Annual Convention

Annual Convention October 3-6

The AAEC and Association of Canadian Cartoonists will be teaming up with the Université du Québec à Montréal for a 3-day celebration political cartoonists, October 3-6, 2024.

Online registration coming soon!

Gannett Slashes Editorial Pages from Papers — Along with Cartoons

Word has trickled down from Gannett (née GatehouseMedia) that, beginning June 1, they will be stripping out the daily editorial/opinion section in the print editions of all their daily papers. Gannett, the largest newspaper publisher in the country as measured by total daily circulation, announced their Op/Ed pages will now only appear in print on Wednesdays and Sundays. (If that— one cartoonist who freelances at a Gannett-owned paper said their editor told them it would only be Sunday.)

While some editors at the affected newspapers spun this as a good and necessary move, noting that local editorials and letters to the editor could still be found online, Mary Kelli Palka at the Florida Times-Union flatly wrote that content was being slashed: “We also no longer have access to syndicated content, though we had stopped running many syndicated columns years ago. But it does mean we’re losing syndicated cartoons. This has all made us rethink our editorial pages.”

Cartoonists were swift to respond. “Bad news for editorial cartoonists for sure, as well as really horrible news for an informed citizenry in the communities these papers are supposed to serve,” wrote Jimmy Margulies, the award-winning political cartoonist who spent more than two decades on the staff of The Record in northern New Jersey, one of the papers hit by the cuts.

Some cartoonists, posting on a private message board for AAEC members, said their freelance work in Gannett-owned papers would be affected. (Gannett has not had a full-time staff cartoonist since laying off Mike Thompson from USAToday last year.)

One cartoonist, speaking on background about the decision, said “It’s a cowardly and wholly expected move. Even for those one or two days a week, I’ve been asked to draw ‘unifying’ rather than ‘divisive’ cartoons. In other words, they want Hallmark cards.”

Another syndicated cartoonist, whose local newspaper was hit by Gannett’s big change, vented, “What I wanna know is, what does a newspaper become without an editorial page? #pennysaver.”

Gannett, whose newspapers once had dozens of staff cartoonists, including a number of Pulitzer Prize-winners, was absorbed by Gatehouse Media in 2019, who bought the chain for its brand name recognition.

— JP Trostle

Photo illustration by Jape; photograph by Jernej Furman, Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

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The mission of the AAEC is to champion and defend editorial cartooning and free speech as essential to liberty in the United States and throughout the world.

The AAEC aims to be an international leader in support of the human, civil, and artistic rights of editorial cartoonists around the world, and to stand with other international groups in support of the profession.



Cartoons in Education

Every two weeks throughout the year, The Learning Forum and the AAEC offers CARTOONS FOR THE CLASSROOM, a free lesson resource for teachers discussing current events.  Visit for more lesson plans.