Only by learning to live in harmony with your contradictions can you keep it all afloat. -Audre Lorde
I was lucky enough to see three of these at Standley Lake in March.
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I don’t like slap-stick humor.
I wince when watching the Three Stooges. I was the kid who covered her eyes when a piano fell on Wile E. Coyote or when Jerry set Tom on fire. I don’t laugh at Helen Keller jokes. Forest Gump makes me simultaneously sad and angry.
I don’t find humor in pain or violence. I don’t like exploiting weakness for humor.
So why did I find myself giggling at the spectacle of pot heads running away from gunshots in Denver this past 4-20?
Everyone knows this has been a rough year.
Kidnappings, murders, mass shootings, bombs, man hunts, wildfires, and earthquakes. Plus the less-sensational human rights issues, food politics, and the tension and stress of the election, and I’m exhausted.
It appears that I have hit my empathy limit. I’m guarding my compassion for family and friends. I was shocked to find myself giggling as I watched video of the fast exodus of the 420 rally. Since when do I laugh at violence?
I do not agree with what you have to say, but I’ll defend to the death your right to say it. -Voltaire
I voted for the legalization of marijuana, but I am very much Voltaire in this issue.
I feel strongly about individual freedoms. You want to smoke pot? Great. I want to eat foods that aren’t genetically modified. I want us both to have the freedom to make these choices.
But while supporting the choice to smoke pot, I have yet to meet a regular pot user who wasn’t using the drug as a way to avoid major parts of her life. I support conscious choices. I want us all to examine who we are and why we make the choices we make. Pot does not appear to be in line with the conscious, examined life.*
In short, I find it difficult to be empathetic to pot heads. Perhaps if I had more compassion reserves, if so many terrible things hadn’t already happened, I would feel more empathetic. But in this incident no one was killed, no families were devastated, no homes destroyed.
And I find it amusing.
More amusing than a one-ton weight falling on Coyote.
*I want to acknowledge that I have never personally met anyone who truly used marijuana for pain relief, but I don’t discount that for these people pot may assist with living a conscious life.