December 19, 2006 -- Yesterday, John McPherson's "Close to Home" comic showed an EMT giving a stretcher-bound patient a choice: "Mercy Hospital" was "20 minutes closer," but the nurses at "Saratoga Hospital" were "really hot." We get that it's a "joke." But it still suggests that the main thing about nurses is their physical beauty, reinforcing a tenacious stereotype of brainless female sexuality. Today the Post-Star of Glen Falls, NY, ran a fair piece by Charles Fiegl about the Center's objections, which include that the comic feeds a poor overall media image that impedes nurses' efforts to get adequate resources. Editor and Publisher (E&P) covered the Post-Star's article with today's piece "Comic's Comment About Nurses Stirs Big Reaction." E&P noted that "Close to Home" appears in about 700 newspapers. The Post-Star reported that McPherson based the comic on his desire to impress the nurses at the actual nearby Saratoga Hospital. One nurse from that hospital reportedly said she and her colleagues really are "very hot," which is "how we get our patients to come to Saratoga," though she added that the nurses there "also provide great care." Given this striking expression of self-respect, we know an Italian political leader who might well consider Saratoga for his next cardiac procedure.
See the article "Cartoonist hits 'close to home': " by Charles Fiegl of the Glens Falls Post-Star. Archived in pdf format. It was reprinted in the Universal Press Syndicate, also covered in Editor & Publisher on Dec. 19 and on WSYR Channel 9, the ABC affiliate in Syracuse.