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.

John Ghalt | Anchorage, AK | January 09, 2015

"My guess is that it was a marijuana joint [that started the fire]." If it weren't for Zeke confessing to having had "a small accident" that guess would not be a good one. Left unattended, cigars and "marijuana joints" stop burning. Cigarettes are treated to keep burning (try it sometime). Butts are routinely tossed. Roaches are saved.

Donanon | Sausalito, CA | January 08, 2015

It's Duke Day on the Flashbacks page! Six of eight strips feature the irrepressible Doctor/Father/Ambassador/Captain/Mailbagger/Maximum Proconsul!

Mike Brant | Antelope, CA | January 08, 2015

I served in the Navy for six years. I did it for the GI Bill, which was taken from me as soon as I mustered out. Yes, we sued and eventually got a tiny piece back, but it was too little and far too late for me. I don't need or want thanks, I just want a fair deal, and America cheats veterans wholesale.

Angela Shiraishi | Stafford, VA | January 07, 2015

As the daughter of a vet, niece of a vet, cousin of a vet, and sister of a Reservist I am disgusted by the way this country treats its service members both current and retired. If you really want to thank a Vet for their service, demand that our government compensate on a sliding scale according to service length and rank every single veteran for the rest of their lives, from the lowliest PFC to the highest ranked General. Provide housing and medical care for them and their immediate family for free -- the vet and spouse for life, the children until adulthood or college graduation. Provide any and all education vets want for the rest of their lives for free. And don't ever ask them to pay taxes again. Anyone who volunteers to take a bullet for our country deserves nothing less, and perhaps if we made that kind of commitment to take care of our service members we would not be so eager to send them off to senseless wars.

Old Bear | Baltimore, MD | January 06, 2015

What does anyone, including J.J., see in Zeke?

Shelley | Meota, CANADA | January 06, 2015

I've been reading a lot of comments from vets who are angry at being thanked for their service. I am a vet of the Canadian armed forces and am a child and grandchild of vets. All i ever wanted to do was serve my country. I never did it for thanks or someone else's gratitude. I did it because i believe in service to the country that nurtures and protects you, even if it does drop the ball on that one sometimes.

In Canada we are a nation of volunteers and we try our best to keep the peace. When someone thanks me for my service i just smile and thank them for their gratitude. Sometimes it's the only way people feel they can help. It isn't always enough, but it may be all they have. So from one vet to all those out there, thank you for my freedoms, and to those who gave all and are the true heroes, please know that i honour you every day and thank you for the sacrifice.

Steve Bailey | Jacksonville Beach, FL | January 06, 2015

"That does it, Zeke! I've had it with you!" If only...

John T. Jones, Ph.D. | Buhl, ID | January 05, 2015

I served in 1951-52 in the Korean War, a so-called "police action." The American people had just closed WWII and they had no room for another war where their younger children could be killed or maimed. The Korean War is called "The Forgotten War," but it wasn't forgotten by America, it was ignored. We fought with junk from WWII, our radios didn't work -- the good ones were in Europe -- our trucks were crap (we captured two good Lend Lease Russian trucks which the army took from us), the clothing we needed for winter was slow in coming, ammunition was limited.

When I got home, most people didn't even know I had been in Korea, and couldn't have cared less. Unlike the Vietnam vets who were spat upon, we were just ignored. Nowadays, big corporations are always harping on how they love vets. Bull on "Thank you for your service." Everybody is saying it, some sincerely, but it is not needed. I prefer being ignored. There is only one reason why vets are honored now. it is because of the Veteran's organizations who held Veterans Day programs in high school auditoriums and parks.

For some time large restaurant chains have been feeding vets on Veterans Day. I missed once at the Golden Coral in Twin Falls and the manager noted that and gave me his card saying I was to be fed the next time I came in. This year I ate at Denny's, where you have to pay for the drink. The vet next to me, a regular army vet, paid for my drink. I could have eaten ten meals in Twin Falls that day, as everybody is feeding the vets nowadays. That is better than, "Thank you for your service!" Maybe someday we will be able to get a significant discount on a Toyota. But I don't expect the big corporations will start giving handouts to vets unless they see there is big money in that.

I don't know of any war since WWII that was actually protecting the American public. We were not fighting for America in Korea. I have gone back to Korea a couple of times, and the Korean people have always honored me. Why? Because that was who I was fighting for. Most of our military in Korea knew nothing about Korean heritage and history. Most were drafted, like in the Vietnam War, and just wanted to get home. It is true that we fought for each other. So now, we are all heroes because the propaganda says so. We are Big Business. Corporations have taken over sports, even college sports, and they have taken over us. Now, how are we doing with wounded returning vets crippled for life, some flat on their backs for years on end? The American people are asked to help these vets. I refuse. The government got these people maimed for life while playing their stupid war games. If I have to pay for it, that is where I want my tax money to go. Yes, I'm an angry old man in Idaho.

David Huntington | Katy, TX | January 05, 2015

I too, am a Viet Nam era vet. I spent my time in the Air Force (which I joined to avoid the draft) in Texas and Germany. I am uncomfortable with people that thank me for my service. I signed on, to do a job, for pay, I did the job, got paid, and do not feel that I did anything that merits a "Thank you."

Mike Meloy | Long Beach, WA | January 05, 2015

Re NAILED IT: "I'm not a hero." What is a hero? Someone who does the right thing at deep personal risk. As a Nam Vet, you did your duty. (Your Purple Heart shows that you paid a higher price than most.) There were those who, through cowardice or circumstance, evaded theirs. As a Viet Nam Era Vet, I have to concede that by that same definition, some of those (likely quite few) who fled to Canada were also heroes, heroes who have had to live with the same bittersweet combination of pride and doubt that what they did actually was "the right thing." So, politics, morality, and the opinions of the ignorant aside, when your country called on you, you put it all out there and fulfilled your obligations. So what if you survived? You are still a hero!

Rev. Dr. Bob Faser | Hobart, AUSTRALIA | January 04, 2015

I'm not a veteran, but I'm the son, grandson, and brother-in-law of veterans. Today's strip speaks to me about the dilemma faced by people in many western nations following the military fiascos of the decades since the 1960s. On the one hand, we don't want to endorse the stupid political decisions that led to these wars. On the other hand, we don't want to repeat the destructive public demonization of those who served in the military, such as happened with Vietnam veterans (both in the U.S. and here in Oz). As a result, there will be awkward moments -- as depicted so well by GBT today.

Matt Vongehr | Clovis, CA | January 04, 2015

A true satirist is not partisan. Imagine how many more readers would appreciate Doonesbury if it highlighted both sides of an issue. Today's strip insulted our soldiers, including men and women who are receiving pink slips in the war zone. "Uncomfortable, anxious, depressed" does not begin to describe how our friends and family members feel, when the President haphazardly withdraws troops and releases monsters from Gitmo to return to the battlefield and terrorize the world. Mr. Trudeau needs to work much harder to show the irony and danger of our elected officials' twisted motives and deadly decisions.

Art Seaton | Spokane, WA | January 04, 2015

I too, have felt uncomfortable every time I am thanked for my service. My wife has prodded me to accept it as a sign of an appreciative nation. But can I? I am a Vietnam era vet of the Coast Guard. The only foreign port I saw in eight and a half years of "service" is Vancouver B.C. I went into the Coast Guard because as a former user of marijuana, I was not moral enough to join the Army, Navy, Air Force or Marine Corps. My service was, in part, participating in the rescue of Congressmen who did not believe that small-craft warnings applied to them. I am thanked for that? When I explain the above, the response is to assure me that I still served and to thank me anyway. I wonder if the current trend to thank us "for our service" isn't just a nation with a guilty conscience trying to apologize without admitting guilt...or responsibility.

Roger Miller | Nathrop, CO | January 04, 2015

B.D.'s comments about being a vet mirror my thoughts exactly. As a Viet Nam vet I don't understand why 45 years later people want to thank me for my service. I don't think we did anything good for the country, most of us just got caught up in the wash and did what we were forced to do. But, as I always say, I don't think we let one Viet Cong get past Hawaii.

Thomas Shoesmith | New York, NY | January 04, 2015

Gratitude for the Iraq war? Not likely, but as Lt.Gen. Harold Moore wrote of Vietnam, let's not confuse the war with the men and women who were ordered to fight it.

Jim McDade | Pensacola, FL | January 04, 2015

You nailed it with today's piece. I'm a Viet Nam vet with a Purple Heart and PTSD, and I always feel uncomfortable when someone thanks me for my service. This piece gives me a proper way to react from now on. I'm not a hero and I don't want or need to be thanked. All I did was what my country insisted I do as a citizen. That's not heroism!

Craig Baumberger | Greenville, IL | January 04, 2015

What Vets desire is not adulation but instead a reconnection with the world they left when they joined the military. Thanks for your extraordinary insight.

Tiger69 | Silverton, CO | December 30, 2014

I was at Princeton one year ahead of GBT at Yale. I feel like I have met or known, at one time or another, nearly every character in the strip. Many are friends. I have forgiven GBT for having chosen Y over P.  His work has given me so much insight over the years that I consider him as easily the best cultural historian of our generation. But, even better than that, he makes me laugh. Live on, GBT, and continue to make us look at ourselves in perspective.

Antonio Velarde | Mexico City, MEXICO | December 29, 2014

A Cinzano ashtray ! I thought I would never see one again....

Mike Utzinger | Milwaukee, WI | December 29, 2014

I love reviewing world events that occurred early in my life in Classic Doonesbury. I was in graduate school when the Iran revolution occurred. I now have Iranian doctoral students. The details of the cartoons are excellent! We had cinder blocks supporting our shelves, but our TV was put away in a closet. Thanks for the memories.