Saturday, April 15, 2006

I'm not sure what to think.

I'm thinking about a blog entry I read about half an hour ago.

I haven't ready tony in weeks. Maybe months. And when I stop by for a visit tonight, what awaits me at the top of his blog isn't his usual scathing political commentary, or a tale of sexual adventures with Anna Kournikova.

It's a story of a 20-something man in Oklahoma who killed and mutilated a 10-year-old girl. His neighbour.

And I can't stop thinking about it.

And I'm thinking, as I always have, that there is a very fine line between men and monsters. I'm thinking that the inhuman walk among us every day and we don't know it because the thing that separates us from them is tiny, almost invisible, and yet it is everything.

I'm thinking, as I have for years, that sociopaths would make fantastic actors, either on stage or in front of a camera, because they act every day of their lives.

I'm thinking that it's incredibly strange to live in the 21st century, where we can take a peek through a tiny window into the existence of a criminal, a murder, because, at least at this moment, his blog is still up and running.

I'm thinking that, at least to the outside world, he seemed so...normal. But then, that's the problem, isn't it? The raving and drooling psychopaths are easy to spot, easy to avoid.

I'm wondering what that tiny line is, that tiny string, that thiny thing that separates us from them, I'm wondering what that really is. Can we see it? Can we know it's there? Is it something that some of us are born with, and some not? Or is it something that we all have at the start, but which, in some of us, breaks?

I'm wondering how someone -- anyone -- can, as the Police Chief of Purcell, Oklahoma described in a press release, "plan to kidnap a person, rape them, torture them, kill them, cut off their head, drain the body of blood, rape the corpse, eat the corpse, then dispose of the organs and bones."

I'm wondering how that same someone could write an entry -- albeit a short one -- in his blog while a little girl was dead in his closet.

I'm wondering if I have ever met anyone with this sort of potential in them. I'm wondering if I ever will.

I'm wondering how I could possibly tell.

I'm wondering if this is some sort of sad, sick, result of the fact that we, as a species, are essentially broken. And I'm wondering, if that is the case, is there any way we can be fixed?

My thoughts tonight are with the family and friends of 10-year-old Jamie Rose Bolin, and with the entire community of Purcell Oklahoma. They are -- I can only assume -- even more lost and confused by this than I am.

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