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Paul Godfrey Says Olivia Chow Sun Cartoon Didn't Cross The Line (TWEETS, POLL)

At least one person in Canada thinks The Toronto Sun's cartoon showing Olivia Chow in a Mao suit didn't go too far.

That person is Postmedia president and CEO Paul Godfrey, who will soon (pending regulatory approval) take control of the newspaper that printed it.

Toronto commentator Jeet Heer emailed Godfrey on Monday to ask his opinion about the Sunday cartoon, which shows Chow riding her late husband Jack Layton's coattails on a skateboard.

Chow had previously called the cartoon "disgusting."

"Because I am Chinese-Canadian, I must be a communist and have slanted eyes and glasses … and since I am a woman, I must be inferior and therefore not good enough for the job of the mayor so I must rely on my deceased husband. So it is both racist and sexist," she told CP24.

Heer laid out his conversation with Godfrey on his blog.

The long and short of Godfrey's response is that he didn't feel the cartoon crossed the line, and that the artist, Andy Donato, is neither racist nor sexist himself.

"People who enter all forms of public life may from time to time not like what a cartoonist produces. I do not believe he crossed the line of good taste on this cartoon," he said.

Heer also tweeted about the conversation:

1. I have a doozy of a conversation with Paul Godfrey, CEO of Postmedia about that Donato cartoon of Olivia Chow.

— Jeet Heer (@HeerJeet) October 28, 2014

2. A reminder, this is the cartoon in question: https://t.co/VHcrOufBYM

— Jeet Heer (@HeerJeet) October 28, 2014

3. Here is my email exchange with Godfrey: http://t.co/jvaGTjByPL

— Jeet Heer (@HeerJeet) October 28, 2014

4. Would encourage everyone to read that exchange. A few highlights. Godfrey initially says he hasn't seen cartoon.

— Jeet Heer (@HeerJeet) October 28, 2014

5. In initial response, Godfrey also says best response to situation like this is "to smile and move on"

— Jeet Heer (@HeerJeet) October 28, 2014

6. When I press him on the cartoon, saying that it is available on line and giving link, Godfrey says flatly that it is not racist or sexist

— Jeet Heer (@HeerJeet) October 28, 2014

7. Godfrey's defense of cartoon rests in part on personal defense of Donato. Cartoonist is not racist or sexist and neither is cartoon.

— Jeet Heer (@HeerJeet) October 28, 2014

8. Godfrey's response precludes idea that racism/sexism are systematic and not just acts of bad people.

— Jeet Heer (@HeerJeet) October 28, 2014

9. Godfrey further says cartoon does not even cross line of good taste. Also that affirms Donato's centrality to Sun franchise.

— Jeet Heer (@HeerJeet) October 28, 2014

10. Godfrey, as I understand it, will soon be the CEO of a newspaper chain that will include most of the papers in Canada (am I right?)

— Jeet Heer (@HeerJeet) October 28, 2014

11. Beyond Godfrey, there is the Postmedia and Sun chains. Sun has affirmed support of Donato.

— Jeet Heer (@HeerJeet) October 28, 2014

12. I asked some Postmedia people what they think of cartoon. @cselley said it was racist (I'm grateful for that).

— Jeet Heer (@HeerJeet) October 28, 2014

13. @jonkay says cartoon is not racist, just tasteless and dumb. @acoyne and @terencecorcoran haven't responded.

— Jeet Heer (@HeerJeet) October 28, 2014

14. There's been a lot of discussion of white privilege, which incoming Toronto mayor denies exists.

— Jeet Heer (@HeerJeet) October 28, 2014

15. One way to define problem: white privilege is major newspaper running that cartoon & corporate owners not seeing a problem with it.

— Jeet Heer (@HeerJeet) October 28, 2014

16. Where are we going from here? Are we going to let this die? Will Star cover this? Globe? CBC?

— Jeet Heer (@HeerJeet) October 28, 2014

17. Can someone storify this. I have some vomiting I have to do.

— Jeet Heer (@HeerJeet) October 28, 2014

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