Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Manson: Monster or Myth?

I may catch a lot of flak for this, but what's life without a little controversy?  Was Charles Manson really such a mastermind cult leader?  Or was it just easier to give into the 'hype' at the time and slap that label on him? 

I've just finished reading "Manson: In His Own Words" (co-written by Nuel
Emmons) and found myself fascinated.  It was hard to put down, because I felt as though he was talking to me.  It transported me back to the 60's.  I could see how he became captivating.  All he wanted was to live with his growing group of misfits in peace and love.

If his side is to be believed, the reason for the killings was due to some of the 'other' members getting overly involved with drugs and spinning out of control.  True, he didn't stop them once he knew what was going, but I'm not so sure he was the diabolical mastermind he was portrayed as.

He allowed people to do whatever they wanted, whenever they wanted.  He didn't preach, and certainly not about killing or murder.  He took in anyone who seemed lost in the world and needed a place to belong.  One could argue that's exactly what made them vulnerable to suggestion, but at what point does one take responsibility for their own choices?

If you're like me, and obsessed with true crime and/or 'all things Manson,' I'd highly recommend this book.  Upon completing it, I felt compelled to contact Mr. Manson.  I called Corcoran prison, where he's housed, with every intention of writing to him.  After all, I'm a writer, and it could possibly spawn a book.

After several phone calls, and being bounced around their system, I finally obtained his address.

That's when my husband drew the line and put his foot down, not appreciating the thought of Manson having our address.  Even if I used my work address, he wasn't comfortable with it.  I understand his concern.  Even though Manson is about 80 years old now, his mystique still gives one pause.

I have to admit, the curiosity and intrigue feel overpowering right now, but I've always been impulsive and rarely listen to anyone, even my very wise husband.  In this instance, I will...for NOW...but I'm keeping that contact info on file:)


  1. Of course he says he was a bystander, but he was evil...and still is. He is a charismatic sociopath.

  2. Hi Caroline - you're right - I allowed that charm to get to me. I know psychopaths can be very charismatic when they want to be.