Newspapers Cancel Dilbert Over Racial Commentary

Response follows Scott Adams' remarks on podcast
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 25, 2023 3:00 PM CST
Racial Remarks by Creator of Dilbert Prompt Cancellations
This Dilbert comic strip was personalized using technology.   (AP Photo/Peanuts Worldwide)

Newspapers around the country are telling readers they're dropping the long-running Dilbert cartoon strip in response to racial comments made by its creator, with one saying, "This is not a difficult decision." Scott Adams made the comments on his podcast and online video program, Deadline reports. White people should "get the hell away from Black people," he said, while calling Black people a "hate group." Michigan's eight-newspaper MLive assured readers, "We will work quickly to find a replacement that will entertain you and not violate basic standards of decency and respect for others." The company said it's removing Dilbert from its online platforms, as well.

Adams, who launched the strip lampooning office politics more than three decades ago, made a string of similar statements during the show, Coffee With Scott Adams. Dilbert has grown into a merchandising empire including books, a video game and coffee cups, as well as an animated TV series. The National Cartoonists Society presented Adams with its highest award in 1997. Dilbert has been canceled before; Lee Enterprises dropped it from 77 papers last year after Adams introduced his first Black character, apparently as a vehicle for mocking LGBTQ people and what opponents call "woke" culture.

"We are not a home for those who espouse racism," Chris Quinn, the editor of the Cleveland Plain Dealer, wrote Friday. "We certainly do not want to provide them with financial support." A tweet from Gannett said only, "The USA Today Network will no longer publish the Dilbert comic due to recent discriminatory comments by its creator." That represents more than 300 newspapers, per the Washington Post, which also announced Saturday that it's ending publication of the cartoon strip. The Post said readers asked for the cancellation. (More Dilbert stories.)

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