Oppenheimer’s cartoon, which appeared in NRC on September 11, depicts D66 leader Sigrid Kaag as a witch flying into the Twin Towers (depicting Mark Rutte). It symbolizes the stalled formation.
On Monday morning, Van Engelshoven showed her disgust at the ‘sexist’ cartoon in which her colleague is depicted on the TV program Goedemorgen Nederland. “Cartoonists are indeed free and should be able to draw anything, but it struck me again that a woman with a strong opinion is portrayed in politics as a witch,” said Van Engelshoven. “That image was created by Geert Wilders and I find it painful and sexist that we portray a woman with an opinion as a witch in this country.” She also found it inappropriate that Oppenheimer ‘compares 9/11 with the discussion in Dutch politics’.
D66 members tumbled over each other last weekend to condemn the cartoon. “NRC thought: let’s portray a woman with a strong opinion on 9/11 as a witch and a terrorist…,” wrote MP Sjoerd Sjoerdsma on Twitter. The Amsterdam party leader Reinier van Dantzig also denounced the cartoon, which would entail ‘wrong innuendo’. “A powerful woman with an opinion is a witch, portray Kaag as a terrorist. (…) As far as I’m concerned, this is no mockery, no humor, but completely inappropriate.” Both statements received a ‘likeby Van Engelshoven.
Weird, says PVV’er Bosma. He cites the ‘Thorbecke principle’, which means that the government should not judge art and science, and announces oral questions on the matter. If Chamber President Bergkamp (D66) approves the questions, Van Engelshoven must show up in the Chamber on Tuesday to account for himself.
Cartoonist Oppenheimer already announced in the AD this weekend that he found the angry reactions of D66 members hypocritical. “So those are the same people who, when I’m threatened when I make a cartoon about Islam, stand up front to say they’re behind me, and that I have to keep going because ‘your sound is so important’. And such a person is now crying over his own party at a negative cartoon. Then you didn’t understand anything.”