Lisa Haney Illustration
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This was a fun one for me! The Progressive Magazine does a yearly calendar, with one 'progressive' sort of event illustrated each month. I don't believe I did a lot of sketches for this one, because I got this idea right away, and they let me run with it. After reading up on the Palmer Raids of 1920, I could see why the editors chose this largely-forgotten event as their leading illustration. (well, besides the fact that it happened in January...) Back in those days, terrorists were on the rampage... sort of; anarchists were certainly on the loose (like the one who shot McKinley), and you'll recall Russia had just been overthrown in a violent revolution. Our government, in particular Alexander Mitchell Palmer, (then Attorney General), worried about terrorism, and about Communists in general. So they proceeded to arrest 5,000 people on January 2, 1920. (political and social reformers got caught up in the dragnet too, oops!). Backtracking a bit -- J. Edgar Hoover had been put in charge of the 'General Intelligence Division', and he had collected huge lists of 'suspected Communists'. The government gave itself powers to search suspect's (and political activist's) houses in the name of 'national security'. They even shipped some folks to Russia, against their will... talk about "America, love it or leave it"! Well, it turns out the whole thing was pretty tied up with Palmer's political aspirations. Of course The Progressive would like us to see the parallels between that time and our own, so that we might steer clear of their excesses. I included a few little visual 'jokes', since anyone who uses the calendar will have a whole month to puzzle it out. For instance, the smoke stacks in the upper left look like the WTC, and we have the Abu Ghurab-type mask on one of the detainees... but who is that fellow knitting in the upper left, like Madame DeFarge? Hoover, of course! (in drag, of course!) (okay, okay, I know it's just an urban legend. But it worked for the metaphor)
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