How do you simplify complex issues? Increase the chances of your message being shared? Use a political cartoon.
Cartoons are powerful. They get people's attention and are more likely to be shared. Use cartoons to make your point in tweets, Facebook posts, emails and on websites.
"People want to be entertained. It makes them listen. People like things spoon-fed, honeyed and digestible, and humor is the ultimate sweetener." - Stanford Daily
Political Cartoons provides thousands of wonderful cartoons for just a few dollars each or an unlimited supply with a subscription.
Democracy Labs is offering nonprofits two grants worth $1,000 each for an annual subscription license to Political Cartoons. Simply email how you plans to use cartoons and an expert panel will choose the two winners by Sept 30.
Here are some of my favorite political cartoons spanning COVID disinformation, the Republican abortion ban, voter suppression, wealth inequality, Mitch McConnell and Facebook.
Why are political cartoons important?
"Political cartoons offer a brightly colored alternative to formal news reporting, providing light relief from the ever-increasingly gloomy political discourse. With the ability to distill news and opinion into a caricature, cartoons present accessible and instant commentary and analysis of current affairs.
The images can cast a powerful interpretation on the day’s news. They explain and explore stories in manners that articles cannot. More effective than writing or video, they capture the imitable human nature of their subjects in order to humanize the topic they depict. By combining humor with the latest political news, cartoonists can reinforce their messaging, focusing on the frequently ridiculous nature of stories." - Ellwood Atfield
Republican abortion ban
Facebook, FOX and more
Political humor in activism
Saul Alinsky in his book 'Rules for Radicals' summarized in the Citizen's Handbook explains. "Ridicule is man's most potent weapon. It's hard to counterattack ridicule, and it infuriates the opposition, which then reacts to your advantage."
"People want to be entertained — “to be” functioning as the operative words in the sentence. It makes them listen. People like things spoon-fed, honeyed and digestible, and humor is the ultimate sweetener. With a careful consideration for style, activists can put the content on the still-hot back burner to focus on the delivery. Activists who make a smart use of humor temper their scorching indictments with a lightness, with a promise to their audience that they are “only joking,” and that they only intend to entertain.
Convictions made jokingly are more difficult to counter. The nonviolent and engaging veins that run through humor activism make similar approaches effective. Jokes have a certain unifying power — one that does not necessarily have to inhibit action but can help persuade people on the fence about the issue. It also does the necessary work of portraying the activists themselves as a group people would like to associate with — funny and “everyday” sorts of people who nonetheless dedicate themselves to the issue at stake." - Stanford Daily