A Washington state newspaper is under heavy scrutiny after its cartoonist used the local tragedy of a murdered toddler to make a political statement about “America’s gun culture.”
Two-year-old Kaden Lum was fatally shot at a Kitsap County mobile home park last March by an unidentified gunman. His mother, who reportedly tried to shield him from the bullets, is left to mourn him and her roommate Heather Kelso, 29, who was also killed.
While families and the community try to recover from their loss, the Kitsap Sun decided to publish a cartoon depicting Kaden as an angel next to a devilish, gun-wielding Uncle Sam.
The cartoon was published last week and sparked fury in Kaden’s grandfather, Jason Trammell.
“I feel that the cartoonist used my grandson as a 2-year-old in his cartoon to push their political agenda for the shock effect, and I think that’s deplorable,” Trammell said.
Trammell wants to see veteran cartoonist Milt Priggee and his editor David Nelson lose their jobs, reported KATU News.
After Trammell and Nelson met face to face, Nelson wrote an Op Ed apologizing to the victim’s family and made the excuse that the cartoonist experienced his own incident with a gun at 2-years-old.
The apology meant little to Trammell.
“By the nature of what he wrote, that implies to me that he knew this crossed the line and he chose to put it in print,” Trammell told KATU. “Failure in judgment big time.”
Trammell wants to make an example of Nelson and Priggee so that this kind of abuse doesn’t continue.
“I want to do whatever I can to make sure this doesn’t happen to another family, that they have to go through,” he said. “It’s bad enough to lose a loved one, but to put up with political garbage like this – it’s uncalled for.”
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