Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Jihads and Indians

Bizarro is brought to you today by Tortelli High Speed Piano Company.

I find our nation's relationship with American Indians (Native Americans, First Peoples, etc.) interesting. Before we open up the floor for discussion, here is a quick synopsis of my limited knowledge in this area:
1. Europeans steal continent and attempt to annihilate its inhabitants
2. The ones that escape death are driven into poverty
3. The descendants of these Europeans feel guilty
4. They give the descendants of these original inhabitants from whom the land was stolen the right to do something that is illegal for the rest of the population.

Step four is where it gets a bit strange. I'm not passing judgment on it, I just think it odd.

Moving on, I am all for legalizing gambling, prostitution and recreational drugs. Even though I'm not a fan of any of these leisure time activities, I think consenting adults should be allowed to do what they want as long as it doesn't hurt others. Which means you don't outlaw drinking, you outlaw drinking and driving. You don't outlaw drugs, you outlaw driving while tripping. You don't outlaw prostitution, you outlaw selling your wares without regular medical checkups, and leaving the house in hotpants that are clearly too small for your ample booty.

That being said, I don't much understand the fun of either gambling or prostitution. With gambling, I can't help seeing it as a hole in the ground that you throw your money into on the slim chance that the hole is not only not too deep to reach into and get your money back, but that there might be more money already down there. I've generally found money hard to come by in my life and giving it to someone else without much hope of any return doesn't seem fun.

Regarding prostitution, I don't understand having relations with someone who is only pretending to want to have relations with me. It makes me feel impolite, like I am inconveniencing someone else for my own selfish needs. To my mind, much of the fun of coital activity is that the other person is having a good time, too. I felt this same sort of shame when I took tennis lessons years ago – I loved playing tennis with friends, but hated hitting with a pro because I knew she was only doing it for the money and wasn't having any fun. A wealthy friend of mine once said of my views on this that I "just don't understand the master/slave relationship." Creepy. Maybe that's why he's wealthy and I'm not.

Still, I can't help but feel these things are illegal purely because of a combination of fear and religious notions. When communities do legalize these activities, they don't go up in flames any faster than the ones ruled by churchy notions. And when societies let religion dominate law, eventually all hell breaks loose.

I'd choose casinos over jihads any day. But then I'm just a fringe liberal.

(NOTE: These comments are not meant as a condemnation of personal faith but rather the practice of using religious ideas to govern.)


doug nicodemus said...

that was real funny. why can't we be in san francisco at the same time? o'well life on the bay is grand

isee3dtoo said...

I always thought it was funny that when I was taking a probability class as an undergraduate our professor invited a so called expert on gambling to speak to us. This expert explained how to get the best odds possible on just about every type of legal gambling available at the Nevada casinos. This expert was paid by service clubs and other patrons of the casinos to come and speak to them as well. Now what was funny about it was that the expert was a 70 year old Catholic Nun.

Also the best day to visit Las Vegas is Easter, the casinos are empty because Catholics don't gamble on that Easter Sunday.

Sorry Say-ette if you already knew all of that. :-)

Unknown said...

Great cartoons. :)

However, as for gambling is concerned, there are two reasons to gamble, at least that I'm aware of. The first is to hope you'll make a million bucks. That kind is almost always going to end up in disappointment and being broke. The other is to have fun. It's just playing a game, that's all. If you're not expecting a monetary payout at the end, you can have fun with it. Sure, it's not everybody's cup of tea, but neither is being part of 22 guys crashing into each other just to push an oblate bladder to one end of a field.

As for the master/slave mentality, most workers are slaves and don't enjoy their work. I'm sure that very few factory workers enjoy the daily grind of doing the same thing over and over and over again. Virtually anything that we use is brought to you by those who don't enjoy their jobs.

Jeremy said...

Very good insight, Dan.

The Native American time line seems correct. The 4th item in the list is obviously an exaggeration since what we really did was allow them to have sovereignty over portions of land and create their own rules. Be it gambling or gay marriage. Its more that they didn't illegalize it than they legalized it.

I am with you on the prostitution. It just doesn't sound very interesting. Its also very expensive from what I have gathered! I have gambled a few times with $20. Once my wife was able to win $60. The rest of the time we stayed for an hour (Thats about as long as I could stand the cigarette smoke) and left with what we had.

As for religion, this is the sad part. Its true. Religion has been one of the biggest suppressors of these types of activities despite Jesus have a fairly open view on the subjects. In the first book, Genesis there is a very clear story of a guy picking up a hooker who happened to be his niece-in-law and paying her with a goat. God didn't punish the uncle but he punished the girl's late husband for being "wicked (e.i. pulling out as he came)" by death.

Now tell me which part of that makes prostitution bad, please. Its almost as if its better to do a hooker than jack off. Onan's case is cited as the main reason masturbation is bad by most conservatives.

Anonymous said...

A quick question. In your Noah's Ark - ONe More Theory cartoon I can only find 3 of th 4 symbols your autograph tell are in there. I can spot the K2, dynamite and pie....what's the other one?

I'm going crazy here

lambelly said...

the fish is the fourth symbol.

Anonymous said...

Only two comments:
1) Who knew ladybugs fucked?
2) I'm still trying to decide whether South Alabama is real or imaginary.

Anonymous said...

Very good drawing! Especially here in New Mexico (USA).
Bad news, for me anyway. (I'm against gambling on principle.) The Navajo people have opened their first casino; they got along without it until now. I believe the only NM tribe still w/o gambling is the Zuni, on the NM-AZ border. BTW they are on their own ancestral land; the Navajo are on reservations.
I plotzed* at the Noah's Ark drawing- excellent! Wanted to tell you that before the fundamentalists jihaded y'all. :-)

*–verb (used without object) Slang. to collapse or faint, as from surprise, excitement, or exhaustion. Origin:
1940–45, Americanism; < Yiddish platsn lit., to crack, split, burst < MHG blatzen, platzen

Anonymous said...

The Navajo are one of the most (if not THE most) impoverished group of people in this country. They probably see gambling as a last resort that won't make them rich, but will get some of the bills paid at least. They don't really live near a big enough population center to make it hugely profitable and they're getting into the game (so to speak) rather late. The market is saturated.

Sara B. said...

Last week I had a facial massage for the first time, and I found the situation somewhat akward. Physically it was wonderful for me; quite possibly a bit straining or just tedious for her. Mentally, I was relaxing without a care in the world; she had to concentrate on what I was paying her to do. Trying to enjoy it anyway really got me thinking about the master/slave relationship and, in a more relevant comparison, about prostitution - not prostitutes, but clients. What exactly are they in it for?

Sara B. said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Janta said...

I'm just amazed by the way the international (and I'm guessing national?) media have completely ignored the fact that the Lakota have declared independence from the U.S. last year and are petitioning the United Nations to have their sovereignty recognised. See here

Anonymous said...

I always thought casinos and tobacco were the ultimate revenge...

Anonymous said...

Fish as the fourth symbol?

I thought the only symbols Dan used were: the dynamite, UFO, rabbit, upside down bird, eyeball, slice of pie & the K2....I've never seen a fish before?

isee3dtoo said...

Hidden Symbols:

There are 10 of them see: for a list.

I hate it when the arrow of vulnerability or the crown or power are in play. Those are hard for me to spot usually. The fish of humility catches me sometimes but not that one.

Good luck hunting.

Rebecca C. Brown said...

I'm with you on all points, Dan, except decriminalizing prostitution. The problem with prostitution isn't that people are having consensual anonymous sex or enjoying themselves. For most of the women and men who are prostitutes, the sex is in no way enjoyable and only marginally consensual; prostitutes are exploited and frequently physically abused by their "bosses." People "choose" to go into prostitution the same way people "choose" to make 49 cents an hour in a factory in Indonesia.

Anonymous said...

"1. Europeans steal continent and attempt to annihilate its inhabitants."

Did Europeans really attempt to kill off the Native Americans? Or, did immigrants come over and expose them to illnesses for which they had no natural defenses and they died as a result?

Anonymous said...

Hidden symbols? Really? Didn't we leave this behind as adults when we moved past Highlights for Children?

Cecilie Lolk Hjort said...

I just found your blog and have been reading my way down the list of posts, so forgive me for commenting irrelevantly late (and long) on this; But I just happen to be a hooker myself and would like to provide my two cents, if you're still wondering about what's the fun in prostitution. :)

To me, when people wonder what's the fun in sleeping with someone who's just pretending to enjoy it - because how can you be enjoying it if you're charging? - it seems as strange as if I said that I don't like reading cartoons, because the person who drew it obviously only pretended to like doing so, since they were getting paid. I haven't gone into the sex business because I *don't* like having sex with random strangers, but because I *do*. I know it sounds completely out there, but I find that's generally a pretty good basis for a career choice. ;)

Sure, you can find a hooker who doesn't enjoy having sex with you, just as you can find a store clerk who refuses to aknowledge you with anything but a blank stare and whatever polite phrases will make you go away as fast as possible. It's never hard to find people who aren't doing their jobs well, because it's not what they want to be doing (after all, what most people want to be doing is lounging around on some sandy beach with a cocktail with one of those umbrellas in it). But with prostitution as with anything else (including tennis), that's a matter of not doing the job well - it's not something that's in the job description. Most johns by far will agree wholeheartedly with you that sex is only any fun if the other person is having fun, too. :)