Robb Armstrong, creator of the cartoon Jump Start, has disavowed his former friend Dilbert cartoonist Scott Adams and is leading the ‘black sharpie revolt’ against him.
Adams is currently embroiled in a public scandal following advice he dolled out last week when he told white people ‘to get the hell away from black people,’ citing a poll that found nearly half of black people are not ok with white people.
After hearing about his former friend’s rant and reading the details, Armstrong told the Washington Post: ‘My heart sank at first, then broke.
‘I had to accept the reality that my friend from the early days was gone. In his place was a soulless, heartless racist.’
Armstrong’s cartoon Jump Start is a daily comic strip that portrays the lives of a young black couple as they try to balance work with raising their children.
Robb Armstong: the Jump Start cartoonist and former friend of Scott Adams disavowed the Dilbert creator and launched the black sharpie revolt against him
Armstrong, a black man, and Adams entered the cartooning scene together years ago and had remained friends since.
As recently as 2016, Adams wrote a complimentary blurb for Adams’ book, ‘Fearless: A Cartoonist’s Guide to Life.’
Now, Armstrong is urging his readers and those who own the book to cross out Adams’ blurb.
‘Use a thick black marker to stand up against racism,’ said Armstrong.
Adams had written that Fearless was an ‘inspiration’ that contained ‘some of the most insightful cartooning advice you will ever read.’
As the backlash continues, Adams wrote on Twitter that ‘Dilbert has been cancelled from all newspapers, websites, calendars, and books because I gave some advice everyone agreed with. (My syndication partner canceled me.)’
Additionally, Penguin Random House announced that its imprint Portfolio will no longer publish the Adams book ‘Reframe Your Brain,’ the Wall Street Journal reported Monday.
Adams’ current troubles erupted after Dilbert was canned by 77 newspapers in September due to its increasingly controversial plot lines, including one about a black character who identifies as white.
The comic has been in circulation since 1989 and frequently pokes fun at office culture.
During Adams’s race rant, which was posted to his personal YouTube page, which has 118,000 subscribers, he called black people a ‘hate group.’
The 65-year-old said,’There’s no fixing this. This can’t be fixed … You just have to escape. So that’s what I did, I went to a neighborhood where I have a very low black population.’
On Saturday Gannett, which owns over 100 newspapers, confirmed it was dropping Dilbert over the controversy.
‘Recent discriminatory comments by the creator, Scott Adams, have influenced our decision to discontinue publishing his comic,’ the organization said in a statement Saturday to The New York Post.
‘While we respect and encourage free speech, his views do not align with our editorial or business values as an organization.
Darrin Bell, creator of Candorville and the only black cartoonist to win the Pulitzer Prize for editorial cartooning, told the Washington Post on Saturday that Adams ‘is a disgrace’ and compared Adams’s views to the Jim Crow era.
He said that he plans to spoof Dilbert in upcoming cartoons.
Scott Adams is believed to have amassed a $70 million fortune for his beloved ‘Dilbert’ comics which have been in circulation since 1989
Armstrong posted a picture of his black sharpie revolt. He crossed out Adams’ endorsement of his 2016 book, ‘Fearless’
Armstrong’s cartoon Jump Start is a daily comic strip that portrays the lives of a young black couple as they try to balance work with raising their children
Adams appeared to double down on the remarks on Twitter at the weekend. ‘A lot of people are angry at me today but I haven’t yet heard anyone disagree,’ he told his 867,000 followers
Dilbert has been featured in newspapers across 57 countries, and in 19 languages – and there are more than 20 million Dilbert books and calendars in print
Adams appeared to double down on the remarks on Twitter at the weekend.
‘A lot of people are angry at me today but I haven’t yet heard anyone disagree,’ he told his 867,000 followers.
‘I make two main points: 1. Treat everyone as an individual (no discrimination).
‘2. Avoid any group that doesn’t respect you. Does anyone think that is bad advice?’
Later in the day he posted: ‘Has anyone checked the price of free speech lately? It’s worse than eggs.’
It comes five months after Lee enterprises also dropped the cartoon from its newspapers.
The media company owns 77 newspapers across the country – including The Buffalo News, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, and the Arizona Daily Sun – and had been publishing Adams’ jokes about the corporate ladder for years.