Hello, welcome back to Real Heavy Politics - today is our one month anniversary - and thanks for your support and clicks over the 30 days. If today is your first visit - this is a blog that often posts about the beyond stupid marijuana laws of our country. And, as you can see from the title of today's post - here we go again.
First, when I was growing up in the 50's - marijuana didn't exist. LOL. Well, of course it existed, but as a 7 year old in 1959, not really. But, something happened in 1959 to `the media', including TV and movies, - The Beatniks. And, since many of today's smokers may not really be familiar with the Beatniks and the beginning of the mainstream coverage of the `drug movement' in general - let me provide some quick background.
In looking deeper into the background - `The Beat Generation' is a phrase used to describe several American writers of the mid-50's who wrote about a lifestyle that included a general rejection of mainstream-straight values - but - embraced an experimentation with drugs (often for insights and creativity) and different sexuality than marriage only intercourse. The original non-conformists. These beat writers included Allen Ginsberg, William S. Burroughs, and Jack Kerouac.
And, by 1959, the TV show The Many Loves Of Dobie Gillis featured the `beatnik' Maynard G. Krebs who had a unkempt appearance, hated to work (lazy), and `talked slang-lingo'.
As Wikipedia.Org puts it - "Maynard G. Krebs became a well known figure in American popular culture, especially among members of the mainstream culture who had never had any contact with actual "beats", and formed the basis for the beatnik character archetype" (my italics)
Also, in 1959 - further definition to these `beatnik' characters was the movie `The Beat Generation' talking about those `way-out' beatniks. (See movie poster above.) And, as the 50's became the 60's - an image of `alternative life users' was being set. An image that in the mid-60's transferred from the somewhat innocent experimenting goateed Beatniks to the `guilty users ' - the long haired Hippies. `Hippies' that `used to be straight - before the Beatniks'. The US and THEM of the late 60's and all that came to represent. The turn-on, drop-out movement - to the straight media. Suddenly, a few Beatniks smoking and dropping acid for enlightenment - became millions of pot smoking, anti-war activists -who were EVEN rejecting marriage (and waiting for sex) in favor of `living together' and even `free love'.
Now, I'm hardly going to try to summarize the 60's in this article - so - let us continue onward towards the current media characterization of pot users. I also have to fess up that I have not seen the show `Weeds' on Cable. That said, I don't believe the characterizations I lay out are misrepresentative.
Today's Pot Smokers - A Media Handbook
Pot smokers are stupid. Look at the way they talk, like Cheech and Chong - `like, what's up maaaaaaaan' `got any reefer maaaaannnn'. Pot smokers are stupid and use slang-lingo. They talk slow and even walk slow; perhaps draggin one leg like Chester from Gunsmoke. Or walking like the `Keep Truckin' days of the 70's - Dead style. Yes, you can portray smokers as nearly having disabilities and it WILL be funny (with the laughtrack).
Pot smokers can't control themselves (which viewers find hilarious) - just look at how they get the munchies. Show them with uncontrollable urges for sweets or bad food such as pizza or tacos. Always show food mashed around the mouth for effect and the person nearly choking trying to get as much food in the mouth as possible. It's sometimes fun to show the smokers using a wrong utensil such as a knife to eat french fries. NEVER show them enjoying a delicacy or fine wine.
Pot smokers sexual habits AREN'T like Americas. Imply that pot smokers MORALS are not like Americas -- you know, they fornicate and don't get married, they have 3somes, they live in communes. Nothing is too over the top is making sure they are portrayed as something NOT like normal -- gay pot smokers, sure; bi-sexual, sure; swingers, sure; kinky, of course. Just make sure NEVER to portray pot smokers as married AND monogamous.
Pot smokers wear only Tie-Dye and only listen to rock or reggae or rap music. It's very important to note that you only show YOUNG people being associated with pot smoking - something mature adults would never do. Pot ceases to be of interest to anyone over 30 - so never show that. Never break the image that pot usage is a youthful, shameful endeavor that is regretted at a later age (over 30).
Pot smokers LOOK different - long hair helps build this image - make sure to emphasize that smokers never look like the straight John Q. Public. If long hair is out, how about a goatee or mohawk? And, since smokers are LAZY, that long hair can be somewhat snarled - indicating the hippie doesn't even comb his hair (this is especially good for portraying Rastafarian's).
Finally, to emphasize once again - smokers are LAZY - never show them as having a difficult or challenging job - or - anyone asking a stoner for any advice of any kind. After all, wouldn't they just tell you to `go ask Alice'?
So, to summarize, the offbeat character of the Beatnik, transformed into the Hippie and NEVER evolved with the media since the mid-70's and the beginning of the Drug war in the 80's. Regardless of the transformation of usage and user types. Indeed, our current spoonfed media - seems largely oblivious to any changes - happy to keep the beer advertisers happy, the prescription drug advertisers - and politicians - three of the biggest advertisers on any TV station - money of which they could NOT run a their business on without.
Indeed, how will they turn Maynard G. Krebs into John Q. Public if legalization ever happens is beyond me. Then again, if Mr. Public would be willing to wear a Tie-Dye, perhaps all is not lost yet.
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Finally, an example of what this article is all about - media BS - http://www.nbclosangeles.com/news/us_world/Marijuana-Will-Lift-Us-Out-Of-Recession.html
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