A Tray of Plywood All the Way Down

Before brushing into a zeitgeist of parenthood when I illustrated a not-for-bedtime-story, Go the Fuck to Sleep, I wrote and illustrated a children’s book that was, for some, even more controversial. In 2005, I published It’s Just a Plant — A Children’s Story About Marijuana, a tool for parents to…

Part Two: A Double Standard for the Single Convention Treaty

In March 2009, Bolivian president Evo Morales stood before the United Nations, a coca leaf in hand, citing a history of use of the plant for purposes social, spiritual, medicinal, and nutritional. The event marked the beginning of a formal…

Part One: How the Coca gets into Coke

In 1886, a pharmacist named Dr. John Pemberton mixed extract of the green coca leaf — containing the recently discovered marvel of cocaine — with the caffeine kick of West African kola nuts, making a “Brain Workers’ Panacea” tonic called Coca-Cola.

Rikers Island, in Portraits

On Rikers Island it is not fruitful to be angry. I’ve seen anger and frustration revealed in fits and bursts, but more often I marveled at how people accept being locked in a cage for the most precious months and years of their lives. When someone has a family and…

How to be a Monkey Wrench in the Machinery of the Drug War

So you’ve received a notice to report to jury duty.


You’re trying to get out of it?

Too busy?

“I’m going to turn into a dream and then you’ll be in real trouble”

On the morning of March 7th, 2002, Abdul Matí Klarwein passed away in his sleep, from his home in Deia, on the island of Mallorca, Spain.

photo courtesy the Klarwein family

“I painted psychedelically before I took psychedelics…”

Matí became a mentor in my head as soon as I first saw his work. He painted…

Ricardo Cortés

I draw, write, & sometimes publish books. Drug wars, oceans, jails, children's books. Rmcortes.com

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