The fundraiser continues Furie’s effort to “take back” his character after the frog was co-opted as an emblem of supremacy and hate, eventually becoming thrust into controversy during the 2016 presidential election, with both sides referencing Pepe.
“Before Pepe the Frog was a meme designated a hate symbol by the Anti-Defamation League,” Furie writes, “he began life as a blissfully stoned frog.”
Pepe’s wide recognition as a mascot of hate was “a nightmare, so I killed him off,” continues Furie. The funding campaign’s pledge rewards include that original “Death of Pepe” art.
The cartoonist wants to fund a new zine “that shall shine a light in all this darkness.”
The campaign will run through the end of July.