Blowback_toon

Blowback

A clean, well-lit place to vent

Please feel free to contribute to this frequently-updated forum, which posts selected commentary on our favorite comic strip. If you’d like your critique to be posted, please note that civility, if not approbation, counts. Click here to submit a comment.

OLD CHARACTERS
D.J. | COLORADO | July 31, 2012

So which of the old characters will still be reading the strip? Not this one. I hope the goose tastes good.

SOUNDS SIMPLE
Sparky | AMERICA | July 31, 2012

Although picture ID sounds simple, I recently moved to a new state and had to make three trips and pore through boxes and boxes of old files to get all the documentation I needed. The reason? The state would not accept my valid ID from another state as proof of anything. I had to go back to my original birth certificate and also produce proof of divorces and marriages to validate my current name. All this even though I had previously resided more than 20 years in the state into which I was moving.

This was a time-consuming and expensive chore for me -- to get new drivers licenses and tags for myself and my husband cost us more than $400, and this was with a discount for having previously had tags in this state. It was also somewhat anxiety provoking. And we are peaceful seniors who are very law abiding. Our skin color is white. We have college educations. We keep boxes of records which we lug around with us when we move.

If we are serious about preserving a democracy, and we want picture IDs for everyone, why doesn't the government pay all the costs, including the costs of researching birth certificates and other documentation for those who find it a burden to do it for themselves? The framers of the constitution did not necessarily want everyone to vote. The government they envisioned was pretty much run by free, white, male landowners. What do we want?

ALL IN ONE
Jane G. | Philadelphia, PA | July 31, 2012

Are you seriously considering retiring from writing/drawing what I have for years now been seriously insisting to my friends is the great American novel of our lifetime? I hope not. Doonesbury is our Dickens, Trollope, and George Eliot -- all in one. Keep it going. Please!

SAY IT AIN'T SO!
Samuel M. Ofsevit | New York, NY | July 31, 2012

You can't possibly be getting rid of Mike, B.D., Mark and Zonker after 42 years. Say it ain't so! I have been a fan since Newsday published Doonesbury in the early 70s. Too much change is not good, although Leo is certainly one of the best, most sympathetic characters you have created.

TOO YOUNG
Janet Cassidy | Patterson, NY | July 31, 2012

No!!!! Hey, Alex, sorry girl, but it is not all about you. You're just too young to be all that interesting. GBT, please just keep on doing what you've been doing all these years.

FAVE
Babette d'Yveine | Fairfield, CT | July 31, 2012

I understand the desire to make the strip current, but please, don't get rid of Zonker. He's my fave of all the Doonesbury characters.

DOESN'T HOLD UP
Bob | New Hope, PA | July 31, 2012

I am of an age where I understand transition, but have to say the thought of new "adventures" doesn't hold up to the decades of illumination the strip has served up. Doonesbury is popular without being populist, insightful and at times incising -- all done without malice or violence. We can't afford to lose this voice in the American conscience, and I hope it remains the core of the strip. Thanks.

A SILLY JOKE
Ian | Frankfurt, GERMANY | July 31, 2012

I hope this stuff about Alex becoming the lead is just a silly joke. If I want a strip about a neurotic, self-centered chick with a long suffering, down to earth boyfriend then I'll read Cathy. Whilst welcoming the newcomers -- Toggle, Melissa, Zipper etc -- there's no way I want to sacrifice B.D., Zonker, Uncle Duke and the rest for a bunch of kids with problems that I, as a long time reader and middle-aged man, don't really associate with.

TAKING OVER
Charles Chosewood | Darien, GA | July 31, 2012

So the "youthful flashbacks" are taking over, huh? I guess senility finally caught up with you. It's a shame that age so softens factual history, or you would realize these "new" folks have nothing to offer in 2012 and had very little in the 1980s for that matter. Good luck. You're going to need it!

CANDORVILLE
S.J.G. | Portland, OR | July 30, 2012

The little-known but excellent comic Candorville covered the 'voter fraud' issue several months ago in a short series which starts here. I had the same doubts as some of the more angry Blowback commenters here, so I posted my questions on his site and the cartoonist answered them personally. Apparently there are many people who cannot afford a state-issued ID, for any number of legitimate (though sad) reasons.

TRUDEAU'S TAKE
Richard Hunter | London, ENGLAND | July 30, 2012

This week's story arc with Mike foolishly allowing Alex to take over the strip appears to be Trudeau's take on King Lear. Hopefully Doonesbury the elder will triumph, however, as I'd hate to lose all the old hippie characters!

CHANGES
Rob | Olympia, WA | July 29, 2012

Changes are hard in the best of times, but changes in your comics? Well, I guess I survived B.D. taking off his helmet so the changes can be endured! We will just have to see if the next generation can hold my attention like Mike and his compatriots have been able to do.

GROOMING AN HEIR
David Cooke | Issaquah, WA | July 29, 2012

If Mike is indeed passing the Doonesbury torch to a new generation, I wonder if GBT will also be grooming an heir to pick up the strip when he retires. If so, I'm applying for the job. I'm nowhere near as wise as him, but I can definitely draw a better crow. And Alex can rest assured that if she hires me her nose job is in the bag.

CHANGE
Pilgrim | St. Cathrines, CANADA | July 29, 2012

I sure hope today's 'toon doesn't mean what I fear it means. I hate to think of too much change to the beloved Doonesbury. I like the cast of characters you've had, although I'm not overly partial to the one being mentioned as the new face and approach. God, I hope you don't mean it. But I guess nothing good lasts forever.

NOT YET
Curtis Burga | Mustang, OK | July 29, 2012

Whew! Was concerned for just a second there with today's strip. Almost like the fakeout they did on the last Indiana Jones movie, when Shia LeBouf has The Hat in his hands, only to have it grabbed back by Harrison Ford. I imagine that someday, if the strip is allowed to go on like "the walking dead" (ie Blondie, Dick Tracy, Gasoline Alley), that many of the original characters will be gone, and the cast will consist of middle aged versions of Alex, Toggle, Jeff, and B.D.'s daughter Sam. But not yet! Not yet...

THE NECESSARY DOCUMENTS
Susan | New Orleans, LA | July 28, 2012

We have been trying to get the necessary documents to obtain a state ID for our 19-yr-old son. The ID place wants an original birth certificate, a social security card, and a picture ID. He is homeschooled, so we created the picture ID, but all the other documents were lost in Katrina (remember her?). The social security office required a state ID and an original birth certificate to issue a replacement card. Don't even get me started on the birth certificate red tape. We ended up with the nicest person in the world as our case worker at Social Security, and I still don't know how he did it, but all the red tape went away. My son is now registered to vote, and he's registered with the Selective  Service. By the way, the Selective Service required no documentation at all! So hey, the whole process only took us -- almost 7 years!

CROW NOUVEAU
Brian Threlkeld | Urbana, IL | July 28, 2012

Love the Jim Crow Nouveau storyline! Wish he'd disappear, but as long as he has such avid fans among Republican legislators, I hope he'll be a regular visitor to the strip.

VOTER ID LAWS
Tony Laz | Newark, NJ | July 28, 2012

Here's why Voter ID Laws are Jim Crow: Prior to 2008, there was only one state (Arizona, natch) that required the showing of ID to vote. Somehow, our nation survived. Since 2008, there are now (depending on your standards) between 23-30 states that have either enacted or are trying to enact Voter ID laws. Study after study shows that these laws have a disproportionate effect on certain, specific groups. The elderly. College students. African-Americans. Latinos. Guess which political party those groups tend to vote for? And if you think that the election of our first ever African-American president in 2008 is just a crazy coincidence regarding these laws, you're a master of self-deception. To those who think showing ID should be mandatory, why was practically no one talking about this before Obama's election? Why is this suddenly an imperative? It certainly can't be "voter fraud", which GBT correctly points out is essentially non-existent. That's why Voter ID Laws are Jimmy Crow. They are a fabricated solution in search of a problem. And they, unquestionably, target the voter base of one political party. Wake up. Maybe the next set of laws will affect your ability to vote.

SERIOUS
Wayne | San Francisco, CA | July 27, 2012

If they were serious about voter fraud, they'd draft an army of 1,000,000, form a conga line from Canada to Mexico and sweep across the country, coast to coast, shoulder to shoulder, and fingerprint and issue a tamperproof ID to every person they came across.

HORRENDOUS
Marie Thompson | Kingston, NY | July 27, 2012

Thank you for bringing to the attention of our country the horrendous and what should be treasonous voter suppression occurring in too many states (even one state is too many). I am appalled to see such blatant bigotry committed by government officials and news media.