The 13-year-old cartoonist Sasha Matthews (courtesy Scott Matthews)

Today, thousands of students are walking out of their schools to join in a demonstration against gun violence, exactly a month after 17 students and teachers died in a horrific shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, in Parkland, Florida. One of the student protesters in New York is Sasha Matthews, a 13-year-old cartoonist who has become well-known as an artist and activist. She’s wearing a t-shirt printed with one of her own comics, which she drew in response to last month’s shooting, and President Trump’s subsequent suggestion that teachers take up arms at school.

According to her father, Scott Matthews, Sasha has been drawing cartoons since she was 10. He told Hyperallergic that her work tends to deal with social justice issues; this one takes aim at the National Rifle Association. (Sasha made news earlier this week for pushing Scholastic to revise its rigid copyright policies.) In “An NRA Dream Come True,” the wide-eyed, gun-toting students and teachers look eerily cheerful. “Some might see her comic and say ‘that’s not funny,’ but it’s not meant to be funny,” Sasha’s father said in an email. “It’s meant to be unsettling, and (at least for me) it is indeed rather unsettling.”

Sasha Matthews, “An NRA Dream Come True” (courtesy Rumble Comics and Sasha Matthews)

Elena Goukassian is an arts writer based in Brooklyn. Originally from Bulgaria, she grew up in Washington state and lived in Washington, DC before moving to New York in 2017. Her writing has also appeared...

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