Five Minutes with Political Cartoonist Aaron Pascaner
Knightly News: Hey, Aaron.
Aaron Pascaner: Hello.
KN: How long have you been at Pace?
AP: I’ve been at Pace since pre first. Uh… you know. I’ve had some good experiences.
KN: What are some of those experiences?
AP: That’s a hard question. I have had the same friends my whole life, which is really special. That’s one giant experience I guess.
KN: How long have you been creating political cartoons?
AP: Oh, wow. A very long time. I’ve been drawing ever since I was little, but you know politics.
KN: What do you mean “but you know politics?” Can you elaborate on that?
AP: Of course, I can elaborate. I meant that I always keep up with the news in order to keep my political cartoons up to date.
KN: What news outlets do you follow?
AP: I watch CNN, Lester Holt and MSNBC. I do not watch Fox News. They spill lies and conspiracy theories.
KN: That’s a bold statement. What is so intriguing to you about political cartooning? What do you love about it?
AP: I like to criticize what’s happening in the world through humor, and cartooning is a good way to do that. I wouldn’t say I’m the best drawer, but it’s not really about the drawing. It’s more about the idea and the message the cartoonist is trying to convey.
KN: Are you inspired by any famous cartoonists?
AP: Eh… not really. I like to watch some stuff related to a mixture of comedy and politics. I watch “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver” and shows with a similar premise. Oh wait! I actually just conducted an interview to help get me into college with Mike Luckovich. He’s been a political cartoonist for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution for the last 30 years. I really like his cartoons, and he has actually really influenced my work.
KN: What else do you do besides political cartoons?
AP: I was a part of the Pace cross country team this semester, and I’m a lifeguard.
KN: What was your favorite part of cross country?
AP: I started out with a certain timed mile, and I beat that time by the end of the season.
KN: How fast was your original timed mile?
AP: Woah. We do not need to get into that, but I did beat it by four minutes. [Falls out of chair.]
KN: You OK?
AP: Yeah. It’s just a metaphor for my life.
KN: Tell me more about lifeguarding. What exactly do you do?
AP: I lifeguard at the Jewish Community Center of Atlanta over summer which has been very fulfilling. I also work at the YMCA on Saturdays from 2-6 and Sundays from 8-12. It’s so fun to just sit in a chair for hours.
KN: What has inspired your personal style? In particular, the look you are wearing today.
AP: They are my grandfather’s clothes that I found in my dad’s closet. People say my hair and my clothes give off a lazy vibe. The other opinion is that I often look like an old man. That makes sense because the clothes are my grandfather’s. I have accepted it. It’s vintage.
KN: You also have a very unique taste in music. What would you say is your favorite genre?
AP: I love classic rock and psychedelic music. It’s pretty outdated. It’s definitely not like the rap everyone is listening to today, but I appreciate it more.
KN: Anything else you’d like to tell me?
AP: This interview has been basically my whole life summed up, so no.
KN: Well, thank you for your time, Aaron.
AP: No problem. Thanks for interviewing me.