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Behind on the comic

I went to sleep last night without finishing yesterday's comic. I planned to complete it in the morning, but Lara is sick, and looking after the baby took more of my time today than normal. I got yesterday's strip done late this afternoon, now it's time to start thinking about what to do for today's strip.

The baby is down for the night (knock on wood), and I think Lara will soon join him.

For today's TOTD, I deviated from the usual juxtaposition of quotes and fired off the following to the TOTD readership:

If you oppose the World War on (Some) Drugs, that means you should support medical marijuana initiatives, doesn't it? I don't think so.

Doesn't the idea of making special exceptions to the federal marijuana laws in order to alleviate the suffering of sick people take for granted the legitimacy of the larger Drug War agenda? Doesn't this approach give a tacit nod of approval to the booming prison labor industry, the booming property seizure industry, and the continued extension of US military hegemony throughout South and Central America?

Food for thought.

Demian, a long-time TOTD subscriber wrote back to say:

Yes and no. medical marijuana is a wedge issue, one that could open the populace up to the idea that pot is not just benign but perhaps even healthful. it's a start. I'd like to see opiates and psychedelics legalized, too, but I don't expect that to happen until well after dope is decriminalized. we've been heavily indoctrinated during the last 30 years, and it's going to take time to purge "Just Say No" from our systems. medical marijuana is a baby step but it's in the right direction (unlike, say, the hemp movement, which approaches the issue obliquely). these are the first cracks in a crumbling foundation.

Well, this sent me into full on rant mode, and I wrote:

Medical Marijuana was the topic on Talk of the Nation today. One guest represented some non-governmental group of right wing ideology, the other represented the medical marijuana movement. The right winger accused the medical marijuana enthusiasts of using this issue as a false front for drug legalization, and the medical mj advocate denied it. Juan Williams asked the medical mj advocate if she favored marijuana legalization, and she said she hadn't made up her mind on the issue yet. Nonsense, she favors legalization, but she won't say so because the party line for the medical mjers is, "This is a medical issue."

Juan Williams, who seems to favor drug law reform in general asked repeatedly if this medical issue represented the camel's nose under the tent(or a "wedge" as you put it), the right winger called it like it is and said yes this is a ruse and a front for a larger agenda, and the medical advocate DENIED THIS OBVIOUS FACT, and in doing so pissed away her credibility. You know I oppose the drug war, but on this issue the right winger moralists are playing straighter pool than the so-called reformers.

Failing to frame control of one's own body as a civil liberties issue does us all an extreme disservice. It perpetuates and legitimizes the disingenuous assumptions that underlie public discourse on this issue. Half measures and coy faints while making placating gestures to the faulty underlying thinking that the federal government has ANY legitimate role in an individual's choice of intoxicants strikes me as about as useful and sensible as libertarians voting for Bush because he's marginally closer to the libertarian position on a few issues than Gore.

The industrial hemp advocates really want to open up a profitable new sector for American agriculture and manufacturing, and given the concerns they represent they present a very respectable and credible point of view. The medical marijuana folks reinforce the destructive underlying assumptions of the Drug War apologists while cynically using the suffering of others for their own gain. This tactic really sickens me.

I agree that the fact that "reformers" are succeeding with their efforts on a state level is a sign that things are changing for the better, but I don't support their efforts and cannot endorse their tactics.

I wrote the above rant, but I haven't sent it to Demian. My ISP's mail server has been down all day, so I haven't been able to send my rant.

Anyway, time to get busy on today's comic.

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