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.

THE RIGHT TO CARRY
Greg Laskowski | Bradenton, FL | June 12, 2011

I protected your right of free speech with a gun. Don't dis the right to carry.

TODAY'S STRIP
Bryan Lavender | WYOMING | June 12, 2011

Today's strip perfectly captures the feelings of this veteran. Thank you.

AN ISSUE
Caroline Frazier | San Francisco, CA | June 12, 2011

I'd like to bring Doonesbury readers' attention to an issue that affects thousands of military women who have been the victims of sexual assault. In 2008, Security Gates changed the questionnaire for national security clearances (the SF86), excluding counseling for combat trauma from the question regarding whether or not you have seen a mental health professional in the past years. However, counseling for sexual assault is not excluded from this question.

The reason this is important is that every officer has to have a "secret" clearance, which must be renewed every 10 years. An NCO who wants to advance in his or her career field needs a "secret" clearance. Further, those that get more senior or want to specialize need to apply for a top secret clearance, which again requires filling out this form.

I've spoken with military victims of sexual assault who refuse to get counseling because they are afraid of having to disclose it on their security clearance questionnaire. Again, for certain jobs, no clearance = no job. Though the DoD tries to assure us by saying we will get the clearance "eventually," they miss the point of having to disclose a deeply private, deeply personal detail on a form that is processed through a servicemember's chain of command.

Further, once that form is submitted, an Office of Personnel Management investigator comes and questions the servicemember on "red flags," ie going to get counseling for a mental health issue. This is a degrading and deeply embarassing process. Though I've written the military several times on this topic, I get empty responses that they are "working on it." How long will we let our servicewomen (and some servicemen) suffer in silence?

The only way the military seems to change these days is when they are embarassed by some high-profile incident in the media. I am writing to help generate public support for a change that would help thousands of women and men who are fighting and serving their country with distinction. You can read a Military Times article about the subject here.

IN THE SANDBOX
Ron Shirtz | Portland, OR | June 12, 2011

Aside from the issue of carrying guns in public, I hope Leo was either being sarcastic or speaking tongue in cheek about spending two years in The Sandbox to defend the freedom to pack a gun -- or the rest of our freedoms, for that matter. I understand the need to give respect for our troops, but none of our freedoms are being preserved. In actuality they are being destroyed. Leo and his girlfriend need to go through a TSA screening, to discover firsthand how little his service overseas has preserved our "freedoms."

PLACE OF HONOR
S. Carson | Stone Mountain, GA | June 12, 2011

I read a lot of comics and am generally annoyed by the whole "order a framed print of this comic!" thing that's on every cartoonist's web page. I just don't get why anyone would put a cartoon anywhere besides the fridge, or pinned to the wall of their cubicle. Or rather, I didn't get it until today. There's so much to love in the plot, characters, dialogue and artwork of today's strip  (I especially love Alex's "What?!"), that I can easily imagine it in a place of honor on someone's wall.

RERUNNING TODAY'S SUNDAY STRIP
Andrea | Rome, ITALY | June 12, 2011

Thanx for rerunning today's Sunday strip. It's probably one of my favourites about Leo, and one of those that make him the best new character of the strip, maybe in years.

VOICE
Ben Ezzell | Quilcene, WA | June 11, 2011

Leo's voice comes through loud and clear!

ONE OF THE BEST
Kathy | Albany, NY | June 11, 2011

I've been reading Doonebury since the very beginning. I have to say that Leo (aka Toggle) is one of the best characters ever. That is saying a lot, because I love Mike, B.D., Boopsie, Mark, etc. They are all like family.

TOGETHER
Ruex | La Porte, TX | June 11, 2011

Please keep Alex and Leo together. They complete each other. They remind me of my daughter and her husband.

iPAD
Michael | Edmond, OK | June 11, 2011

And Alex uses an iPad. Nice...

GIVE ALEX CREDIT
C. Yankee | Mystic, CT | June 10, 2011

You've got to give Alex a lot of credit. The first time I met Leo's mother, I would have run like hell!

CAF DINNER
Tati | New York, NY | June 09, 2011

I just attended the CAF dinner last night. Lots of sweet Leos there!

ALEX AND TOGGLE
Sean | Omaha, NE | June 09, 2011

Seriously, if GBT just wants to focus on Alex and Toggle for the rest of the summer, I wouldn't mind. Although some interaction between Kim and Toggle would be cool to see.

VOTED OUT
Patti Heyes | Rome, NY | June 09, 2011

Oh no! Doonesbury (and Dilbert) have been voted out (via readers' poll) of the Utica, New York newspaper as it undergoes change to a new format. My vote to save the strip wasn't enough! Thank goodness for Slate and my daiy dose (in color yet).

BREAKUP
Chris | Soldotna, AK | June 09, 2011

Please, dude, do not set this week up for the breakup of Alex and Toggle. This relationship has been handled so beautifully over the last couple of years. These two are awesome for each other, and it would truly be a shame to shatter it just because of one neurotic girl's insecurities.

THE FAR DISTANT FUTURE
John Keefer | Santa Monica, CA | June 09, 2011

I think in the far distant future people with curiosity could do well to study Doonesbury for an idea of what 20th-21st century life was like, today's strip being a prime example.

ULYSSES
Jack Cerf | Chatham, NJ | June 09, 2011

I loved Leo not getting the Ulysses reference. It's a reminder that Alex's neuroses aren't the only source of tension in the relationship; there's a real difference in education and social class that they're overcoming every day. It doesn't faze Leo, but I suspect Alex is very conscious of it and worried about it.

SAVE
Jane | Watson, CT | June 08, 2011

Almost sweeter than Leo on Monday was his boss's save to not suggest that Alex isn't a superhot chick.

MOZART GROUP
George | Tequesta, FL | June 08, 2011

I hope everyone takes the time to scroll down and watch Today's Video on the home page. The Mozart Group has left a smile on my face this morning. Thank you GBT for introducing us to so much talent on a daily basis.

DREW'S COUSIN
MyKidsMom | North of D.C., PA | June 08, 2011

I have a daughter that could pass for Drew's cousin. Scary smart, scary hot, sixth in her class of 270 and planning to go Ivy League. Her sweet BF of two years is visually impaired, academically disinclined, and one of the finest young men I know. Yet between the glasses, age and haircut, until very recently, he was pretty gawky looking. What they know is what Leo knows -- they have fun together, and they've got each other's back.