Satire Reader Response
In this political cartoon, the deaths of obesity, tobacco and alcohol are compared to the deaths of ebola. A statistic shows that there are 300,000 deaths from obesity each year, 450,000 deaths from tobacco each year and 88,000 deaths from alcohol each year. The man in the cartoon is sarcastically putting that all of these deaths combined make up the deaths of people to ebola around the world. A technique of satire that is being used is a hyperbole. The man is saying that all of these deaths from common bad things that many people do in America, can be compared to the deathly disease of ebola. There are of course more deaths from obesity, tobacco and alcohol than from ebola. This comparison is blown way too out of proportion and the artist is trying to show that these three things should be treated and compared to a deadly disease. Another technique of satire that is used is understatement. The artist is trying to make ebola seem less important by comparing it to obesity, tobacco and alcohol.
By bringing less attention to ebola, the person looking at the cartoon will think that those three things are even worse than it. All of these statistics want people to realize that those three things are killing people in America as ebola is killing people in Africa. Another technique of satire that is used is sarcasm. In the cartoon the artist is saying that obesity, tobacco and alcohol are like ebola. He is being sarcastic by indirectly saying that these three things will kill you as fast as ebola does. This helps the purpose by helping people think of obesity, tobacco and alcohol as bad. Another technique of satire that is used is inversion. In the cartoon this is used as an American man is scared of ebola, even though it is mostly present in Africa. This use of inversion brings people to the attention of the word ebola to put attention on the obese, smoking alcoholic, who is scared that he is going to die. This helps the purpose by making people think that being obese, smoking, and drinking will kill you, just like ebola does. Another technique of satire used in this cartoon is parody.
The artist is making fun of the people that die from ebola. He is comparing them to three things mentioned in the cartoon and making them seem deadly. This helps the purpose of the cartoon by getting a laugh out of someone so they will understand it on a comical level. The final technique of satire that was used was incongruity. The artist put together ebola with obesity, tobacco and alcohol. All of these topics do not seem to fit, but the artist makes them by comparing the deaths of all of them. This helps the purpose of the cartoon by helping people to understand that obesity, tobacco and alcohol and just as bad as the deadly disease ebola. This cartoon brings the overall message that those three things will kill you and to avoid them, or you will end up suffering, like any disease would do to you.