In the wake of the Charlie Hebdo shooting, the task of cartoonists is to keep doing what they do, focusing satire on those in power and those who seek to wield power in ugly ways like the gunmen, Canberra Times cartoonist David Pope says.
When he heard about the attack, he drew a quick pencil sketch while watching the TV reports late on Wednesday night.
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Paris attack: David Pope cartoon goes viral
Canberra Times cartoonist David Pope discusses how the strength of communities to 'stick together' inspired his sketch following the attack on the Charlie Hebdo office.
Within hours, the image had gone viral on social media, and by 4pm on Thursday it had more than 60,000 retweets and close to 30,000 favourites.
"It just hit a nerve," Pope said.
"I met at least one of the French cartoonists at a French cartooning festival a few years ago and I just stayed up to watch the news to find out as much as I could about what happened.
"It wasn't until early in the morning our time that we knew who died and I just couldn't sleep."
Can't sleep tonight, thoughts with my French cartooning colleagues, their families and loved ones #CharlieHebdo pic.twitter.com/LqIMRCHPgK — David Pope (@davpope) January 7, 2015
Pope was not alone. Cartoons were prevalent on social media as other cartoonists and supporters spoke out on behalf of the victims of the attack on French magazine Charlie Hebdo, where four of France's most prominent satirical cartoonists were among the magazine's staffers and two police officers killed.
The hashtag #jesuischarlie, I am Charlie, quickly gained in popularity.
" @TheMagnusShaw: A terrible day for all cartoonists. #JeSuisCharlie pic.twitter.com/nMqr4Fzpy7" for some reason it was THIS one that pricked ... — Tom McLeish (@mcleish_t) January 7, 2015
Pope said he didn't think the attack would change anything about what he or other cartoonists did.
He hoped it prompted a movement promoting social solidarity in a free, open and tolerant society in France and elsewhere.
"Ultimately people who carry out these attacks can't defeat ideas through these means and they won't succeed," he said.
"Questions are always asked of us [cartoonists]: 'Are we focusing on the right targets?'"
"We know images are powerful, so thinking through the consequences of what could come out of them for social cohesion and solidarity is a question we are always talking about."
Pope said most cartoonists who posted images online had a similarly supportive response.
"In the first instance you feel for the family and friends of the people who have died all the journalists, police and cartoonists," he said.
Well, today's #doodleaday was a no-brainer... #JeSuisCharlie pic.twitter.com/2OMAyQIQ1o — Jamesuary (@RteeFufkin) January 7, 2015
The Australian Cartoonists Association condemned the shooting which president Jules Faber said "savagely attacked" freedom of speech.
"Freedom of speech is the primary tool of all cartoonists. It isn't pen or ink or graphic tablet... It is the freedom to speak their own opinion based on truth," he said.
"In Paris this week, this tool was momentarily blunted by extremists who do not hold that freedom of speech is a tool. They consider it a threat."
Pope said France's cartooning and comment culture was far more extensive than Australia's and there wasn't an equivalent of the magazine here.
"[Cartooning] is a lot more valued in some ways, they have huge festivals that go for a week at a time," he said.
"They have a long history of satire and comment culture."
Bravo Matt. Dignified anger on a very dark day. #JeSuisCharlie pic.twitter.com/QzzWnHKbhC — Jon Laurence (@jonlaurence) January 7, 2015
While Pope did not agree with all the decisions of what French cartoonists and magazines published, he said nothing justified the brutal and shocking massacre.
"The cartoonists in France at those publications push the boundaries a lot more than we do in Anglo countries," he said.
"I don't think it will change the culture, I don't think these people can win.
"It's something the French really value in their culture and it's something the people want to preserve and fight for and protect."
#JeSuisCharlie Dear haters of freedom of expression : We are not going to stop drawing pic.twitter.com/smj7sqxomy — The Power Of One. (@france7776) January 7, 2015
I despair of living in a world overrun by madmen who claim moral authority while slaughtering comics. #JeSuisCharlie pic.twitter.com/byaX0CX8Oc — Andy Corren (@andycorren) January 7, 2015
I am devastated by what just happened in France. #CharlieHebdo pic.twitter.com/IxEbScqYFh — jean jullien (@jean_jullien) January 7, 2015
Charlie Hebdo. Nooit opzij. pic.twitter.com/MJwGKPQ8jU — Joep Bertrams (@joepbertrams) January 7, 2015
C'est un drame pour la France... #CharlieHebdo pic.twitter.com/lGfNUHfQIZ — Cyprien (@MonsieurDream) January 7, 2015
The little weapon! #CharlieHebdo #cartoon pic.twitter.com/VFFZD2f8Rz — Satish Acharya (@satishacharya) January 7, 2015
La viñeta de hoy. Comparta y/o comente si quiere. #CharlieHebdo http://t.co/aj7Vbn3b6c pic.twitter.com/jtuiGf0Vnq — malaimagen (@malaimagen) January 7, 2015
This sketch was widely circulated after appearing on the Instagram account '@Banksy', purporting to be by the reclusive artist, but was later revealed to have been created by 31-year-old French illustrator Lucille Clerc.
with Scott Parker