It’s Trump’s favorite newspaper to beat up on — but on Monday, the New York Times found itself the target of a major tongue lashing from queer Twitter users because of a cartoon by Oscar-nominated animator Bill Plympton featuring real audio of Trump talking about Putin while the two ride unicorns and kiss.
In this episode of Trump Bites, Donald Trump’s not-so-secret admiration for Vladimir Putin plays out in a teenager’s bedroom, where the fantasies of this forbidden romance come to life. https://t.co/cWeQMuzWUz pic.twitter.com/4shBRkloot— New York Times Opinion (@nytopinion) July 16, 2018
The video is nothing short of bizarre. Trump plays a teenager who has an innocent crush on a bare-chested Putin who visits him in a dream. The whole thing is a little too akin to Fallon combing his fingers through Trump’s hair. I mean, a teenager crushing in a bedroom? Isn’t this the guy who is putting children in literal cages?
The video is part of a longstanding tradition of homophobic “satire” aimed at the special relationship between Trump and the Russian president. Comedians like Chelsea Handler and Jimmy Kimmel have made queer-bashing jokes about Trump, Putin and attorney general Jeff Sessions and gotten called out by queer comedians, as well. In an interview with Mic, comedian Bowen Yang criticized Handler and Kimmel for their top/bottom jokes about both presidents.
“You don’t have to punch down in order to punch up,” Yang said of the joke. “That’s what this feels like, that she’s making a joke about Jeff Sessions at the expense of queer people.”
Several people on Twitter were not happy about the New York Times cartoon.
Out gay Pennsylvania state representative Brian Sims called the cartoon “intensely stupid” and “homophobic as all hell” in a tweet.
@nytimes this isn’t just intensely stupid it’s homophobic as all hell. What on Earth makes you think that equating the love that millions of people across the planet feel for one another to the unconscionably criminal relationship between these two is OK?!? Truly, please explain.— Brian Sims (@BrianSimsPA) July 16, 2018
Others pointed out that the Times cartoon was homophobic, as well.
HOMOPHOBIC JOKES: Come over— Adam Moussa (@adamjmoussa) July 16, 2018
WOKE LIBERALS: I can't
HOMOPHOBIC JOKES: You can use the Trump/Putin meeting as a cover to say gay sex is gross
WOKE LIBERALS: pic.twitter.com/XQhjeqGV1h
Don’t know how to make this plainer: SAYING TR*MP AND P*TIN ARE GAY LOVERS IS •••••••••••HOMOPHOBIC•••••••••••••••••••••••••••AND•••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••WRONG•••••••••••••••— Thesis Queen (@thejustinglover) July 16, 2018
The Times was also the recent subject of queer controversy when it published an op-ed denouncing PrEP as an HIV prevention tool.