Serena Williams Cartoon Reprinted Despite Criticism for Racist Depiction

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistSeptember 12, 2018

Melbourne-based newspaper Herald Sun displays a controversial cartoon of Serena Williams that has been widely condemned as a racist depiction of the tennis great, in Melbourne, Australia, Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2018. The newspaper defended its cartoonist Mark Knight's depiction of Williams and is asserting the condemnation, which has come from all parts of the world, is driven by political correctness. (AP Photo)
Rod McGuirk/Associated Press

An Australian newspaper reprinted the cartoon featuring Serena Williams that has sparked criticism for a racist depiction of the tennis superstar.  

Per the Associated Press (h/t ESPN.com), The Herald Sun published an edited portion of the Williams drawing with the headline "Welcome to PC World."

"If the self-appointed censors of Mark Knight get their way on his Serena Williams cartoon, our new politically correct life will be very dull indeed," the front page of the paper says.

BBC Sport's Dan Walker tweeted out the original image of Williams that appeared in the paper Sunday:

Mark Knight, the artist who drew the original cartoon, defended the image by saying it had nothing to do with Williams' race. 

"I drew this cartoon Sunday night after seeing the US Open final, and seeing the world's best tennis player have a tantrum and thought that was interesting," he said in The Herald Sun. "The cartoon about Serena is about her poor behaviour on the day, not about race. The world has just gone crazy."

Many high-profile figures spoke up to express their anger about the image on Twitter:

During Saturday's U.S. Open final against Naomi Osaka, Williams was called for three violations by chair umpire Carlos Ramos after he issued her a warning when he determined her coach was making hand signals that constituted illegal coaching. 

"I'm here fighting for women's rights and for women's equality and for all kinds of stuff. For me to say 'thief' and for him to take a game, it made me feel like it was a sexist remark," Williams told reporters after the match.

Osaka defeated Williams in straight sets to win her first career Grand Slam title. 

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