“…For whatever reason, people are fascinated by pure, unalloyed evil” ~ Vincent Bugliosi
There are fewer images more disturbing than that of the diabolical mastermind behind the brutal Helter Skelter killing spree that occurred in Los Angeles during the summer of 1969. Actress, Sharon Tate, eight months pregnant, and six others were slaughtered like pigs, and the murderers, although slated for execution, live on to this day as the state of California commuted the death penalty back in 1972.
For Charles Manson who just turned seventy-five on November 11, prison has been home for more than half of his wasted life, and he continues to wield influence over some who see him as a sort of messenger. Although few would question that he is indeed evil incarnate if ever any one human being could be, Manson gets a lot of mail and spends his days singing and playing guitar in the prison’s high security unit. He has also made friends with and speaks regularly to “Gray Wolf” and “Star”, a 24-year-old fast food employee.
It is amazing that Manson can wield any influence at all, as his transparency as a murderous, cowardly and demented piece of human garbage who blames the world for everything that has gone wrong in his life would seem to be a given. And yet as absurd as it sounds, the man has a fan club any up-and-coming rock star would die for.
According to Wolf, Manson gave him his name, just as he “christened” other members of his infamous cabal of human flotsam monsters. Thoroughly under his thumb, Wolf believes that Manson possesses deep insight into environmental issues and claims that he as well as Star, moved closer to the prison in Corcoran so that they could be near their idol.
In Wolf’s opinion:
“Manson thinks the destruction of the environment is much more serious than we are being made out to believe. Our government keeps covering up problems with pollution, with coal, with automobiles. Charlie says we need to get back to the horse.”
(Hardly new or earth-shattering what Charlie says, but perhaps he is half right and we should get back to what we shovel up from behind the horse.)
Star also got her moniker from Manson, and says: “He’s really witty and really sharp and he’s got a …weird sense of humor but I like it, it fits with me.”
For Vincent Bugiosi, Manson’s eloquent prosecutor, Charles Manson’s name will forever be associated with his. His book, Helter Skelter, was a best seller and it was he who put Manson behind bars for the rest of his life. Bugliosi is not at all surprised to learn that Manson continues to influence those unfortunate enough to enter his orbit. In his words:
“This is just a microcosm of the tremendous interest and fascination that people still have with Charles Manson. … There’s a certain mystique that has developed around him. And one reason is that the very name Manson has come to be a metaphor for evil. He’s come to represent the dark and malignant side of humanity…”
Star claims her attraction to Manson is largely based on his views on pollution and the environment. In her words:
“The goal, really, the main goal is to basically save life on the planet Earth from the humans. We have a key to make this goal accomplished, and that key is Charlie Manson.”
That key and the door it opens is and should be locked up forever. Saving planet Earth and humanity is a noble goal, but how can someone who masterminded the brutal murders of Sharon Tate and her friends, (not to mention those of some of his family members) claim to be pro-life?
Ludicrous and absurd are some words that might apply.
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