Unions Are Imperfect

Cartoon by Barry


Transcript of cartoon:

Panel 1
Two angry-looking men are talking to each other in a house. A window in the background lets us see that it’s snowing outside. One of the men is wearing glasses, suspenders and a striped necktie; the other man is wearing a bowtie and smacks his fist into his palm.

GLASSES: I just realized: Unions are imperfect!
BOWTIE: Then let’s get rid of unions!

Panel 2
Same scene. Glasses is looking down at his clothing with an expression of distress; Bowtie is yellling.

GLASSES: These clothes aren’t perfect either!
BOWTIE: We’ll get rid of them too!

Panel 3
Same scene, but now the guys are naked (“censor bars” have appeared in front of their naughty bits). Glasses is looking around at the room, and Bowtie is holding a can of gasoline.

GLASSES: Hey, our house isn’t perfect!
BOWTIE: Burn it down!

Panel 4

Still naked, Glasses and Bowtie are now standing out in the show, shivering and looking sad. In the background, we can see their house burning down.

GLASSES: I just r-realized: Something imperfect can st-still be c-c-crucial.
BOWTIE: Y-y-ya think?

Posted in Labor rights & Unions |

What Have Unions Ever Done?

Cartoon by Barry


The beautiful backgrounds for this comic were drawn by the amazing Adrian Wallace! Thanks, Adrian!

Transcript of cartoon:

An elderly woman in a striped skirt, walking a dog, is being spoken to by a friendly young man, who is holding out a petition on a clipboard and wearing an anti-union t-shirt. The dog sniffs at the young man’s leg in a friendly way.

MAN: Ma’am, you should sing our right-to-work petition… What have unions ever done for you?

CAPTION: Outlawing child labor.
The panel shows a young girl in a striped shirt playing on a old-fashioned scooter.

CAPTION: The 8 hour workday.
The panel shows a young woman at work, delivering packages, and whistling. She’s wearing a striped shirt.

CAPTION: Health plans and sick leave.
The panel shows the same young woman, now with a broken arm in a cast. A friend is signing the cast.

CAPTION: Maternity Leave.
The same woman in the striped shirt, now a little older, pushing a baby in a stroller.

CAPTION: Weekends
The same woman in the striped shirt, now older still, at a carnival, being pulled along by her happy daughter, who now looks about 10.

CAPTION: Vacation time.
The same woman and daughter at the beach, the woman now wearing a striped swimsuit, and looking older still, as she walks along the beach with a metal detector. In the background, her daughter, now a teen or young woman, is talking on a cell phone.

CAPTION: Social Security and Medicare
The same woman, now elderly and dressed as she was in the first panel. She has the dog with her, and is pulling envelopes out of her mailbox.

This panel shows the woman and the young man with the anti-union petition again. The woman has walked past the young man, her nose in the air in a “I refuse to even dignify that with an answer” attitude. The dog has the same attitude. The young man watches them leave, not understanding.

MAN: Ma’am?

Posted in Labor rights & Unions |

The One Thing We Can All Agree On

Cartoon by Barry


Transcript of cartoon:

Two people – a woman and a man – are arguing on a sidewalk. The woman has long curly black hair, and is wearing sweatpants and a tank top; the man has short blonde hair (shaved on the sides) and is wearing a button-down shirt.

Panel 1
WOMAN: Conservatives have no compassion!
MAN: Why do liberals hate freedom?

Panel 2
Both characters are yelling.
WOMAN: Wingnut! Teabagger! Republithug! Fundie!
MAN: Sheeple! SJW! Moonbat! Totalitarian!

Panel 3
The woman stomps away as the man turns his back on her.
WOMAN: Here’s an idea: Kill yourself!
MAN: Die under a bus!

Panel 4 is a “split-screen” panel, showing two separate scenes divided by a diagonal line. In one scene, the woman is talking angrily into her cell phone; in the other, the man is talking angrily at someone who is off-panel. The two characters share one word balloon, as they are saying the exact same thing.
BOTH CHARACTERS: I tried talking, but those people refuse to be reasonable!

Posted in Uncategorized |

Stop Touching Her Hair White People!

Cartoon by Barry



Panel 1
There are two women in this panel, a white woman and a black woman. Both are smiling.

White woman: Your hair is so beautiful! Can I touch it?
Black woman: Thanks, but no.

Panel 2
This panel shows a different white woman, and the same black woman. The white woman is smiling, but the Black woman’s expression is now a little wary, and her arms are crossed.

White woman 2: How do you wash your hair? Does it smell? Can I touch it?
Black woman: I’d rather you didn’t.

Panel 3
A white man now appears, along with the same Black woman. He is smiling and reaching for her head; she is jerking back, holding up her hands protectively.

White man: What does that stuff feel like?
Black woman: Hey! Hands off, please.

Panel 4
A third white woman is in this panel, along with the same Black woman. The white woman is reaching out for the Black woman; the Black woman is yelling in frustration.

White woman 3: May I touch your-
Black woman: NOT A PETTING ZOO!

Panel 5
The Black woman has stormed off, leaving white woman 3 alone in the panel. She looks surprised, looking in the direction that the Black woman left.

Panel 6
White woman 3 now looks annoyed.

White woman 3 (thought): Why are black people so touchy?

Posted in Anti-racist cartoons |

Where Am I Supposed To Pee?

Cartoon by Barry


This comic was co-written by Barry Deutsch and Grace Annam, and drawn by Barry.

Transcript of comic:

Panel 1

(A white woman in jeans and a t-shirt, with a big mop of curly hair and glasses, is holding out a clipboard and a pen towards a Black woman with a polka-dot skirt, sleeveless blouse, carrying a purse. The polka-dot skirt woman has stopped to listen to what clipboard woman is saying. They are on a sidewalk; we can see a tree, a fire hydrant, and a parked car in the background. A dog sniffs the hydrant.)

Clipboard: Sign the petition for the “Bathroom Bill!” It makes it illegal for people to use public bathrooms that don’t match the sex on their birth certificate!

Panel 2

(Polka-Dot has turned towards Clipboard and gestures towards herself by placing her hand on her upper chest.)

Polka-Dot: Actually, I’m trans, and there’s something I really want to ask you.

Panel 3

(A large panel, showing Polka Dot shrugging while looking a bit angry. Behind her we can see a street full of buildings drawn in a cartoony style. Her dialog is written in large bubble letters, forming the title for this comic strip.)

Polka-Dot: Where am I supposed to pee?

Panel 4

(Clipboard, looking irritated, holds her hands out in a “it’s so easy!” gesture, while Polka-Dot clasps her hands together and looks a bit horrified at what Clipboard is suggesting.)

Clipboard: Does it say “male” on your birth certificate? Then use the men’s room.

Polka-Dot: But I’m no safer in a men’s room than any other woman!

Panel 5

(This entire panel is a thought balloon extending from the previous panel, showing what Polka-Dot is visualizing as she speaks. The image shows Polka-Dot, having just walked into a men’s room, looking frightened as three hulking male figures approach her. Polka-Dot is holding up a sign that says “I’m Trans.”

Polka-Dot’s dialog in this panel isn’t spoken by the Polka-Dot in Polka-Dot’s visualization; rather, it’s an extension of the dialog from the previous panel.)

Polka-Dot: And I’d out myself every time I use a bathroom! That’s really dangerous! Lots of trans people have been assaulted!

Panel 6

(Polka-Dot is attempting to explain further, but Clipboard holds out her hands in a “stop talking” gesture.)

Polka-Dot: I’m just asking that you think about how trans folks are supposed to–

Clipboard: That’s not gonna happen.

Polka-Dot: But–

Panel 7

(Much to Polka-Dot’s surprise, Clipboard reaches up with both hands and lifts the entire top of her head neatly off, as if it were a hat. We can see the top of Clipboard’s brain, and that her brain is bound with many tight black cords.)

Clipboard: Here, look at my brain.

Polka-Dot: Whoa!

Panel 8

(A close-up on Clipboard’s exposed brain, and the thick black cords binding it; Clipboard points at the brain with her left hand.)

Clipboard: See that stuff strangling my brain? That’s fear. Fear of things I don’t understand. Fear of you.

Panel 9

(Polka-Dot looks concerned, while Clipboard yells angrily.)

Polka-Dot: All that fear strangling your brain looks really painful. Why not take it off?

Clipboard: Never!

Panel 10

(Still looking irritated, Clipboard explains. Behind her we can see the city as a dark silhouette.)

Clipboard: Uprooting my fear would require lots of work. I’d rather direct my fear at you. That way I don’t have to confront it.

Panel 11

(A closeup on Clipboard, laughing like a B-Movie villain. We can still see her bound brain.)

Clipboard: That’s how fear always wins! Until everyone stops seeing trans people as freaks to be feared, I can’t lose! Ha ha ha!

Panel 12

(Final panel. We are in a park, but there are science fiction elements; there’s a spaceship floating in the background. Two children, one on a hoverboard, and one with pointy ears and with a robot dog on a leash, are talking. In the foreground, Clipboard – brain still strangled – reacts with frustration to what the kids are saying.)

Hoverboard Child: My teacher says people used to try to stop trans people from going to the bathroom!

Robot Dog Child: Weird! Where would President Hernandez pee?

Clipboard: Dammit!

Posted in LGBT cartoons |

The Wage Gap and How Much Women Work

Cartoon by Barry


This cartoon is by Barry Deutsch and Becky Hawkins.


Panel 1
In the foreground, a middle-aged man types on his laptop. Behind him, a yelling child is calling to the man, while the child’s mother, holding an infant, shushes him. A caption shows us what the man is typing.
JUNIOR: Dad! Dad! DAD!
MOTHER: Junior, let your father work.
CAPTION: “The ‘wage gap’…”

Panel 2
Same scene. The boy has calmed down, and the mother is bringing him along by the shoulder as she exits. The mother looks exhausted, and the baby is pulling on her hair.
MOTHER: I’m going out – I have to meet with Junior’s teacher and do groceries and pick up your dry cleaning and…
CAPTION: “…mostly disappears….”

Panel 3
The mom has departed, but the man, still typing, turns his head to call out after her.
MAN: Oh, the nursing home left a message about my mother… Would you take care of that?
CAPTION: “…when you control for the fact…”

Panel 4
The man turns back to typing.
MAN (thought balloon): Hope she makes stew for dinner tonight.
CAPTION: “…that women work far fewer hours than men.”

Posted in Becky Hawkins collaborations, Economic cartoons, Feminist cartoons |

Unions, Bosses, And The Balance of Power

Cartoon by Barry

This is an illustration drawn for a union newsletter.



The first panel shows two people on a see-saw, both glum-looking; a man in a suit and a woman wearing a work uniform t-shirt and jeans. Although they’re not very different in physical size, the man is much heavier than the woman, and the see-saw is pressed against the ground on his side.

CAPTION: The relationship between you and your employer is not one of equals…

Now the woman has been joined on her side of the see-saw by five other worker. The workers look happier now. The employer in the suit looks a bit surprised. The see saw is now perfectly balanced.

CAPTION: Being in a union fixes the imbalance!

Posted in Labor rights & Unions |

Wall Street And Political Corruption

Cartoon by Barry



Two white people, both dressed in business wear, are talking. We’ll call the man on the left “Senator” and the woman on the right “WS.” WS is carrying a huge industrial hose, out of which water is pouring.

Panel 1
WS: Hi, Senator! I’m from Wall Street, and I’d like to give your campaign some water!
Senator: Forget it! I don’t sell my votes.

Panel 2
A close up of WS, smiling reassuringly.
WS: Don’t worry. We only want to give you water and talk to you about our point of view.

Panel 3
WS: Over time, we’ll keep providing water and you’ll keep listening to our views.

Panel 4
WS: At first because you need the water, but then because we’re just so smart and sensible.

Panel 5
WS: And when complex economic bills come up, we’ll be glad to offer advice. We are the experts, after all!

Panel 6
We back away from the close-ups and see a full body view of both people. They are now completely submerged in the water that’s been coming out of WS’s hose.
Senator: I guess there’s nothing corrupt about that…
WS: Nothing at all!

Posted in Economic cartoons |

Equal Opportunity

Cartoon by Barry


The cartoon shows two men. The first man, a young man wearing a suit and tie, is clean-shaven with short hair, and is standing near a park bench, talking on his cell phone. Seated on the park bench is the second man, a bit older in appearance, with stubble and a van dyke beard. He is wearing a knit cap, a hoodie, and sweatpants.

SUIT: We need equal opportunities, not equal outcomes. No free lunches for anyone! You can’t get more egalitarian than that.
SWEATS (cheerfully): There’s no such thing as “equal opportunity.”

Suit removes his phone from his ear and turns to face Sweats.
SUIT: Excuse me?
SWEATS: Someone who’s tall has a better shot at being a basketball star. Someone with rich parents is born with a big advantage. “Opportunities” are never really equal.

A close shot of Sweats, as he gestures to indicate himself.
SWEATS: And what about someone like me? I’ve never been able to hold down a job… would you say I deserve starvation and homelessness?

Suit looks abashed.
SUIT: Well… not to your face.
SWEATS: Mighty egalitarian of you.

Posted in Economic cartoons |

Pro-Life Journalism

Cartoon by Barry

Pro Life Journalism cartoon

Transcript of cartoon:

A man in a jacket and tie is listening to a woman in a striped shirt speak.
WOMAN: We at Planned Parenthood don’t sell fetuses. We donate fetuses for medical research. There’s a fee for expenses, but we never profit.

The man turns his back towards the viewer and is facing the woman’s word balloon from panel 1, which has remained in the cartoon, but is now mostly hidden by the man stepping in front of it. He has produced a magic marker and is making marks on the woman’s word balloon; the marker makes a “squeak squeak squeak” sound effect. The woman is puzzled by this development.
MAN: Hold on a minute…

The man has turned back towards the viewers, and is holding up the woman’s word balloon from panel one. He has crossed off most of the words on the balloon; the remain words read “We at Planned Parenthood… sell… fetuses… for… profit.” He is pointing an accusing finger at the woman while yelling. The woman looks very surprised.

Posted in Feminist cartoons |