The plight of migrant children being forcibly separated from their families at the southern border has sparked widespread outrage this week. An estimated seven hundred of these children have been transferred to New York, and the disgust over the Trump Administration's "zero tolerance" immigration policy that's taking these children from their parents is the focus of next week's New Yorker cover.
The cover art is called "Yearning to Breathe Free," a nod to Emma Lazarus's "The New Colossus", which reads: "Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free."
— The New Yorker (@NewYorker) June 21, 2018
The magazine's art editor Francoise Mouly writes, "In recent years, the artist Barry Blitt has become known for his satire, which skewers, in soft watercolors, those in or adjacent to power. But Blitt, who began working for the magazine in 1992, has always been more than a comic artist, and this week’s cover features a sombre touch."
Blitt adds that he doesn't watch television to keep up with politics because "it’s always people yelling at each other or—worse—people agreeing with each other. There’s always a background drone of outrage, it seems. Stories like this, obviously, are different. The outrage and disgust is justified and real, and needs to be paid attention to."
Last year, Gothamist asked Blitt if he felt that President Trump was "beyond satire." He answered:
Yeah all the time. It seems like he's getting more unsatireable by the day. He's just become so ridiculous that it's almost pointless, you know? Someone compared arguing with Sarah Palin to trying to play chess with a squirrel. I think this is kind of similar to that. It doesn't matter what he does, how bad it is, or how ridiculous, it doesn't seem to make a difference. He can get away with it, you know? There are certain comedians who can get away with stuff, and others who can't, and it seems like he can away with anything, the rules don't mean anything, and it has become pointless.