We've done it. We've found the worst thing on the Internet this week, and it's only Wednesday. Take a look:
This is just so ill-advised.
Behold, the collection of lazy Texas stereotypes. Big cowboy hats and boots, a Gadsden flag and a secession banner? All that's missing are comically oversized cigars and something labelled "oil."
Secondly, the cartoon reveals an understanding of Christian theology that would make even a child laugh. Third, it suggests that Houston, which is still reeling from the catastrophic damage brought on by Hurricane Harvey, is a hotbed of weirdo, backwoods secessionists. This may come as news to the city that voted 54 percent in favor of Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election.
Fourth, the cartoon would seem to suggest incorrectly that all rescue efforts are being carried out by the Coast Guard. This is wrong. Houstonians have done an amazing job so far of assisting and rescuing one another, as have outsiders coming from other states. This isn't to detract from the Coast Guard's efforts, but only to say that the people of Texas have also made major contributions.
Finally, the timing of the political point-scoring here is just – wow. Yes, there are secessionists in Texas, but is this really the moment for a round of self-satisfied grinning by a Washington-based cartoonist? Here's a thought: Wait until after all the corpses have been retrieved from the floodwaters before taking political cheap shots at an entire state.
The cartoonist, for his part, defended himself Wednesday, claiming he meant no offense to the people of Texas, hundreds of whom are still displaced and living without basic utilities.
"As a political cartoonist, I try to get people to think – to consider the ironies and subtleties of the world we live in. This cartoon went with an extreme example of anti-government types – Texas Secessionists – benefitting from the heroism of federal government rescuers," he told the Washington Examiner.
"It of course was not aimed at Texans in general, any more than a cartoon about extremists marching in Charlottesville could be construed as a poke at all Virginians," he added. "My heart is with all the victims of Hurricane Harvey's destruction and those risking their lives to save others."
Politico eventually deleted the cartoon from its Twitter timeline Wednesday afternoon, though it's still available for viewing on the news group's website.
This article has been updated to include comment from the cartoonist.