Editorials: Don’t jail cartoonists; and Let Netanyahu lose by himself


Nobody should be jailed for hurting a public official’s feelings

Eduardo Narváez, a cartoonist who used to work in the more mainstream media but in recent years continued his work on his own account and in the social media as @edunar54, has had a five-year prison term for cartoons that caused emotional distress to former attorney general kenia Porcell confirmed by the appeals court.

To be honest, the work for which he was condemned was sexist trash. However, it was not revenge porn, an invasion of the former top prosector’s private space to take nude photos of her or anything of that sort. It was merely tasteless and insulting art.

The last time that boorish cartooning got before the Supreme Court, in Mireya Moscoso times, a cartoon alleging a sexual affair between the president and one of her ministers was defended as satire and the court infamously held that in Panama, all satire is criminal defamation. That calumnia e injuria law was later tweaked to take away public officials’ standing to bring such charges.

Actual threats, worse insults, against public figures disfavored by the political caste? Look at what the politicians’ “call center” troll teams do to SUNTRACS leader Saúl Méndez, with no thought of any legal action.

The special protection for public officials? Or for those politicians and bureaucrats on the distaff side? Panama’s constitution says that there shall be no discrimination or special privileges based on social class, political ideas or sex. It also says that we have freedom of the press.

Say unflattering things about Narváez when his cartooning gets creepy? Fair enough. It’s anyone’s right to criticize sexism.

However, it’s a huge national scandal that Panama puts cartoonists in prison because they insult public officials.


Netanyahu shouldn’t be allowed to drag the USA into a big war and Biden down to defeat

What are the protesters chanting?

Genocide Joe, what do you say?

How many kids did you kill today?

All this for a foreign government whose leader needs war to keep his own people from throwing him out for being a crook?

Going so far as to provide money and weapons for flagrant war crimes, committed under the direction of a guy who mocks Biden and the United States?

Watching Israel expand a race war against the Palestinians into a regional war now involving Lebanon, Syria, Yemen, Iraq and if Netanyahu gets his way, Iran? And dragging the United States into this insane adventure?

Time for America to let AIPAC and the Republicans do and say what they will, but to wash our hands of this ethnic cleansing taint. Take away US backing for Netanyahu and his war.


St. Janis of The Forsaken -- she'd get a kick out of that
Santa Janis de las Desamparadas, a graphic by Antonio Marín Segovia based on a photo by Bob Seidemann.

             Don’t compromise yourself. You’re all you’ve got.

Janis Joplin                  

Bear in mind…

Every composer knows the anguish and despair occasioned by forgetting ideas which one had no time to write down.

Hector Berlioz

America does not go abroad in search of monsters to destroy. She is the well-wisher to freedom and independence of all. She is the champion and vindicator only of her own.

John Quincy Adams

Don’t accept rides from strange men, and remember that all men are strange.

Robin Morgan


Contact us by email at thepanamanews@gmail.com

To fend off hackers, organized trolls and other online vandalism, our website comments feature is switched off. Instead, come to our Facebook page to join in the discussion.

These links are interactive — click on the boxes


click to donate via PayPal