The police recently raided this house in Columbia, Missouri. A large group of police officers with nothing better to do stormed into action, kicking down the door to protect the community from a guy who likes to smoke a bit of dope. The most poignant thing we learn is that this evil marijuana-user loved his dog, a point he passionately made after he learned that the storm-trooper cops shot it, and all for what?
And keep in mind that this is how the drug police act when they know that there is a video camera running. Make no mistake that these cops were on their best behavior — this was a sanitized version of a raid.
As I’ve argued many times, it’s time to put an end to our pointless and violent “war on drugs.” There are many better ways to deal with the urge of some adults to get high using substances other than prescription drugs and alcohol. It’s time to just say no to the “war on drugs.”
I’m fully aware that we need brave police to protect us from violence and to solve crimes that have hurt people. I admire those brave police officers. We need sophisticated law enforcement to storm the ledger books of Wall Street Banks, and we don’t have nearly enough of them. But this kind of “police protection” is pointless. It doesn’t stop drug use–it only makes drug use violent. This use of police is as pointless as the practice of having traffic cops park behind bushes and waiting to nab people going 38 in a 35. This post is not pro-police or anti-police. It is anti-this type of activity by police.
There is a brand new sculpture park in downtown Saint Louis. It will officially open tomorrow. My family and I walked through tonight and we were wowwed.
What used to be a bunch of office buildings (many of them less than inspiring) were transformed into a deeply beautiful and light-hearted extension of “City Garden,” a modern sculpture park occupying two city blocks. I probably took about 150 photos tonight, but I’ll give you my favorite 16 [If you don't see the gallery, click here ].
I’m shaking my head, thinking that the creators really nailed it. In my mind, the function of art is to challenge but to also draw an audience. This new park has succeeded in transforming dozens of sterile buildings into the all-too-willing background for a place that beckons people of all ages to come play, to walk, to talk, to ponder, to touch the sculptures and to stand back and admire.
[Epilogue 7/9/09: City Garden has turned out to be a powerful people magnet. Works of art draw in people, who draw in more people. It is truly one of the most remarkable transformations to hit downtown St. Louis. What used to be two big starkly empty lots is now a comfortable and beautiful place, open every hour of every day, for people to view the sculptures, to find themselves and to find each other. A big congratulations to the Gateway Foundation!]
I’ve long subscribed to a rule which says that in political discourse whichever side calls the other side a “Nazi” first loses. The “Nazi rule” means that if you use it, you lose it. The “Nazi rule” holds true almost universally. I say “almost” because the one calling the other a “Nazi” first loses unless the first one using the term “Nazi” has it right.
Recently, a caller on Rush Limbaugh’s show identified himself as a Republican voter, a veteran and opposed to torture and blamed Rush and his ilk for the recent electoral woes of the Republican Party. The caller, ”Charles from Chicago”, called out Limbaugh for his support of torture and blamed Limbaugh and others which supported torture for why the American people have left the GOP in droves.
First, “Brainwashed” is the intensive forced indoctrination of new beliefs to have them supplant old beliefs.
Two nights ago, I was riding a bicycle past a midtown St. Louis landmark, Saint Francis Xavier Church, better known as “College Church,” due to its location on the Jesuit campus of St. Louis University. I know this campus well, in that I am a graduate of the SLU School of Law.
I’ve often enjoyed this architecture–I decided to stop to take this photo.
Today I am celebrating the inauguration of Barack Obama as President of the United States. I know that most of you already think of Obama’s inauguration as old news, even though it only happened a few short hours ago. Nonetheless, I am still celebrating and I’m proudly linking to a video of Obama’s swearing-in and [...]
I’m not claiming that non-believers and believers always get along, but I do know that they can get along. I know this for many reasons. Here’s my newest evidence: Last night I spoke about my lack of religious beliefs from the front of a packed church, during the religious service. How this could possibly be [...]
Here is the simple goal for those participating in Naked Bike Ride: Protest our dependency on oil and celebrate the power and individuality of our bodies. In America, most people tend to have a warped attitude toward bicycles. They see bicycles as toys and amusements, not as incredibly efficient and serious modes of transportation. More [...]