The two co-owners of The Missourian have quit the paper after its publisher — their father — published a syndicated political cartoon they found racist.
In a post titled “We Are Sorry,” sisters Susan Miller Warden and Jeanne Miller Wood explained that the cartoon — which shows a white woman being robbed by a black man who tells her it’s useless to call 911 because “we defunded the police” — was never run by them and was, in fact, published in Wednesday’s paper by their father, Bill Miller, Sr., without their knowledge. They postulate that it was hidden from them because he knew they’d fight it.
Bill Miller did not immediately return a request for comment.
“As co-owners we believe it was racist and in no circumstance should have been published. We apologize to our readers and our staff for the obvious pain and offense it caused. For the record, we abhor the sentiment and denounce ANY form of racism. Our core belief is that racism and inequity of any kind have no place in our society much less the editorial page of a newspaper,” they wrote.
They added they saw the cartoon at the same time as their readership and “were just as outraged and horrified as our staff and community.”
“Even more painful for us is the fact that this hits close to home because this is our father. Many families have been having these painful discussions in the privacy of their homes. We unfortunately have to have this debate in a more public way,” the women wrote before revealing they were resigning in protest because they don’t have the power to assure readers it won’t happen again.
They signed off, “Black lives matter.”
See the cartoon below:
The Missourian Newspaper in Washington, MO put this in their paper. I wish i could say I was surprised. Wow pic.twitter.com/bmvV4QETFN
— Coach Reed (@CoachReed314) June 10, 2020