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It's one of the perils of working months ahead, a cursed confluence that has befallen many a syndicated strip cartoonist. But it's especially unfortunate when it occurs on a date as poignantly important as Veterans Day.
Real-world events -- from headlines to holidays -- can skew a cartoon for the worse. A particularly lamentable example: Today's "Garfield" makes a joke about "National Stupid Day" that some readers are taking offense at, viewing it as disrespectful toward veterans.
Pained by the mistiming, "Garfield" creator Jim Davis has issued this apology on Garfield.com and elsewhere:
Dear Friends, Fans and Veterans:
In what has to be the worst timing ever, the strip that runs in today's paper seems to be making a statement about Veterans. It absolutely, positively has nothing to do with this important day of remembrance.
Regarding today's Garfield comic strip , it was written almost a year ago and I had no idea when writing it that it would appear today -- of all days. I do not use a calendar that lists holidays and other notable days so when this strip was put in the queue, I had no idea it would run on Veterans Day. What are the odds? You can bet I'll have a calendar that lists everything by my side in the future.
My brother Dave served in Vietnam. My son James is a Marine who has had two tours of duty, both in Iraq and Afghanistan. You'd have to go a long way to find someone who was more proud and grateful for what our Veterans have done for all of us.
Please accept my apologies for any offense today's Garfield may have created. It was unintentional and regrettable.