LI paper depicts Obamas as black sitcom actors

(AP) - A weekly newspaper publisher on NewYork's Long Island is defending its decision to portray PresidentBarack Obama and his wife as characters from the TV sitcom"Sanford and Son."

Some local political leaders and others contend it's a racistdepiction.

A photo spread in the weekly Smithtown Messenger features"before and after" photos of six presidents and their wives,starting with Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter and ending with the Obamas.

The "after" photo of the Obamas is a shot from the 1970s show,with Redd Foxx as Fred Sanford and LaWanda Page as Sanford'ssister-in-law, Aunt Esther.

Publisher and part-owner Phillip Sciarello callsthe photo political satire and says it isn't racist. But he saysthe newspaper will run a retraction for anyone who was offended.

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