Below is the latest The Pain -- When Will It End?
Updated 12/20/00

Artist's Statement

It was not without some trepidation that I ran this cartoon. I'm always skittish whenever I do a cartoon about race, since I am a honky (or person of no color, as we prefer to be called these days) and have no right to try to be funny about race. I did consider making these children poor white kids-since it is class, rather than race, that's the crux of the cartoon--but frankly most of the poor people where I live are black, and substituting white children in this case would've felt like the same sort of craven, bullshit copout as those multiracial gangs of criminals you see only in Hollywood movies. I was also uncertain about using black urban dialect, but I figured if you're going to use urban black characters they ought to talk like them, so in for a penny, in for a pound. (If my approximation of the dialect is inaccurate, that may embarassingly expose my ignorance, but that's not exactly the same thing as deliberate bigotry.)

I realize that this cartoon is sort of heartless and bleak. As my longtime fans know I always try to make some unpleasant statement around this time of year. I just wanted to take this opportunity to remind everyone that Christmas is all about wasting money on useless shit that nobody wants or needs, Jesus and Dr. Seuss notwithstanding, and for people who can't afford it it's a pretty cruel holiday. Most of the people I've shown this cartoon to have reacted not with laughter but with something more like good old horror. "It's not funny," said Boyd White, who's appeared in a number of my drawings. "It's true." It's nice when something is both funny and true, and given a choice I would rather be funny than truthful, but I'll take what I can get.