Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Sad Day

I have a column in a good dope magazine, Skunk. You should all go out and buy it just to show support. They use my old cohorts at High Times, Steve Wishnia and Bill Weinberg, two of the best drug war journalists ever, plus let me have the column, so I'm a fan.
   Today I turned in my new column. It won't show up for six weeks, but we're intimate friends, here, right? So I'm gonna share it with you and if it's over the top, stupid, whatever, well, then I'm over the top and stupid. But this was what I was thinking about today, two days after the Boston Marathon Bombing.


The Boston Marathon Bombings and the Puppet Masters

By Peter Gorman

Well, the world is suffering today. As this is being written, the FBI, bomb squads and a host of other law enforcement groups are working their asses off to try to find who blew up the people at the Boston Marathon. The death toll as of this writing is three, though by the time you read it that number may be higher. It was a vile, horrific thing visited down from hell on innocent people out celebrating the human body and its fantastic abilities. And yes, we have seen similar scenes all over the world. The United States has been responsible for thousands of them. Crazy people have been responsible for many of them. Military leaders, would-be martyrs on suicide missions for their gods regularly blow up innocents at markets all over the Middle East, sending body parts and burned flesh to nestle among the fruits and vegetables for sale.
   All of it is wretched beyond imagination. If people who committed these actions had only taken a moment to realize that the innocents who are maimed, who die, who leave their families with holes in them that will never be healed, that those people they are going to kill are not the problem. The puppet masters are the problem. The people who take not just a larger share of the cake then they should but take millions of shares of the cake, leaving the rest of us to fight it out over the crumbs—and leaving people angry and frustrated and starving and crazy because there really isn’t enough if someone takes almost all of it.
    The puppet masters can then rile those people into a frenzy, pointing fingers of blame at anyone different, claiming those are the people who have taken all the cake. Those are the enemies. Those are the people starving your children. And they back their positions up with books they claim were written by the hand of their gods to justify the vilification and slaughter of those enemies.
    Hundreds of blacks were hung from trees and lampposts by poor people convinced that those blacks were taking what should have properly been theirs. The genocide in Rwanda in 1994 saw the poor Hutu people convinced that the Tutsi people intended to enslave them and once riled enough, the Hutu’s slaughtered more than 500,000 Tutsis in just about 100 days. In truth, it was just the puppet masters controlling the strings out of desperation for power, control and wealth. It’s always the puppet masters taking too much, leaving too little for the poor to share and then pointing fingers. If they didn’t take so much there would be more than enough to go around. We can grow enough rice and wheat for everyone to eat. We can grow tomatoes and garlic and potatoes and spinach and share fish and apples and melons—if only some people weren’t taking the lion’s share for themselves.
   I don’t want to get all religious on you here, but I was raised Catholic—altar boy and everything, and no, I never met a priest who was out of line sexually. One of the stories I liked best was the loaves and fishes. In that one, Jesus of Nazareth finds himself on a hill with thousands of people there to listen to him and whoever else was on the bill. But nobody hired any vendors and so people got hungry and angry then, as the story goes, Jesus of Nazareth got hold of a couple loaves of bread and a few fish and began distributing them and he never ran out. It was called a miracle, that he could multiply food like that.
   I never really believed that was a miracle. If he had superpowers then it was an easy thing for him to do. But I did think a miracle occurred. In my little kid’s mind I pictured that when people got hungry and started to get antsy and angry, that Jesus of Nazareth, without superpowers, simply looked out over the large crowd and probably told them that if everyone shared all the food they had with no holding back, then there would be plenty for everyone. And I always pictured people slowly bringing out their stash—some with enough food for 20, others with just a couple of figs—and beginning to share until it got contagious and all the food came out and then yes, there was plenty for everyone. Because there always is if people share.
    But there are those who don’t share, people who never have enough. Who would rather let the bread go stale and the fish rot before they’d give it up to the next hungry guy. And those are the people who point the finger at someone a little different and tell the hungry person that that other person is responsible for their hunger. And then, well, someone decides they ought to blow up strangers watching a marathon.
   It’s a sad day. It’s a sad day every day because every day someone is pointlessly killing someone else at the urging of the puppet masters who need to deflect their responsibility before they are seen for what they really are.
   I was thinking about the bombings at the Boston Marathon—just two days old at this minute—and wondering who had convinced someone, the person or persons responsible that by hurting, maiming, killing strangers the scales would be in better balance. It wasn’t necessarily a particular person personally convincing someone to do the deed, it just needed to be a seed implanted that grew to the point where the horror looked like the best solution to the person making the bombs.
   I was also thinking about how many people were frightened so badly by the puppet masters when people started smoking a lot of marijuana and dropping copious amounts of LSD that they allowed and even encouraged laws to be enacted that criminalized a huge swath of the population. The politicians couldn’t act on their own, so they needed to convince the non-pot smokers that the pot smokers were bad. More than that, evil. More than that: Evil and they were going to get your son and daughter to join in their evil and be like Charles Manson and so they needed to be locked up. And to lock up all those people a couple of million new prison beds were going to need to be built. And the non-pot smokers believed it and went along with it and so millions of people wound up in the criminal justice system—emotionally maimed, scarred, sometimes forever.
    They are the same puppet masters. It wasn’t done with bombs or machetes or drone strikes, but it tore a nation apart and allowed those puppet masters to deflect from the real horror of what they were doing, from raping the environment to starting wars for oil. Taking not just a bigger portion, but nearly the whole damned cake.
    People of Boston: Peace
    To those who died there and who die needlessly every day: Rest in Peace. Maybe the rest of us can work to see that less killing, less hurting takes place tomorrow.


Unknown said...

Hello Peter

Sorry for my bad english but i need your help. My name is Boris and I'am 33 years old, I have problem with my health and i need spiritual guidance. I'm thinking to take ayahuasca trip, and I think now is the good time. You wrote in one of your articles story about don Julio, i'm interesting to meet him, or his son, if that is possible of course.

Best Regards

Peter Gorman said...

Boris: Write me at peterg9 at I've got two trips coming up, one in June and one in July. Maybe they would fit what you want/need.
Peter G