those utterly punchable people

Mon Mar-24th-2008 // Filed under: I Rant!

A little while ago, I wrote about people who are dicks. That’s a valid source of frustration, as far as it goes, but some people really take their dickery to an extreme that just makes me hope that I could visit these worthless wastes of oxygen while they sleep — just grab a gun, walk up to them and put two in their heads. I’m not proposing it as a good solution, mind you, I’m just describing the mindset a certain kind of evil puts me in. (I’m not a huge fan of the word “evil”, I should probably stress, but in some situations I’m at a loss as to what word would — or could — be more appropriate.)

For example, take these cancerous growths in the rectum of humanity, who used a mentally disabled pregnant woman as their slave and as target practice, until she died:

Banished to the basement, the 29-year-old mother with a childlike mind and another baby on the way had little more than a thin rug and a mattress to call her own on the chilly concrete floor.

Dorothy Dixon ate what she could forage from the refrigerator upstairs, where housemates used her for target practice with BBs, burned her with a glue gun and doused her with scalding liquid that peeled away her skin.

They torched what few clothes she had, so she walked around naked. They often pummeled her with an aluminum bat or metal handle.

Dixon — six months pregnant — died after weeks of abuse. Police have charged two adults, three teenagers and a 12-year-old boy with murder in the case that has repulsed many in this Mississippi River town.

So, yeah, if I thought I could get away with it? There’s a good chance I would make myself a murderer right there and then. Of course, it’s entirely possible that when putting that gun on them, I’d lose my nerve or my morals would reassert themselves, but considering that just reading this article makes me want to put my fist through my monitor, it’s also possible that I’d go through with it.

The problem is, it’s hard to think of reasons why that wouldn’t make the world a little better place. After all, what the fuck do people like this contribute to society? Is there anything to be gained by letting them live? I mean, how do you even have a conversation with someone like this? Is that like talking to guy who worked at a Nazi concentration camp, listening to the justifications and excuses? Or, even worse, is that like talking with a human hole, someone who can’t explain their actions or the reasons for them, other than it’s just how things happened to end up because of some kind of inertia that inevitably dragged them into it? I would have to be a better man than I am to not want to hurt them — no, not even hurt them, but erase them. Just rid the world of these people.

And I know they’re not exceptional. I know there are reasons why they are the way they are, some of which go far beyond their control. More often than not, people like this are made, shaped from birth by abuse and lack of education and the kind of hardening and casual cruelty that only ignorant, indifferent and cruel adults are capable of — one bruise, squashed dream and denied emotional connection at a time. There are people who are just wired wrong from birth, I suppose, but they are the rare exception; most of our evil we make ourselves, by stomping on others so that they heal all wrong, like a broken limb that isn’t set properly. I know that.

But the problem is that my reasons against just putting these people down like rabid dogs tend to be fairly abstract (“it’s not good for our society”) or stemming from my personal weaknesses (“I don’t want to get caught”), and put against the instant gratification of that kind of murder (“motherfucker had it coming, if anyone ever did”) and even the ego boost (“I have made the world a better place”), they seem like weak arguments.

And, yeah, that’s a huge part of the problem, I know. More often than not, the secret to doing terrible things that you know to be wrong is to simply rationalize it away, little by little; throw in a little bit of peer pressure, quiet acceptance from the society at large or the approval or even praise of an authority figure, and there you go, it goes from murder to public service to duty. That, in large part, is what enables wars, never mind lesser acts of violence. I recognize that. But being fully aware of that and getting that searing hot flash of completely justified rage, of absolutely pure and morally righteous vengeance are two different things.

These useless bags of shit abused, humiliated and murdered a mentally disabled pregnant woman, leaving her other child an orphan. I don’t think that the rest of the society should put them to death or have them swallow some teeth. I don’t think any government has the right to do that. I don’t. But that doesn’t mean I wouldn’t want it to happen. I’m trying to feel guilty about that, and I can’t do it. The best I can manage is the knowledge that failing to do so doesn’t make me a better person.

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