This special edition of the “Smoke Signal” quarterly comics tabloid was created in response to the election of Donald Trump and shepherded into existence by New Yorker art editor Françoise Mouly and her daughter, author Nadja Spiegleman. Featuring cartoonist heavyweights like Roz Chast, Alison Bechdel, and Liana Finck, RESIST! is a collection of comics and illustrations by mostly female artists, including yours truly. The print edition was distributed on the day of the Women’s March with a circulation of over 60,000.
Dear Mr. Trump
New York Magazine published ten selections from this inaugural issue, along with artist statements. Here’s mine:
I'm a single woman, an artist, a freelancer, and a feminist. Each of these life choices will be more difficult with Trump in office. In the days following the election, I felt under attack. I started wearing a kind of armor, what I think of as my riot grrrl uniform: black jacket, black wool skirt, Doc Martens, pops of pink and fuchsia. "Trump can't stop me from being me," I thought, and that was a comfort. That thought extended itself into a realization that gave me more strength: Trump may seek to limit my options, but nobody can make my decisions for me, or force me to live a life I don't want. In short, "you can't make me." This became a mantra that helped me shake off that heavy sense of dread. It was defiant, but playful. Its levity scoffed at the enemy's threats, a little bit like Madeline, who said "pooh-pooh" to the tiger in the zoo. When I heard about Resist!, I thought about what I'd say to Trump, given a chance. This was my simple message, delivered in high contrast and bold color. I like to imagine him reading this, gritting his teeth, and shaking his fist like a comic-book villain as the hero flees the scene, victorious and free.