Tag Archives: gun violence

Wash Me and I Will be Pure

Has the purported privilege of your race, your culture, your gender, your sexual orientation, your socioeconomic status, or your occupation got you feeling the stain of social guilt? Does the comfort of your upper middle class existence leave your conscience dirty when confronted with bad news on the TV?

Well! Wash those feelings away in just a few minutes! Pull out your laziest soapbox, and purge your conscience. You’ll feel fresh, radiant, clean, and righteous, when you’ve washed yourself in the fountain of virtue!

White Rain! Cheap! Affordable! Easy! The preferred soapbox of old, white, middle-class, heterosexual men everywhere!

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On Smolderin’ Pond

Valerie Pond’s lifeless body is discovered in today’s strip by… Super Chicken?!

You knew the job was dangerous when you took it, Val! Maybe set your stemware down before you go wrestling someone for a gun next tim… oh, sorry. I suppose it is too late for that. Brinkel wasn’t much for privacy either, his bedroom was open and his gun collection was accessible? Laughable negligence even if he was not guilty.

Have a happy 4th of July all you SOSFers! Don’t be like TB is with his story arcs, please be/travel/revel safe…

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Ascent of a Woman

TB is a master of “tell, don’t show”, a story-telling characteristic that seems like it might be a nearly serviceable way to set up a murder-mystery, as ill-suited as it is for comic strips. In today’s strip, however, he is employing the unusual technique of “show and tell explicitly in an unengaging way”. As I said yesterday, subtlety is dead in the Batiukverse. Now we’re just playing out the week(s) to find out if these filmstrip-bordered panels are Cindy’s in-production documentary, a documentary that Cindy and Jessica are watching, or a procrastinating fever dream that even Pete and Durwood would “stand in line” for.

I must admit, though, I do like Hagar The Horrible there in panel 3 and his Petri dish stemware. Looks like it holds nearly one whole ounce!

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Bleat for Security

Link to today’s strip

“Americans used to roar like lions for liberty; now we bleat like sheep for security.”

― Norman Vincent Peale

It’s interesting how the force of this protest has waned over the last three days. On Tuesday we were ‘urging action to stop’, yesterday we were ‘urging action to prevent’ and now we’re not ‘urging action’ at all anymore, just ‘voicing concerns about’ tomorrow we’ll just be ‘drawing attention to guns,’ and the slow march of passivity will continue on.

I wondered if there was ‘much to show for’ school shooting legislation from last year to this year. Because I don’t trust Tom Batiuk one bit to do any real research on what he’s claiming. There has been quite a bit.. At least on the gun control side. Maybe Bernie is one of those who argues a gun control is more a mental health issue. Oh, wait, no, there’s been significant movement on that front too. This article even mentions the students March for Our Lives having an effect.

Of course, you could make the argument that a lot of these proposed laws haven’t been finalized yet, or that all of this isn’t enough. But that isn’t what Bernie here is saying. What he’s really saying is, school shootings are bad enough to protest but not serious enough to research.

I look forward to the senior trip to DC, where the students will protest the lack of a WWII memorial while standing in it’s fountain.

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No Conflict of Interest.

Link to today’s strip

What is going on with Les’ face in panel two today? I can only guess that Ayers saw the word vomit in the speech bubble and decided to give Les an expression to match. It’s a pretty apt depiction since Les is just regurgitating yesterday’s substance.

And good old principal Nate today, distilling into one word the thing most perniciously wrong with Funky Winkerbean. Les presents him with something potentially contentious, and Nate agrees.

No argument about the students’ obligation to be in school, the potential debasing of non-violent rule breaking as a tool of last resort, or the use of the school’s own vehicle of propaganda to take a position on a divisive issue where the student body is likely not unified in viewpoint. Nate agrees. All ‘good’ people agree. Everyone seen is in agreement. The potential opponents are an unseen undefined ‘badness’ that must not be personified.

This is worse storytelling than the Big Gay Prom arc, because at least in that we had a strawwoman in opposition. She was about as nuanced as a shrieking harpy ruining everyone’s lunch, but she was there. Opposition leads to drama. It resists the goal of the protagonists, making them work for what they want. And, most importantly to Batiuk’s goals, it gives what they’re fighting for weight. Debate lets the characters themselves tell the audience why: Why is a walkout the best way for these students to protest school shootings? Does anyone think there is a better way? Is there any specific legislation or legislators these kids are targeting? We’ll probably never know, because so far no one asked.

If Les and Bernie had to convince the Principal to allow the editorial, if they had to explain themselves to parents or disagreeing students, or if they had to potentially sacrifice something to stage this protest, then the ‘protest’ might seem like something more than what it is: hollow, passionless, consequence free virtue-signaling.

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