Punishment or Mercy?
Mercy, Mercy, Mercy!
by Ben Jacques
SojoMail 8-02-2023

The packed crowd in Chicago's Southside Club got it that night in 1966,
as the Cannonball Adderley quintet performed the crossover classic,
"Mercy, Mercy, Mercy." The audience, tuned not only to jazz, but to a
hard life in a mean time in America, intuitively understood as cornet,
sax, bass, and drums swelled with Joe Zawinul's keyboard in soulful
affirmation: mercy, mercy, mercy!

Today, I'm not sure we know the meaning of the word.

I was wondering about it one night as we sat in a pizza parlor in
Amherst, Massachusetts. With a group of teacher friends, we had just
watched the University of Massachusetts Minutemen take an unexpected
victory off the basketball court. But it was also the night, Dec. 12,
2005, that many across the nation waited to see if Gov. Arnold
Schwarzenegger would grant clemency to Stan "Tookie" Williams of Crips
gang fame. Convicted of four murders in two armed robberies, Williams
had spent over two decades on death row in San Quentin.

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c4cadmin op Thursday 03 August 2023 - 15:25:47
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 Support Reform
Support NORML

c4cadmin op Thursday 27 July 2023 - 23:15:47
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 Downsize D.C. - Depose the Drug Czar
Quick. You need help. Desperately. Get out the yellow pages, or do a web
search. Look under "people to tell you what to think."

Don't find it? Maybe it's in the government pages?

Oops. Sorry for the bother. You've already hired someone to tell you what to
think. He's called the Drug Czar. His job, paid for with your tax dollars, is
to tell you what to think about national drug policy.

That's it. That's all. That's what the Drug Czar does. He tells you what to

Aren't you relieved?

As you go about your labors today put a smile on your face. You're working,
in part, to pay for that guy you hired to tell you what to think about our
nation's narcotics laws. Isn't it comforting? Just think how confused you'd
be without that Drug Czar guy to do the heavy mental lifting for you.

What's that you say? You didn't know you hired someone to do that? You don't
need it? You don't like the name "Czar?" You won't have a smile on your face
as you labor to pay his salary?

Well, perhaps you just need more information. Don't you know that this guy
lobbies state legislatures to keep them from passing drug laws the federal
government doesn't like? And don't you know that this guy works hard to
defeat medical marijuana initiatives, and keep voters from voting the wrong
way? Isn't that worth something to you?


Well, then perhaps you'll want to know that there are some in Congress who
want to fire the guy and close his office. In fact, his job is up for renewal
right now, and there's legislation that would send the Czar packing. You
might want to let your representatives know that you don't need no stinking
Drug Czar. If you feel so moved, you can send your message here,

Thank you for being a DC Downsizer.

Perry Willis
Communications Director
DownsizeDC.org, Inc.
c4cadmin op Friday 21 July 2023 - 12:55:35
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Seeing Jesus in a Tornado c4cadmin @ (13 Jul : 11:45) (religion)

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