The new Republican tax plan takes away the deduction for state income taxes, which will hit the high-tax blue states hardest. The red states that voted for Trump are the federal welfare cases.
This cartoon features very blue California and very red Tennessee, two great examples of blue-donor and red-dependent states. I drew this one as a local cartoon for the weekly Nashville Scene when I was living in Nashville and I updated it a bit to apply to the issue today. Things don’t change much.
If this was an issue of fairness, the income tax should be reduced in hight-tax donor states and increased in low-tax dependent states. Of-course this is not an issue of fairness. The red states voted for Trump and now it is time for them to get some payback, at the expense of the Hillary states.
On Sunday, for Fathers Day and my birthday, my wife took me to the Creation Museum in Kentucky, outside of Cincinnati. I expected this to be a strange excursion into a foreign culture, and it was, but one I was prepared for after living in Tennessee for a couple of years. That’s me below with an exhibit.
This is a kids’ museum with lots of animated, life-size dinosaurs accompanied by exhibits explaining how the theory of evolution is wrong, the Bible is right, and dinosaurs are not so many years old after all. There are zip-line adventures through the lovely grounds, an ambitious petting zoo, and lots of shows. It is a place to bring the kids. I heard the same conversation everywhere in the museum as parents explained to their kids, “your teachers lie to you” and “don’t believe what they tell you in school.”
The photo below shows an exhibit where cave-kids are playing alongside the dinosaurs, much like in The Flintstones. It was explained that, in the beginning, animals were all vegetarians and everyone got along with the animals. It was only after Eve ate the forbidden fruit (depicted as berries) that the dinosaurs and other animals starting eating meat and getting surly.
Many of the exhibits are organized as rebuttals to science, contrasting man’s “theories” with God’s truth, and offering alternative explanations to rebut popular misconceptions – like the notion that Earth’s geology formed over millions of years, or that canyons are carved out by rivers. One recurring theme is the refutation of the scientific method, since the Bible gives us the truth as a starting point and the truth is not to be refuted. We learned that “natural selection” is OK, but “evolution” is wrong, a distinction that they seem to think is very important.
There is a lot of space devoted to the mechanics of Noah’s Ark, with descriptions of how the animals all fit into the ark and how they were probably cared for and fed while on the ark (for example, all the animals were likely young, so they would be small and easy to manage). There was a giant replica of a portion of the ark, and lots of talking, animatronic Bible characters. Methuselah was particularly chatty. There also was a lot of space devoted to how long these characters lived and how Adam and Eve’s kids had sex with each other, and why that was no problem. Different times. The museum also had a nice looking mural of the Skopes Monkey Trial from 1925 – the good old days when the government in Tennessee understood that evolution was a sham.
An interesting part of the museum was styled to look like an urban ghetto, with graffiti on brick walls; a heading on the entryway says “Scripture Abandoned in the Culture Leads to Relative Morality, Hopelessness and Meaninglessness.” Much like the attendees at the museum, the urban area featured no minorities. Peering through the broken windows on a blighted building there were videos of middle class white folks doing terrible things, like discussing how they were considering having an abortion. This was the chamber of horrors for the Creation Museum.
My math teacher wife tells me that her science teacher friends in Nashville get lots of blowback from students who call them liars. She said the museum made her sad. There is a big sign on the front door of the museum warning that anyone who acts disrespectfully, or who wears a t-shirt with a disrespectful message, will be kicked out. This is no place to argue. The docents seem hardened by many encounters with disrespectful visitors in the past; they have a stern attitude until they discern that the person they are talking to isn’t arguing, then they open up and are quite friendly. I didn’t test getting on their wrong side.
The museum has nice pizza, movies with impressive special effects, and a cool array of zip-line adventures. Also, as a father visiting on Father’s Day, my admission was free!
That’s me at the entrance with a nice looking dinosaur. Kids love dinosaurs. At the Creation Museum dinosaurs introduce kids to God and science – the museum hosts Summer science camps for kids, where “Science meets Truth,” encouraging kids to enter STEM careers. God help us.
What conservative Republicans have in common is an insatiable passion for regulating all things sexual. That’s the Tennessee flag at the right. The story behind the flag is fascinating. In the 1800’s Tennessee hired a graphic designer to make a new flag. The three stars in the center stand for Western, Middle and Eastern Tennessee. The stripe at the right means nothing – the designer just thought it made the flag look better. Gotta love history.
I responded to a request from National Cartoonists Society (NCS) president Bill Morrison, to do a drawing thanking the city of Memphis for their support of the upcoming NCS convention. The original will be sold at a fundraising auction. Bill sent cartoonists a list of “Memphis stuff” including the pyramid, the Memphis skyline, Elvis, fried chicken and craft beer. I’m more drawn to the old, fat Elvis – I wonder why.
Watch me draw this one in real time in the video below. I drew two cartoons in this video, and this Youtube link is queued to start when I start drawing Elvis.
This cartoon about grouchy, California-bashing, government-dependent Tennessee conservatives marks the end of my Summer stint as a local cartoonist for the alternative-weekly Nashville Scene newspaper. I’m back to drawing national/world cartoons again. Thanks to my local fans in this little blue spot in very red Tennessee!
My new local, altie-newspaper, Nashville Scene cartoon is about city planning. The “NashvilleNext” plan has been in the works for a long time, and it is pretty good, placing new, high density developments in appropriate high traffic corridors (I know, you’re falling asleep). The problem is that Nashville is booming and developers are pushing to put their developments anywhere they can make a buck (like next door to me). Our pro-growth Metropolitan Planning Commission likes to let developers do whatever they want, and those developers, with their deep pockets, are hard to resist.
Here’s my latest local, altie-newspaper cartoon for the Nashville Scene. Nashville is called the “buckle of the Bible Belt” because the place is full of colossal, mega-churches and giant church corporate headquarters. The scale of these churches is stunning. I’m from California where people don’t talk to each other as often as chatty Tennesseans. Often, the first thing I hear in a conversation with a neighbor, or someone I don’t know, is “where do you go to church?”
This is my cartoon on the Tennessee shooting tragedy. I didn’t think I could do anything more than the flowers and flags I’m seeing on the news, so I went with flags at half mast. This is probably a local cartoon, since many readers around the country won’t know the Tennessee flag, still, it is a local tragedy deserving of a local cartoon.
This reminds us that Tennessee is part of a big, ugly world.