Reaction round-up: The Guardian’s Nicola Sturgeon ‘incest’ cartoon causes Twitter storm


Cartoon sparks anger and confusion on social media over depiction of Scots

THERE was an angry response on social media on Monday after a Steve Bell cartoon was published in the Guardian mocking Nicola Sturgeon, and depicting her claiming her main election issues included ‘incest and Scottish country dancing’.

Many Twitter users said the cartoon was racist and called for complaints to press regulator Ipso. Meanwhile, others said in the post-Charlie Hebdo world people should think twice about being ‘outraged’ at cartoons.

Many people said they didn’t get the joke, although it looks as though it was a play on the quote ‘You should try eveything once except incest and Morris dancing’.

The cartoon follows anger at other recent depictions of Scotland in the media, including a column in the Mail on Sunday by Allan Massie (click here to read more) in which he said he could see “the Thames foaming with blood” if the SNP wins enough election seats to hold some power after the General Election in May.

We’ve rounded up a selection of responses to Steve Bell cartoon.

I’ve never rated Steve Bell as much good but this is actually too rubbish to even be offensive. What a balloon.

— Killie Me Softly (@mickmcavoy) March 9, 2015

Just met a couple of friends who voted NO in Indyref who would now gladly vote YES after seeing the Guardian cartoon this morning.#indyref

— SHUFFLEPAW (@shufflepaw) March 9, 2015

At least @guardian haven’t gone and published a racist, egregious cartoon about the #SNP or anything…oh, wait…

— Fifi Velasquez (@FiFiVelasquez) March 9, 2015

No matter what your views on the SNP/independence, surely this cartoon from The @Guardian is just plain racist?

— Stuart Kenny (@StuartKenny) March 9, 2015

So @Guardian are you going to apologise for that appalling Steve Bell cartoon? It’s merely offensive, with no satirical edge to justify it.

— Richard Ashcroft (@qmulbioethics) March 9, 2015

I like an offensive cartoon as much as the next man but that @guardian cartoon today is in astonishingly bad taste.

— Craig Smith (@CraigRWS) March 9, 2015

@guardian Please keep Steve Bell’s crappy cartoon online, it illustrates our point perfectly. Scottish voices aren’t welcome in this union.

— John III (@The_Extractor_) March 9, 2015

Steve Bells cartoon in todays @guardian is completely beyond the pale, and not worthy of a supposed ‘quality’ paper.

— Davie Miller (@badger_funk) March 9, 2015

It seems that some ‘wee lassie’ from Ayrshire is causing an all mighty panic down at Westminster going by the vile cartoon in @guardian

— Stephen Cairns (@kermit_1987) March 9, 2015

Just want to quietly point out that to be outraged at the sturgeon cartoon in the Guardian, I suppose, makes you not Charlie after all…

— Tom Kearns (@TPKearns) March 9, 2015

Eh @guardian – please feel free to explain that ridiculous (& insulting) monstrosity of a cartoon. What the hell?

— SerialSockThief (@serialsockthief) March 9, 2015

@rachaelarnott @guardian Agree. I am English – lived in Scotland 20 years – and I am utterly offended by that cartoon.

— The Yes Rat (@TheYesRat) March 9, 2015

@guardian a. Apology is due to the people of scotland. Your cartoon is highly offensive. I used to be a reader until last year. Sickening.

— Ross Matthews (@Rossmatthews86) March 9, 2015

And we asked our Twitter followers what they thought.

@TheCommonSpace @guardian this looks like hate speech to me.

— Stewart Bremner (@stewartbremner) March 9, 2015

@TheCommonSpace @guardian it’s just boring. Let’s so getting offended already. Grown up civic nationalism remember…

— Davy MacIver (@ruskadoronin) March 9, 2015

@TheCommonSpace @guardian Kinda offensive, but we are Charlie so water off a duck’s back.

— Wee Jock Elliot (@WeeJockElliot) March 9, 2015

@TheCommonSpace @DouglasDaniel @guardian What’s the problem? Charlie Hebdo and all. Guardian should be free to use the n-word if thy want /s

— PolitiCrumb (@politicrumb) March 9, 2015

@TheCommonSpace @guardian It’s a baiting piece for cybernats and simple complaint to IPSO will kill this nonsense.

— Forres Dee 45 (@ForresDee) March 9, 2015

@TheCommonSpace @guardian offensive, pathetic rubbish.

— Ian (@afc42) March 9, 2015

@TheCommonSpace @guardian if it’s going to be offensive, has to be funny (cf F. Boyle). This is just mildly offensive and not remotely funny

— Iain Gordon (@iainhg) March 9, 2015

@stewartbremner @TheCommonSpace @guardian Its shite, on many levels

— Tom (@Tom_Celt) March 9, 2015

@politicrumb @TheCommonSpace @DouglasDaniel @guardian a daft cartoon about the SNP is the same as racism, you’re right

— ironic compound (@weedroid) March 9, 2015

@TheCommonSpace @guardian The Guardian, with one small cartoon has managed to lower its standards below The Sun and the DM.

— Pink Panther (@acmepd) March 9, 2015

@TheCommonSpace @guardian Whoopeedoo However, Steve Bell scared to offend Muslims – why the double standard?

— Nick Smithers (@nickysmithers) March 9, 2015

@TheCommonSpace @DouglasDaniel @guardian The usual (insulting) kilt references, but calling all Scots ‘incestuous’ is appalling!

— Drouthy Scot (@DrouthyScot) March 9, 2015

@TheCommonSpace @guardian obviously this would not have been printed if we had voted No and we were better together. Oh wait. just offensive

— a j murison (@ajmurison) March 9, 2015

@TheCommonSpace I’m just bemused that the @guardian didn’t tell him to go back to the drawing board… Not even a pretence at satire.

— Doug Daniel (@DouglasDaniel) March 9, 2015

@TheCommonSpace @DouglasDaniel @guardian Is this what The Guardian think of us?My opinion?I’ve already waisted too much time on this rubbish

— Kevin Rinchey (@broomhilldons) March 9, 2015

@TheCommonSpace @DouglasDaniel @guardian A disgrace. Racist bile. Guardian turning into gutter level Viz .

— Stevie Mcluskey (@steviemcl) March 9, 2015

@TheCommonSpace @DouglasDaniel @guardian I don’t get it, what is the gag, punchline etc… Where is the joke??

— Schrodingers EU (@NMQ_Edi) March 9, 2015

@DouglasDaniel @TheCommonSpace As Doug says, most alarming issue is that @guardian seen merit in it. There’s no discernible “satire” there.

— Colin McKean (@BaffieBox) March 9, 2015

@TheCommonSpace @Bellshilltim @guardian it’s badly drawn and a piece of nonsense but it’s his right 1st and foremost

— Theresa McG (@theresacfc) March 9, 2015

@TheCommonSpace @guardian Bell is passe, shame Guardian don’t realise that. Reason I left G after 40 years is because of anti-scots bias.

— Mae_Carson (@Mae_Carson1) March 9, 2015

Picture courtesy of The Guardian