Mark Knight from the Herald Sun has caused an international storm with his depiction of Serena Williams, one of the greatest tennis players of all time, throwing a tantrum during the final of the US Open last weekend.
That in itself is not the problem. The trouble is that Knight has gone out of his way to depict her not as a champion athlete but as wild and barbaric; full-lipped, ugly and ape-like.
Novelist J. K. Rowling led the charge, tweeting, “Well done on reducing one of the greatest sportswomen alive to racist and sexist tropes and turning a second great sportswoman (Naomi Osaka) into a faceless prop.”
On Radio 3AW Neil Mitchell defended Knight and asked Jason Johnson, an American politics and journalism professor, if the cartoon was no more offensive than another Knight drew this week showing Scott Morrison as a muppet. After all, they were both poking fun at powerful figures.