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1. Editorial cartoonists often use humor to make light of issues that aggravate people. One of the types of humor they use is irony. Irony is defined as when the opposite of what you expect to happen occurs. Describe the irony in this cartoon.

CHALLENGE QUESTION: Where does the phrase “Peace on earth, good will to men” originate?

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

Cartoon by Gary Varvel


1. Christmas is the day when Christians celebrate the birth of Jesus. Most people refer to “the holiday spirit” – the expectation is that people are nicer at this time of year. Instead, the cartoonist portrays them as shoving and fighting to get the best deals ahead of those around them – the opposite of “peace and good will.”

CHALLENGE QUESTION: The phrase “Peace on earth, good will to men” originates in the Bible (Luke 2: 8-14). This passage comes right after Jesus is born:

“Now there were in the same country shepherds living out in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. And behold, an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were greatly afraid. Then the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be the sign to you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger.”

And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying:
“Glory to God in the highest,
And on earth peace, goodwill toward men!”