Cjr290's Blog

We now have new and important evidence

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Published May 8, 1950

This sketch, made on May 8, 1950, depicts an impassioned Joe McCarthy making a speech before the House of Un-American Activities Committee. Two men, who are about to enter the committee meeting, are hauling some “new and important evidence” that links a man to the American Communist Party. Herblock satirizes the evidence, which is a piece of wooden fence sawed off by McCarthy’s cronies, and relays his judgment that the McCarthy hearings are based on wild rumors rather than convincing evidence. Herblock attempts to discredit McCarthy in two ways here. First he indicates that McCarthy’s accusations are unfounded; a fence that has the words “Joe Zilch is a red” hardly proves that the accused is actually a member of the communist party. Block also attempted to turn public opinion against the trials by using the name “Joe Zilch”, which is  is synonymous with the terms “Average Joe” and “John Doe”. It implied that no American was safe from McCarthy’s accusations.

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