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A cartoon depicting the crew of the Indian cargo ship involved in the Baltimore bridge collapse has ignited a firestorm of criticism, raising questions about racism and media insensitivity.

The cartoon, created by Foxford Comics, portrays Indian crew members in stereotypical clothing, appearing panicked and helpless as their ship collides with the bridge. The insensitive portrayal, coupled with the tragic nature of the real-world event, has been widely condemned.

Despite its offensive nature, the cartoon garnered over 4 million views, highlighting the potential for online content to spread negativity even as it fuels outrage. This incident comes at a time when US-India relations are already navigating sensitivities around “American exceptionalism”.

The Baltimore bridge collapse was a devastating event, and the portrayal of the Indian crew members in the cartoon is not only insensitive but also demonstrably false. Reports indicate that the Indian crew acted swiftly to alert authorities, potentially saving lives.

The incident raises a broader question about the prevalence of racial stereotypes in American media. The outrage surrounding this cartoon should serve as an opportunity for the US to address and dismantle these ingrained biases within its own society.