Acid is a Teddy Bear

August 17, 1971
1971 HFP, Volume 3 Number 17

The government of Syria cut off diplomatic relations with neighboring Jordan, putting additional strain on an already tense peace in the Middle East. President Nixon suspended the conversion of US Dollars to gold. And in Northern Ireland, British authorities began imprisoning hundreds of Irish Catholics without trial or formal charges as part of Operation Demetrius; the mass arrests and imprisonments would continue through 1975, eventually interning more than 1,900 people.

Continuing our series of "theme issues", this edition dealt mostly with drugs, particularly LSD, and featured two first-person articles by former LSD users, an open letter to Dr. Timothy Leary, and two full-page cartoons drawn especially for this issue by our brother Dale Yancy. With Jesus at our side, the Hollywood Free Paper looked into the valley of orange sunshine.

Mark L. was raised in a Christian family and attended a Baptist church as a child. "When I was 11," Mark wrote, "our Sunday School teacher asked if there was anyone that wanted to accept Jesus as their Savior." Mark did, but it didn't last. "I went head-on into drugs when I was 16, and completely forgot about Jesus." Eventually, LSD use brought Mark to the point where he was "almost dead, physically and mentally. My brain was really going head-on into insanity and my body was losing weight. I wasn't in any kind of shape, and I began to think about my life." In a moment of clarity, Mark prayed the prayer the apostle Peter prayed when he tried to walk on water but realized he was sinking: "God, save me!" Immediately Mark felt Jesus lifting him up, "and that's when I committed my life to Christ. I knew that if He could do that in an instant, then He could change my whole life forever."

Kevin K. didn't grow up in a Christian family like Mark. By his mid-teens, Kevin was using six different drugs, including LSD. "People used to tell me if I didn't slow down I wasn't going to last," Kevin wrote, "but it didn't really matter." Mark felt depressed and guilty over the Christmas holidays, "because it was Christmas and I had nothing in my heart. I dropped about seven tabs of acid and completely flipped and had to be talked down. Then I knew I was searching and running away from the truth." The truth turned out to be Jesus. Now, "each day gets so much better. He's the only real thing I have in my life."

The cartoon of an LSD user shown above right was created by our brother Dale Yancy. The photo of two young Jesus People at a Church in the Park gathering was by Tom Jackson.

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