZ reports that a couple have lost three children; a three-year-old boy who was released from the hospital, and twins of 18 months – with the mother next to their grave outside her house.
A state emergency has been announced that includes compulsory vaccination (photo)
The vast majority of the outbreak occurred on the island of Upolu, known for its white sandy beaches
Samoa has been flooded with help and support since the outbreak, with medical professionals from Australia and New Zealand working to have children vaccinated.
As part of the state emergency declared by the Prime Minister of Samoa, compulsory vaccination is underway.
Somo police confirmed on Monday that they had interrogated two people who claimed they were undermining the vaccination order.
& # 39; It is claimed that the two had attempted to undermine mass vaccination through social media messages and by promoting alternative treatments. & # 39; a statement from the Somo government.
& # 39; Both men were interviewed on Saturday and received strong warnings. The police and the Attorney General's office will follow the activities of these and other persons and continue their investigation. & # 39;
From November 20 to December 2, approximately 58,000 Samoans have been vaccinated.
The Samoan government's official calculated Tuesday's show 55 deaths due to the measles outbreak
The measles, mumps and rubella vaccine is very effective in preventing the disease (stock image)
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