Monday, May 8, 2017

Helter Skelter

Helter Skelter: The True Story of the Manson Murders by Vincent Bugliosi with Curt Gentry
Weight: 1 lb
Method of Disposal: Leaving in a Lending Library

Just reading this book and writing about it gives me the creeps.  I want to always be 500,000 miles away from anything The Family.  There is also a fine line between understanding what happened and glamorizing it--which has been done by countless magazines, books, tv shows.  I felt much more secure with Vincent Bugliosi.  I felt like I was getting accurate information, and I felt like I could trust him.  I will say that I bought this book many years ago, and I would not likely have bought it at the age I am now, knowing what I know now.  I just struggle with true crime.  I also resent the idea that Charles Manson craves and enjoys attention and that people give it to him.  Still!  He took away the lives of so many people (the exact number cannot be proven) and he just keeps on living, controlling, and making puppets out of people.  It is disgusting.  Reading this book made me struggle with my more recent (last 10 or so years) anti-death penalty stance.  I wanted him and Susan to be put down.  I recognized it was partly from fear.  Reading about them sent chills down into my stomach.  And fear should not rule your moral decisions, but it was hard.  I hate to admit that I do have regret that they were not euthanized before California changed their laws.  I think Vincent had every right and reason to write about Charles Manson and Helter Skelter because he lived it, breathed it, fought it for so long.  I am not so convinced that it is appropriate for many other people to do it, particularly after he has done it so well.

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