I Remember Dharma.

Dear Strangers
I read with horrified fascination your article on Dharma Rosada: Thank God I got out of your town alive. A lot didn’t. And yeah, your tripe is even worse than that thirties reefer madness crap, idiots. You really are serious. . . Bush; the education president. Romney, the sidekick. You the dupe paying their way. . .

On the Recent Passing of Dharma Rosada

Somehow we Amerikkkans end up getting it all wrong very persistently, don’t we? We absolutely must avoid certain things about our lack of a culture and even ourselves in order to maintain our position in the overt culture, our “friendly networks”. We must earn enough money in order to survive somewhat. We must work in order to get enough money to survive somewhat. We must complete training in order to qualify to work for chump change. We must pass a genetic test and get a drug test in order to get most jobs now (you didn’t know that the drug test was mainly done in order to get at your DNA, huh). Above all, you must not rock the boat, especially if the boat is thought of as someone else’s. That changes arbitrarily from day to day depending on which yuppie you piss off that day. But what happens if you can’t work for ten years plus as many DV, battering, and sexual abuse survivors can’t?
When any of these strictures are violated, however stupid and abusive, you are excluded from one or another part of that which is required for your full survival as an individual. You get laid off or fired first, your friends start to talk and avoid you and pretty soon, the bottom drops out of your life. We all have learned how to blame that seeming “failure” on various causes which most times are over-simplistic and many times just plain wrong. But since the crowd reinforces the belief, it becomes self-perpetuating but still pretty much useless as an effectively humane solution. Still a person who is unemployable due to a mental disability will be alienated and excluded, ostracized even, not just because of not having enough money, you and yours in the crowd will ridicule and abuse her, and some will bully and exploit her, and others still will demean her; its the amerikkkan way of death every danged, deadass boring, grey day.
It is crystal clear from my evaluation of her situation that cannabis was not the major causal factor driving Dharma Rosada to her lonely death. “Snapping” as a psychological phenomenon does not occur as a consequence of cannabis usage. The blunting of the awareness of cognitive dissonance enabled me to survive situations that were unsurvivable for many others of my generation. The weed enabled me to specify my personality and identity, endure the conflicts, the double-binding negations, and also the occasional random emotionally driven abuse that is so commonplace in our lack of a culture. If anything, cannabis enabled Dharma to survive as long as she did; a lot more die sooner and easier; killer drugs are everywhere these days.
Cannabis not only helped me survive what was otherwise unsurvivable, it also catalyzed a self-therapeutic process that no mainstream psychologist could come close to equaling. This is true for many, many people on the fringes of our “society”. In the time that I did a supportive brief counseling outreach to homeless people and others, I had to discipline nine social workers for abusing and/or neglecting homeless people and now I am working on another one; another amerikkkan who thought they were fit to judge while not understanding at all the situation their clientele were in the middle of and not really caring either. Here’ one more early negating personal double-binding psychological situation; the braindead social worker wannabe peddling the myth that your self-worth is based upon your employment status. On the one hand, work is peddled as “freedom” and the only way out; on the other hand, there has never been enough living family-wage jobs out there to provide adequate employment for everyone that wants it in the country.
Obviously Ms. Rosada was very lonely and very depressed, but in ways most Amerikkkans don’t understand. To have an awareness that is large and more expansive than most to start with, then to be placed in a small square box all alone with no one around you actively engaged with a similar worldview and consciousness is really, really bad for you. The walls start closing in and you may start creating realities in order to cope, especially if you are not eating right or at all. How’s your diet doing these days? Not so great, huh. Over time, with all the environmental stressors, your brain chemistry starts going haywire so the downward spiral starts intensifying. You try to live in that box of socioeconomic limitations and repressive strictures for long enough and yeah, just like a person in prison, you can go really, really nuts after awhile. Budget cuts kill in so many ways; daily, a person is a little worse off than before, and who really understands enough to care at all when you can hardly keep up with your own bills and responsibilities anymore in the limitations of your own situation?
I used to walk streets running errands or just running around clearing my own head, and I would stop and talk to people who seemed at risk of falling into the void opening slowly under their feet. We would talk sometimes for 15 minutes, sometimes for a couple of hours out there on those lonely streets until I was pretty sure they weren’t going to hurt themselves or anyone else; until I was pretty sure that they would make it to the next morning without killing themselves or someone else. In the case of three 15 year old girls, with broken hearts, I would ask them to walk with me off that bridge I used to walk across in Portland when I didn’t have enough bus fare (good thing too). A few times, I bought people what they needed to get through to the morning too if they were really desperate and I had it. What is a person supposed to do if effectively there is no adequate medically competent inpatient rehab out there? Find a way out yourself. People kick cold turkey all the time. That’s what killed Amy Winehouse and Whitney Houston; the kick.
So there she is, a new being at a higher level of awareness trapped in a box of stricture tightening around her as her awareness grows. Her soul craves the land, the trees, her people, her culture, her language, and her unsupported and thwarted identity. She is very fragile in her new skin and as always, there is no one there to validate, to give her encouragement and perspective appropriate to who she is. A native american said “everyone hates a half-breed”, but the lifeless walls don’t even give her that. They are silent while the insistent forces grow in intensity. Snap!!, and the forces take over driving her to her destruction. She was far beyond driven crazy a long time before that horrible day, see. . . . and we didn’t help. See why National Nurses United says “budget cuts kill” yet? Anyone remember Kitty Genovese? Can you say pass the buck?
Can you see now what an essential and basic travesty it is to blame Dharma’s situation on cannabis? It is just plain wrong, but a very easy mistake to make for us. “Oh, they’re on drugs” we say when a person acts strange, outside the box. About the man run over in the street; “Oh, he was homeless”, and somehow that is supposed to be the end of it for us, that’s OK. And that really is the end of it for them too, because once again the specific lonely horrors are way too much for us to take, and we escape back to relative comfort, from that which is really unsurvivable for us all. But like the tortures at Abu Giraib and Marion, Illinois HSU, there is no escape for them. They will do the time, and someone will continue to abuse and torture them regularly, feeling completely justified in doing so, even though their reasons are born in hell. The only thing they can count on is that you will avoid and forget about them as soon as possible. For they are not like you, so you avoid and talk and leave them behind in your own mad races through another day in the emerging nightmare.
Somehow though, afflicted as you are, you are sure that cannabis is responsible. Even though studies show you to be wrong time and again. Is it the advertisers threatening you? Could it be the shunning have-have not social context Boeing, Microsoft, and the military so carefully engineered for those crap nonprofits to grow up in and abuse the homeless with? How about the budget cuts and all those new illegal laws and abusive policies the past leadership of your fair shitty came up with the last now 40 years for the best parts of even you to slowly change, conform to, and slowly die in. No, you have been subconsciously programmed by your daily diet of really bad corporate media to think that it is only the voiceless, defenseless scapegoat of that particular day or hour, demonized by the blond-haired, blue-eyed commentator puking up the lies prescribed to misrepresent their situation in a way satisfactory to the mass murdering greaseballs at central corporate. There’s so many of them now; they pretty much have a scapegoat that covers everyone now, except for the psychopathic superrich running the situation into the ground; the real problem.
And that is why sometimes I would take the chance to make contact with anothers’ world, engaging them, educating them, sometimes tricking them even into becoming aware of ways that may give them a way out of their specific darknesses. Sometimes I would teach, sometimes I would learn about how deep and overwhelming that darkness could be, and together we would try to find a way out, an escape from those horrors so that the next day was easier and less overwhelming than the last. And now that is why I fight for more housing, more funding for great food for poor people, more medical access, more counseling and services, and more cannabis for my community. Because the case studies that I know of don’t express the sentiments reflected in your articles. Because most psychologists don’t respect the experiences and lives of their clientele enough to actually let them speak for themselves and honor that. Because my government can’t be trusted to do an unbiased study. The NIH studies on cannabis were structured to create negative outcomes; the only ones allowed to be funded of course. Because cannabis didn’t kill Dharma Rosada; this country and it’s people did in the choices they were led to make for the last 40 years, undermining the survival services safety net of the great society before Raygun slowly more and more, day after day after day. It failed the standards of their barbarity and so they killed it just like they did so many other people and things that worked in the 60’s and 70’s you don’t know about. Have you thought about Leonard Peltier rotting in jail for these last thirty five years for doing the right thing for his people; another huge set-up of an innocent and beautiful person in the way of corporate planetary mass suicide by greed; the demon god Progress? Thinking hurts so you quit, preferring alcohol and pills and whatever works. . .
And this is why it is that so many others besides her have chosen what seemed to be the only way out at the time; because maybe that was all the republicans left for her to die in. It’s the unholy worship of the all-mighty dollar again; people making a killing in all the wrong ways again. That’s why you don’t even hear about the ravages of alcohol and pharmaceuticals, or the horrors of AIDS and Hep C ravaging person after person after person. That’s why you don’t hear the drug test has an iron clad 30% error rate, even process GC/MS, or that cannabis has negligible effects on driving ability (had to get those studies done in other countries). That’s why you never hear about it’s full beneficial medical efficacy in the US; the doctor who knew was forced to go to Canada to get the work done, the word out, and he is still doing it thank God.
Because cannabis is much safer, healthier, and funner to use than the killer addictives (alcohol, tobacco, prescription drugs, powder drugs, needle drugs). And finally the real problem doesn’t want you to get out of the rut they made for you to die in and figure out the scam independently. That can really get you killed these days, especially if there’s a lot of money involved. Get it, suckahs? Drug war? It’s a killing joke on all of us and that is why I am just saying no to the nazicorporocratic I-502. Cuz cannabis is much better for you than alcohol and pharmaceuticals, and them lying, thieving Bush-Mitt nazis don’t belong in my piss and my life. Fweedom, justice, equality, generosity, privacy; what concepts. . . . all but forgotten, just like me, Dharma, and millions of others, because we didn’t sell out for an easy, dirty, bloody nazi buck like you, bent over with buttocks spread like bitchs for the new nazis. Fawk you Theattle, your yuppy asses still stink, ya spineless pansies. Lose on, losers, bend some over more cuz that’s how Mitt likes it, bitch, don’t I know. What was the name of that woman Bush repeatedly raped during high school? Margie Schoedinger. She recently committed suicide at 33; no one cared. The repeated vicious rapes and the lack of a community response killed her, not the cannabis idiots. And remember, Dharna jumped from the ledge when the cops broke down the front door of her apartment. Sorry Dharma. I wish I had had the courage to talk with you and get to know you because we were both in the same sinking boat alone, together. .
Lyle Courtsal http://www.3mpub.com


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Lyle Courtsal is a disabled author/activist who has worked variously as a school bus driver, tree planter, truck driver, and shipyard laborer. He has also attended three colleges, but prefers studying on his own. During the past several years, he has developed a street outreach method for getting intensively self-poisoned, dually-diagnosed addict/alcoholics off the streets and into truly helpful hands while maintaining constitutional standards of non-discrimination and privacy. His technique has an 80 percent success rate. Lyle likes really big, old, live trees; Frisbees; sailing; mid-70s long nose Kenworths going really fast; hardcore rock; true decency; generosity of spirit; and freedom. He presently more-or-less exists in Seattle, Washington. He goes to church at least once a month whether he needs it or not. Check out the book-Enjoy!!

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