The Concord Monitor's editorial page is clearly no friend of Speaker of the New Hampshire House William O'Brien. Hey, our own editorial pages clearly have political favorites and foes. That is as it should be.
But in last week's furor over an editorial page cartoon that even its editor conceded was “harsh,'' the Monitor's hypocrisy was on full display.
The Mike Marland cartoon compared Speaker O'Brien to Adolf Hitler. “Harsh'' indeed.
Yet the day before the cartoon was published, the Monitor's editorial was headlined “Embarrassed by the House'' and was a condemnation of Speaker O'Brien's stewardship. It even quoted from the Speaker's first days on the job, in which he called for civility and urged lawmakers to leave disparagement, etc., to “the editorial pages.''
We guess O'Brien must have known what was coming from the Monitor.
So the paper that condemns the speaker for not playing nice in the House then compares him to one of the most ruthless butchers of the 20th Century. Nice.
We like a punchy cartoon as much as the next fellow. Monitor editor Felice Belman said this one was “on point.''
Curiously, however, Belman said the cartoonist's views were his own and her editorial board members are not the cartoonist's “censors.''
That is an interesting, and misleading, word to use. Of course they are not “censors.'' It is their newspaper. They are the editors. What they edit in, or out, is their choice and their responsibility.
Trying to duck that makes them look even more ludicrous.