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WaPo’s New Political Graphic

Warner Todd Houston’s May 13, 2007 post at NewsBusters points out the Washington Post’s new election coverage graphic. He writes,

It is a graphic of an elephant's and donkey's heads placed together to denote the two parties that seems vaguely obscene at first glance. There is nothing wrong with that concept, of course, as such a graphic idea has been made and remade hundreds of times since the mid 1800 and the birth of the GOP. But, the Post's graphic is curious in it's design. Here it is...

Now, take a casual look at it, or perhaps squint a bit at it. Doesn't it look like you are looking at a drawing of a donkey with it's rear end facing you, as if it is looking back at you over its haunches? Notice how the rear end is ACTUALLY the face of the elephant? Doesn't the trunk of the elephant look like the donkey's right, rear leg? Doesn't the curve of the ear of the elephant look like the donkey's tail? And the eye of the elephant is the donkey's.... well... not an "eye" exactly?

I wonder if the graphics guys at the Washington Post thought it might be funny to make the elephant's head the donkey's rear end? As a graphic artist myself, I cannot eliminate the possible symbolism, especially coming from the editorial position of the Post!

In any case, you look and you decide. As for me, I have already done so.

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