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San Diego civil rights activists plan next steps after controversial cartoon

shane harris.jpeg
Posted at 3:55 PM, Feb 25, 2019
and last updated 2019-02-25 20:27:50-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - Civil rights activists called for change Monday following the publication of a cartoon in the San Diego Union Tribune the group described as an “insulting image”.

Rev. Shane Harris, president of the People’s Alliance for Justice, and other San Diego leaders held a news conference after a meeting with UT publisher Jeff Light.

San Diego Union Tribune cartoonist Steve Breen created a picture of authors James Baldwin and Toni Morrison, and actor Jussie Smollett, with the title “Famous African American Story Tellers," according to Harris' email. The image was published Friday, Harris said.

"It was egregious to us all," Harris said at his news conference.

Smollett is accused of falsely reporting being attacked by two masked men in Chicago. He reportedly told police his attackers yelled racial and anti-gay slurs and referenced President Donald Trump's campaign slogan, according to the Associated Press.

Harris demanded last week that Smollett be fired from his role in the show, "Empire."

Monday, Harris said Breen apologized for the cartoon. Light also agreed to profile African-American leaders and initiatives in San Diego, Harris said.