A Hoot! for Hoffman; a Howl! for the Cartoon.

It’s rare to find a story that is both a Hoot and a Howl, but I found one in the Daily News.

The good news is Rich Hoffman wrote a good column about Tiger Woods’ decision to return to golf at the Masters Tournament next month. The bad news is that attached to this pretty reasonable column is a pretty bad cartoon by an artist with the McClatchy/ Tribune news service.

What I liked about Hoffman’s column was that it talked about the Two Tigers and how both of them will be protected and protected well at the Masters. Hoffman breaks down the hyper-structure that the tournament is organized under, how that will benefit Woods as he tries to simply play golf, and how tournament officials will try to make sure that the focus is on Woods as golfer, not Woods as Human, something that hasn’t happened much lately.

But while Hoffman knows that tournament officials will keep the folks at TMZ at bay, he also says that the Golf Writing establishment will probably touch on Woods’ marital issue. The difference will be that they will do it professionally and probably as an afterthought after talking about the golf game.

That’s enough about the Hoot.

Now here’s the Howl.

The McClatchy/ Tribune (MCT) cartoon accompanying the story hit me in the wrong way so hard that it probably broke a rib. I understand that Woods has put himself in the position that he stands in now, a position that practically begs for ridicule, but I think that MCT went just a tad too far.

I understand that editorial cartoons are supposed to be exaggerations of whomever is being illustrated, but when you consider Tiger Woods’ famous declaration of “Cablanasian”-ness, this cartoon goes a bit beyond.

The outsized lips and large head in this cartoon reminded me of the kinds of illustrations I’ve seen in Ku Klux Klan newsletters. It’s every bad stereotype of what black men look like superimposed on the face of someone who would probably sue you if you called him black.

And this is without even going into the text, which I admit was funny in spots, but not funny enough to take my focus off of the picture.

There’s funny, and then there’s unfunny. MCT’s cartoon was grossly unfunny to me.

– Denise Clay

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