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Stop Making Excuses and Go Watch 'The Wire'

It's come to my attention that many of you still haven't seen HBO's The Wire. This includes several people I otherwise generally admire and consider well informed. So, I've prepared a list of common excuses for not having seen The Wire, along with my responses:

Excuse #1: I don't have HBO.

Response: Seasons 1-4 are available on DVD. And the show is over, so I'm not sure it's even airing anymore anyway. Rent it, dude.

Excuse #2: I'm not really that into TV shows.

Response: The Wire is so accurate and poignant that I'm not sure it even counts as TV. Besides, it doesn’t have commercials.

Excuse #3: There were 5 seasons. How will I catch up?

Response: Really easily. It's the most captivating thing ever filmed. By the end of the first season, you'll understand. By the end of the 3rd, you'll have sent me a thank you note.

Excuse #4: I'm a hardworking drug reform activist/staffer. I work 50+ hours a week and just haven't gotten around to it. Gimme a break.

Response: You suck. The Wire is the most realistic depiction of drug war policing and the politics of crime ever produced. It's far more accurate than the evening news. If this is what you're passionate about, then you must accept David Simon's glorious gift to our movement and bask in its brilliance. You'll learn 50 things you never heard in any drug policy book or blog.

Excuse #5: I hate cop shows.

Response: That's because you've never seen The Wire. This ain't Law & Order: Criminal Intent. You won't find Vincent D'Onofrio squirming around until everyone gets pissed off and waives their right to remain silent.

In conclusion, go watch The Wire. Start with season 1 and work your way through. It just gets better each season, so be patient if it doesn't blow your mind immediately. You will better understand the war on drugs, which will make you a better activist. And you'll be able to discuss the show without anyone ruining it by telling you who gets killed. I'm not promising that the drug war will end if you watch The Wire, but I guarantee that it will continue until you do.
Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
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