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Kumbaya This, America

Joel Pett is the Pulitzer Prize-winning editorial cartoonist of the Lexington Herald-Leader. His work also appears in USA Today. E-mail: jpett@herald-leader.com.

In the postelection spin cycle, there was near unanimity for unity. From all corners of punditdom came the corrective wisdom that what America needs now is a good 5-cent peace pipe, that the blazing reds and brassy blues need to blend and soften into some kind of middle tone. (But not purple, because that evokes Kerry’s hearts and Cheney’s prose.)

To cartoonists, the notion of one nation unpolarized looks good on paper, but not our papers. No such thing as indivisible ink. We’re right-handed or left-handed, but not namby-pambidextrous. This just isn’t much of a medium for mediating, so if the sensible center is the solution, we’ll continue to be part of the problem. We’re dividers, not uniters. And we’re pretty much all in agreement on that.


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