This was in response to Gulf War I, which kicked off during the Christmas break of my sophomore year at Emerson College. Everyone my age had grown up during the Cold War, and even though that seemed to be in the past tense now (the Berlin Wall having come down months earlier), we were all nervous. Was this going to be a big war? Was this going to be our Vietnam? What was going to happen?
What if they reinstated a draft?
In retrospect, it was a small enough war that that wasn’t going to happen, but we really had no idea if that was true at the time.
I remember I was with my dad and my sisters at McDonald’s in Gardner when we got to talking about the Gulf War, and it was at that time that I’d made my decision to follow the principle of ahimsa: no harm. I absolutely refuse to take another person’s life.
Oh, my college friends and I had those conversations when we got back to our dorms. By then Gulf War I was in full swing and would end within a few weeks. Some were for it, some were against it, some didn’t know, some didn’t give a shit.
My reaction to all that was to draw the above strip. Originally I’d posted it up on the door of my dorm room, where it got a huge response from passersby. A few suggested I submit it to our school paper, The Berkeley Beacon, which I did soon after, to more positive response. In fact, the one negative response I got was to some conservative-minded student who took offense to it because they’d somehow thought ‘The Ignorant’ person was meant to be Republican. Hey, you’re the one who assumed that, chief, not me.
I’m quite proud of that strip. It’s not my best artwork, but it’s one of my best works scriptwise.
So yeah. Writing this post at 7pm PT on 6 April, just as the current administration has launched a missile attack on Syria in response to the terrorist attack there earlier this week. I don’t know the details, so I’m not going to hem and haw and pontificate and indignate or whatever. Not right now.
I’ll be brutally honest, I don’t feel too optimistic about this event at the moment. Not because I’m a pacifist, but because a) I don’t trust this current administration to sharpen a fucking pencil and b) I’m really not looking forward to the Orgasmic Patriotism we may get as a response from the hard right. I’m afraid that there will be much dick swinging and flagwaving and no responsibility for the aftershock it causes.
I shall carry on. I still have my work to do on this new project of mine. Nothing’s going to take that away from me.
Here’s to hoping this ends peacefully.