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This is why you should never compare black people to monkeys

On Tuesday, The Times published a cartoon by Jonathan Shapiro, better known as Zapiro, which depicted the NPA’s Shaun Abrahams as a monkey doing the bidding of Jacob Zuma, who controls him with a music box labelled “NPA”. Now, while Zapiro is known for courting controversy, this cartoon was a step too far. THE DAILY VOX TEAM explains why.

It is racist.

Allow Mr Mckaiser to explain the problems with Zapiro’s latest cartoon.

Eusebius FB

The Conversation offers a deep dive into the problematic history of comparing black people to monkeys. But here it is summarised: the association of black people with monkeys is traced to the start of the Europeans’ reign of plunder and terror in these parts. And it has consistently been used to denigrate black people as being less worthy of dignity than their white counterparts.

It is racist.

And it’s not funny. The point of depicting black people as monkeys relies on the idea of black people being inherently inferior to white people. And there’s nothing funny about that. Especially in a country where until 20-odd years ago, everyone with a skin tone darker than white, was systematically oppressed, and now continues to suffer through the legacies of that system. Depicting a black person as a monkey, and then expecting people to accept it as political commentary is some higher grade Penny Sparrowism.

It is racist.

And let’s not forget the reference to black people as monkeys in this manner does not happen in a vacuum. Just a few days ago, in the US, a professional basketball player described his opponents as “quick little monkeys”. He apologised, but there have also been spirited defences written on his behalf anyway.


Just in case anyone believes the depiction of black people as monkeys is benign, research has shown that it affects the behaviour of white people towards black people. “The association between ‘black’ and ‘ape’ left our white respondents more open to the possibility that police violence might, in fact, be justified,” Phillip Atiba Goff says of the findings of his research. 

It is racist.

Whilst Zapiro did try to defend himself by tweeting a link to this image when asked whether he has drawn white people as monkeys previously, it doesn’t suddenly make everything okay. The ugly, racist history behind the usage of the term means that it’s totally off limits for him. Simple as that. And if you are unable to describe public figures without resorting to racist caricatures, then, in the words of the Honourable Ndlozi, “Your politics is bankrupt.”

via GIPHY

 

19 Comments
  1. Graham Ragless says

    Can’t deny science it’s proven they have not long evolved from tree dwellers hence speed etc.

  2. Graham Ragless says

    That’s why they can’t live by white civilisations rules of not killin people or stealing they cars and have to live on welfare.

  3. Bonita says

    What insult? I like monkeys!

  4. ButWhatif TheyLookSimian says

    the way i feel about it, is if some loser who accidentally bumps into me and says “gtf out of my, b____…” and if he looks simian enough, i might call him a subhuman or monkey looking piece of trash. i’ve done it later in life and i really don’t care. i’ve said this to hispanics/whites who also are also dumb, ghetto / ratchet towards me without any good reason. i like to remind people like that that is what they get for being prejudice and rude to anyone walking their way in the first place. plus many do look simian and in an unattractive way. not all blacks/hispanics are like that though.

  5. Mz Jazzy says

    Wow it funny that whites have the nerve to say black are monkeys, yet whites people have The RH factor like monkeys and black people do not. Talk about projection.

    1. Jim says

      Lol, the problem isn’t the insult. It’s that black people see themselves as a type o ape, as does most of the left wing, so it’s accepted as common sense that it becomes an especially horrid insult to call a black person an ape. It’s the same reason you don’t call a retarded person retarded. It’s especially bigoted to pick on people for what they cannot help.

  6. Jimmy Kim says

    Never judge a book by it’s cover. Yes, African people resemble apes much more than other races, but this does not mean that because they look that way that are less intelligent, or beautiful.

    1. Joe Blow says

      But studies have in fact shown that on average, blacks ARE less intelligent, and while beauty may be in the eye of the beholder, there’s a good reason why you see more black men with white women than you do white men with black women. In fact, generally speaking, even within the black community the lighter your skin, the more you’re perceived as better looking.

  7. logan paul says

    white people get called racist thing and were even in slavery but when a white person calls a black person something racist it suddenly becomes a big problem it just dose not make fucking sense

  8. GusW says

    The thing is they do look like apes so all this posturing trying to pretend you don’t observe the obvious is absolutely ridiculous.

  9. TSBench says

    What I find curious about this entire dust-up with Barr (and, I must admit, I missed every second of every show ever broadcast with her in the cast) is that ‘ape’ HAS BEEN THE REPRESENTATIVE CARICATURE FOR SLANDERING EVERY IMMIGRANT GROUP IN THE UNITED STATES SINCE THE WAR OF 1812. Check out the cartoons in 19th century nativist pamphlets and, even mainstream, magazines and they are, by today’s standards, beyond-the-pale crude and vicious. Just when did blacks culturally-appropriate that which had been applied to Irish, Italians, Poles, Jews, Slavs, etc?  I know that don’t teach history in school anymore, but jeepers, not even in college? 

  10. Kathleen Richardson says

    the blacks weren’t immigrants. They were slaves. Dragged here kicking and screaming. Not considered human. Not considered a WHOLE white man. Think about that. It’s incredible that we are even discussing WHY calling a college-educated woman an APE would be a problem!

    1. Neil says

      That may be so for many of the ancestors but what is stopping them today from leaving America? Most groups who were held as captives in other countries couldn’t wait to flee as soon as they could. The fact that complaining Blacks don’t pick up and seek out new sights is the very reason why many people no longer take them seriously or even have compassion for them. I, being one of those people who is sick and tired. If you stay in America then do the legwork like everybody else or shut up. Rehashing your past is irrelevant.

      1. Joe Blow says

        Hear hear! Blacks have been free to leave since 1865 but CHOSE to stay. In fact, blacks (Africans) CONTINUE to come to the United States even today.

  11. Nathan Gospodarek says

    It seemed to me that she was’nt even meaning it in the way it was taken , if anything she seemed to just imply the lady was ugly and she didnt like her.
    This culteral over sensitivity has to end before were all stripped of all our rights in order to make everyone stay in their “comfortable place ” .
    Why on earth is it ok every where I go , for every other race to act racist to me because I am predominantly white ?
    I have never had a desire to own or enslave anyone so why is the past my problem ?

  12. Jimmy Kim says

    Africans enslaved their own people in Africa and sold them to European explorers/colonists. They were not captured and turned into slaves by ‘white’ people. Slavery was happening en mass long before the early European explorers arrived in Africa. https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=3&v=TtRaG_bokds

  13. Jon Michael Loyy says

    Mostly the problem is lack of education and improper upbringing. Or is it culture or nature that people act like animals and get branded as such? In any race, there are awesome good people….even uneducated but with good upbringing that are worthy of human kindness.

    Black people don’t want to be called monkeys (though evolutionists are convinced used to be one) and white people don’t want to be discriminated against past ideologies they had nothing to do with. Only within the Christian/Judeo message can the racial divides be put down to sleep.

  14. george sedton says

    Given another 200,000 years to evolve and catch up and we won’t call them apes anymore.

  15. sandile says

    Even white people evolved for monkeys becouse if u take look on european monkeys they look alike big ears and long nose .And they ar stupid coz as they live in Africa they call themselves african.They loose their idetinty very easy. To me they look like fake people like white chicken from the farm.And they dont have ubuntu they only think for themselves .

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