Monday, June 27, 2005

Hey, Hey, BTK, How Many Families Did You Kill Today?

I know it has been a few weeks since our last Braffy nomination. For that, I sincerely apologize. But there's been some volatile action behind the scenes here...I'm afraid I have a rather sad announcement...Cedric the Entertainer will be unable to host the Braffy awards ceremony, now tentatively set for mid-July.

It seems, like Dave Chappelle, Cedric is burned out on celebrity life, and needs to take a long South African vacation. He told me he will be hanging out with his Muslim spiritual advisor, and is considering a full-on conversion to Islam. His new name, by the way, will be Mohammad Mohammad Saddiq the Non-Entertainer, Because Entertainment Is An Affront to Allah, which is kind of a cool name, I guess, even if it probably won't easily fit on a marquee.

So I was faced with a massive replacement host problem. Who to get? Who could possibly represent what the Braffies were all about as succinctly as Cedric the Entertainer? More important, who was so queer for fame, they would accept an invitation to host an awards ceremony for a low-on-readership satirical blog whose author mainly wanted to insult him?

The answer was obvious...Sean Hannity. He'll be guest-blogging in the next few days, as a way to introduce himself to all of you, my blessed, special readers. So look out for that. And look out for this next Braffy nomination, our first genuine, verified mass murderer!

That dazzling young man is none other than Dennis Rader, the charming fellow who has admitted to an ongoing killing spree that has shocked and appalled the town of Wichita, Kansas since the 1970's. Rader has admitted to 10 different killings, which he refers to as "projects". Sorry, ladies, but he's already taken...married for 35 years with TWO GROWN CHILDREN!

Rader, 60, of Park City, entered the guilty pleas as his trial was to begin.

Referring to his victims as "projects," Rader laid out for the court how he would "troll" for victims on his off-time, then stalk them and kill them.

BTK, by the way, is a name Rader chose for himself in one of his many communications over the years taunting the police. It stands for "Bind, Torture, Kill," which was my third guess. After "Bleu Cheese, Tartar Sauce, Ketchup" and "Byron, Tennyson, Kipling."

Yeah, he was one of those cinematic serial killers who would send the police clues about his crimes and identities. In fact, it was one of these stupid clues that wound up getting him caught.

After years of silence, the killer resurfaced last year with a letter to The Wichita Eagle that included photos of the 1986 strangulation of Vicki Wegerle and a photocopy of her missing driver's license. Her case had not been linked to BTK until then.

That letter was followed by several other cryptic messages and packages. The break in the case came after a computer diskette the killer had sent was traced to Rader's church.

His church! He was taunting the police using discs stolen from his church!

Now, I've been thinking this for a long time, but I can't keep quiet any longer. It is clear to me that lots of adults who attend church are also guilty of violent crimes. Like the Washington DC sniper. Surely we can't deny any longer that church is clearly to blame. People hear these violent sermons and they want to go out and copycat that violence. These are adults with impressionable little minds. It's high time we banned church, so that people will stop being violent towards one another.

Oh, and we'll have to get rid of The Matrix, too, obviously.

All sarcasm aside, I really don't get the "taunt the police with evidence" concept. I mean, yeah, maybe you're so brilliant, you've thought out all the scenarios and there's no way to be's still an unneccessary risk. And isn't getting away with murdering an entire family enough of a "fuck you" to the cops? Do you really have to rub their noses in it after the fact as well? What did they ever do to you?

And, I mean, imagine getting caught because you stupidly sent a disc to the cops that they then traced! This guy will be in jail for the rest of his life because of that one little dumb mistake. Oh, he must want to kill himself, considering the state won't do it for him. (They don't have the death penalty in Kansas, or at least, they didn't at the time Rader was committing his misdeeds).

When questioned by the judge about the motivation for the Otero slayings, Rader said: "That was part of what you call my fantasy."

Pressed further, Rader said, "Sexual fantasy, sir."

Rader has not been accused of sexually assaulting his victims, but he admitted masturbating over some of them.

If anyone out there feels any sort of compulsion to whack it over a freshly-killed corpse, I have an alternate suggestion for you. First, go hire a prostitute. I'd suggest the cheapest prostitute possible, because what do you care if she's attractive or not? You're just going to masturbate over her pretend "corpse" to begin with. Her being ugly will probably enhance the effect.

Then, apply some make-up to look like she's been beaten or had her throat slit or whatever sick crap you're into. Then, have her lie motionless on the floor in front of you.

Okay, so then, go about your dirty, sinful business. When you're done, pay the girl and get the hell out of there. Done, done and done. And, if you really really can't help it, fine, go ahead and actually kill her. Hey, it's better than killing a whole family. Just do the right thing, and give her pimp an extra couple bucks afterwards. That's just good manners.

Yes, you're out maybe $100 (unless you didn't take my advice and went for a more expensive escort, but that's just wasteful), but there's very little chance you'll do any serious jail time. And the wife and kids probably will never find out. That's much better than having them find out you've been spending your time laying waste to whole families, then masturbating on them, then taking pictures of them and sending them to the cops from church.

Now here's, to me, the single most troubling aspect of this entire situation:

He described to the court how he chose his victims.

"If you've read much about serial killers, they go through what they call different phases. In the trolling stage, basically, you're looking for a victim at that time. You can be trolling for months or years, but once you lock in on a certain person, you become a stalker. That might be several of them but you really hone in on one person. They basically become the ... that's the victim. Or at least that's what you want it to be."

Doesn't this guy sound rational? I mean, he's describing the behavior of serial killers like he read a bunch of books about them, not like he's one of them. I always thought of these guys as utterly disconnected from reality - psychos acting purely on crazed, homicidal instinct. I thought a guy like BTK killed because of some deep, poorly understood compulsion that science has yet to figure out.

But this guy seems fully aware of what he was doing. He knew purposefully that he was following a pattern established by other serial killers. It's almost as if he refined his abilites intentionally, as a knowing part of a larger sub-culture. I mean, "they go through what they call different phases"? Do serial killers actually refer to their "work" in those terms?

Well, I guess I'm entering my stalking stage now, as I've located a proper victim and will now begin following her...

Is that how serial killers think? I always imagined something more like..."The voices in my head command me to kill this girl and feast upon her duodenum! I'm covered in ants! STOP LOOKING AT ME!!"

It's way more scary if these guys are fully self-aware. Like, they're walking around, thinking about being a serial killer, observing their own behavior with emotional distance, recording their actions like data. Chilling...

Even his confession that he kills becuase of "sexual fantasies" is kind of peculiar. If he knows that these are just aberrant sexually deviant feelings, it seems like it would be easier to control them. I mean, if you were fully rational, and it got into your head that you couldn't find any inner piece without murdering a whole bunch of people someday, what would you do? Calmly decide to become a serial killer, or seek immediate professional help?

1 comment:

Cory said...

Are you sure that's Dennis Rader? Looks a lot like James Lipton from Inside the Actor's Studio to me.

Wait a minute...he always did seem a little suspicious...