‘Dope and dreads’ jokes on coali­tion

Weekend Post (South Africa) - - WORLD -

A GER­MAN weekly il­lus­trated the out­come of Septem­ber’s elec­tion with a pic­ture of Chan­cel­lor An­gela Merkel wear­ing a Rasta­far­ian hat and pass­ing a joint to stoned fel­low lead­ers with dread­locks.

The draw­ing on the cover of Frank­furter All­ge­meine Woche was one of the least sub­tle comic sal­lies in a post-elec­tion pe­riod fix­ated on “Ja­maica” – as pol­i­tics and me­dia have dubbed a prospec­tive coali­tion be­tween Merkel’s con­ser­va­tives, the lib­eral Free Democrats and the ecol­o­gist Greens.

The fact that the three par­ties’ colours of black, yel­low and green match the Caribbean na­tion’s flag has proven ir­re­sistible for politi­cians and jour­nal­ists.

Many jokes have been harm­less, like lead­ers not­ing the roughly 8 500km that sep­a­rate Ber­lin from Kingston as a metaphor for the dis­tance all sides must go in the ar­du­ous ne­go­ti­a­tions.

But crit­ics say there is an un­der­ly­ing cur­rent that re­lies on stereo­types.

COMIC COVER: An­gela Merkel

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