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1. To what on-going news story is the cartoonist referring?

2. Tone is the attitude a cartoonist takes towards a subject. Which pair of words best describes the tone of this cartoon? Explain your answer.
a) solemn/serious
b) condescending/mocking
c) disgusted/cynical
d) sarcastic/humorous

3. Which comic device does the cartoonist use to make his point? Explain your answer.
a) irony
b) exaggeration
c) parody
d) pun

Scroll down to the bottom of the page for the answers.

Cartoon by Joe Heller


1.  The cartoonist is referring to the recent report that the National Security Agency’s surveillance network has the capacity to spy on 75 percent of all U.S. Internet traffic.
[The Wall Street Journal reported that The National Security Agency – which possesses only limited legal authority to spy on U.S. citizens – has built a surveillance network that covers more Americans’ Internet communications than officials have publicly disclosed, current and former officials say. The system has the capacity to reach roughly 75% of all U.S. Internet traffic in the hunt for foreign intelligence, including a wide array of communications by foreigners and Americans. In some cases, it retains the written content of emails sent between citizens within the U.S. and also filters domestic phone calls made with Internet technology, these people say.]

2.  d) sarcastic/humorous

3.  b) exaggeration