PDA

View Full Version : Who gets more of your sympathy -- Jeff Dahmer or Martha Stewart?


Boyo Jim
10-12-2004, 07:21 PM
Inspired by the Pitting of the media's glee over Martha's imprisonment (http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?p=5360224#post5360224)

I have to say I sympathize more for Dahmer than for Martha. He seemed a pitiful sick creature. She's just a rich heartless bitch.

Starving Artist
10-12-2004, 07:36 PM
A pitiful, sick creature...I think that sums him up well. I always felt sorry for Jeffrey Dahmer, myself. And like I said in the other thread, people look at me like I'm crazy every time I do, usually followed by their description of how awful they thought he was.

But much moreso than any other serial killer I can think of, he truly seemed to feel guilt and remorse over the crimes that his compulsions led him to commit. He cooperated fully with the authorities once he was found out, and he seemed more than ready to accept whatever punishment was deemed appropriate for his actions. I think he was very troubled by whatever it was that caused him to commit the crimes he did, and even asked that his brain be examined after his death to see if the cause could be determined. And while he met a pretty horrible death himself I think he probably welcomed it.

Shakes
10-12-2004, 07:41 PM
It's a tie they both get exactly ZERO..

(To the op: What's rich got to do with anything?)

Starving Artist
10-12-2004, 07:44 PM
Oops, I forgot about the question asked in the OP. Yes, I definitely feel more sympathy for Dahmer than Martha Stewart. This isn't to mean I think her crime was the greater, only that he seemed sorry and remorseful and in the grip of a compulsion he couldn't control, whereas Martha knew full well what she was doing, and she has yet to own up to having done anything wrong.

Dahmer also exuded more warmth.

:D

Tapioca Dextrin
10-12-2004, 07:50 PM
Where does Charles Manson fit in here? 35 years and counting and he never even killed anyone (or make a kllling with insider dealing).

Ephemera
10-12-2004, 07:59 PM
I get a bit of schadenfreud out of Stewart's conviction but have no real opinion on Dahmer as I was only around ten or so (I think) when he was arrested and didn't pay much attention to his story, obviously.

So, Dahmer gets the nod only because of apathy.

Sublight
10-12-2004, 08:04 PM
Stewart. I don't care much for her, I'm glad that she's being punished for what she did, and I feel some smug satisfaction that it was her arrogant overconfidence that got her caught.

Dahmer, on the other hand, was a sick, sadistic monster who tortured and killed people for his own amusement. No sympathy whatsoever for his incarceration or death.

Starving Artist
10-12-2004, 08:05 PM
Where does Charles Manson fit in here? Personally, I'd like to see him fit in an Iron Maiden. While the case could be made that he's nuts, I think a lot of it is an act. I think he's just a misanthrope who's taken it to the extreme.

Sublight
10-12-2004, 08:07 PM
I meant to add for Stewart:

...however, the crime she committed was motivated by the same everyday desires that just about everyone has, she was never a danger to others, and I wouldn't fear for the safety of my family if she moved into my neighborhood after being released.

levdrakon
10-12-2004, 08:29 PM
Neither gets sympathy, but Steward gets more spite. Damn rich bitch gettin' over.

TeaElle
10-12-2004, 08:50 PM
I have sympathy for the plight of Jeffrey Dahmer, because I am fairly positive that someone did something unspeakable to him as a small child which twisted his fragile mind. I also cannot understand why he was in the general population in prison; it seems to me that officials set him up to die, and that seems outrageously unfair.

As for Martha, I have a different kind of sympathy for her. Her punishment far outweighs her crime; the hit she took to her personal wealth as well as the wellbeing of her company is completely disproportionate to a $40k stock scam. And when I look at people like Ken Lay, walking around free while she's been sent to the federal pen, I've got to wonder where justice resides.

The Scrivener
10-12-2004, 08:51 PM
In a parallel universe, the ideal punishment for both would involve Martha Stewart giving Jeffrey Dahmer an extensive series of hands-on instruction in the domestic arts: home decorating, cooking and baking, entertaining, and personal grooming.

:D

Seriously, though, Dahmer was clearly nuts (even though he was found to be of sound enough mind to be criminally tried -- meaning that he was aware of the law as he was breaking it -- but that's fodder for another debate), and I felt some pity for him on that basis.

Stewart, OTOH, was greedy, arrogant and disdainful of the law, dishonest, and conniving, and to date unrepentant, and she deserves everything she's getting. That she's richer than Croesus (or was, before the Imclone affair blew up in her face) matters in that she didn't need the money.

carnivorousplant
10-12-2004, 09:23 PM
Martha Stewart.

There was a point when she could have just said "I'm sorry" and gotten a slap on the wrist. She defied authority and got screwed.

But I digress.

To compare a wealthy business person breaking stock law to a sadistic serial killer is silly.

Bottom line, I might have sold stock I knew was going South, but I wouldn't have eaten the stockholders.

Magickly Delicious
10-12-2004, 09:53 PM
Martha gets my sympathy. Her crime was motivated by fear, and she got screwed over where any man who did the same would have only received a slap on the wrist and much less media hysteria. I find it hard to feel sorry for murderers, regardless of the circumstances.

kevja
10-12-2004, 10:07 PM
Is guess this thread is not a woosh?

But it is the most vulgar question I can remember on the SDMB.

Dahmer was serial killer and a cannibal. I have zero sympathy for him considering how many families he devastated by his crimes.

kittenblue
10-12-2004, 10:09 PM
Martha gets my vote. She didn't kill, torture or eat anybody, nobody lost their retirement fund due to what she did, and people are only suffering financially because of what the court chose to do. She was greedy, but not evil.

Dahmer never did anything in his life that made anyone else's life better. Never created jobs, or inspired anyone's creativity...heck, he probably couldn't even make decent biscuits. All he did was destroy. No matter what his mental status, he had no right to kill. Sympathy for him is wasted.

Hey, It's That Guy!
10-13-2004, 12:39 AM
I think everyone thinks they're so cool for jumping on the Martha-bashing bandwagon. I'm no Martha Stewart fan, but it seems like her punishment does not fit her crime. She WAS greedy, she tried to play fast and loose with the law and got busted for it, and it seems like she didn't have the best possible legal representation either. She deserved SOME kind of punishment, but her sentencing seems rather extreme (especially compared to similar white-collar criminals like the aforementioned Kenneth Lay).

Jeffrey Dahmer was a sick, sadistic, perverted, evil bastard, and frankly, he got off easy. I don't see how anyone can say with a straight face that they empathize with a cannibalistic serial killer more than a greedy businesswoman who just got greedy and then got caught in a lie.

Sampiro
10-13-2004, 01:27 AM
Well, Martha and Jeffrey are alike in some ways. For example, both blew a few a dinners when they were first getting started.

masonite
10-13-2004, 03:41 AM
What a question. Obviously Dahmer's crimes were much worse than Martha's. Yet Dahmer suppoedly repented while in prison, and died there. If Dahmer is irredeemable, how am I reedeemable? My crimes were no worse, in spirit. If Jeff Dahmer's repentance was genuine, and he is not in Heaven now, how can I hope to ever get there?

Martha, on the other hand, seems unrepentant. But really, how could I know what's in her heart? We're only shown what the media want to show us. Which has a tenuous relation with reality. God forgive them both, and me too.

Caricci
10-13-2004, 08:19 AM
Martha, because she is being punished for being a difficult and wealthy woman. Her crime was practically a parking ticket compared to Enron.

Jeffrey Dahmer may have been made that way by some sort of abuse in childhood, but I didn't feel bad that he died in prison, not one bit.

Anaamika
10-13-2004, 09:00 AM
As Caricci pointed out, Martha, because she is only being punished for having the temerity to be a successful woman. With everything that happened with Enron etc., and this one woman is getting all the media hate. There's a definite tinge of "serves her right, the uppity bitch" from that quarter.

Dahmer is interesting, but I have no sympathy. There are other people who had traumatic and destructive childhoods who found a better path.

Wile E
10-13-2004, 09:03 AM
Martha Stewart.

...
Bottom line, I might have sold stock I knew was going South, but I wouldn't have eaten the stockholders.

Best quote so far.

Martha may not have come out and said she was sorry but she asked to get her sentence out of the way instead of dragging it out and waiting on the appeal process. I think that's as good a repentent Martha Stewart as your going to get and I think it took some balls to say the hell with the appeals and the waiting let's just get it over with.

I agree with those who say her punishment doesn't fit her crime. She could do more for the community by being required to do community service of some sort then vegetating in a prison making uniforms for other prisoners (at least they'll be stylish).

Also, who of us would have sat on a stock tip and lost money? Now how many of us would have lured young men into our homes then killed and eaten them? Hmm?

I have to say I have more sympathy for Martha. A cannibalistic serial killer gets absolutely no sympathy. Yes, something terrible may have happened to make him what he was, however lots of people have terrible things happen to them and they don't all turn into cannibalistic murderers. I think it's unfortunate that he ended up that way but that does not generate any sympathy - that all goes to the victims and their families.

Martha Stewart -"At least I don't eat people. It's a good thing."

Eliphalet
10-13-2004, 09:42 AM
Interesting to see how many people have more sympathy for Dahmer than Martha. Wonder if that's partially the band-aid of time covering up the wounds Dahmer caused.

If I had to chose, Martha would get more sympathy than Jeffrey. No one died, no one was seriously injured, and no one was cheated out of their life savings.

So she's not repentant, so what? She's not required to be. She's lost control of her company, she's now a convicted felon, and she's humiliated before the world.

What more would being sorry really get her? Who'd believe her anyway? We'd all say it was a calculated plea to reduce her sentence.

But she did not serve up her guests as finger food.

And I love this line:
Bottom line, I might have sold stock I knew was going South, but I wouldn't have eaten the stockholders.

Loach
10-13-2004, 10:10 AM
Also, who of us would have sat on a stock tip and lost money?

Good point. Also did anyone take the time to understand why Marta is in jail? She is in jail for lying during an investigation which turned up nothing. Not only was she not convicted, she was never indicted. On top of that, if she held on to the stock she dumped she would have made more money. Those poor little investors that were not able to sell the stock at a profit made more money than Martha did by dumping it. (She dumped it at $60. I think sometime later it went up above $80. I think it has since gone back down again below $60. Someone who follows the market can get better info. If she had good insider info she would have held on till the $80 mark.)

So on one hand you have someone who is jailed for lying about something that couldn't be proved to be illegal and lost money on the deal. She then lost millions due to the negative press coverage and publicity.

On the other hand you have a serial killer/cannibal.

Hummm who would I have more sympathy for.....

Saintly Loser
10-13-2004, 11:52 AM
Martha gets my sympathy. Her crime was motivated by fear, and she got screwed over where any man who did the same would have only received a slap on the wrist and much less media hysteria. I find it hard to feel sorry for murderers, regardless of the circumstances.

I'm not so sure we should be in a hurry to jump on the gender bandwagon here. . . Sam Waksal got seven years, and Stewart's co-defendant, Peter Bacanovic, got the same sentence she did. Douglas Faneuil got off with a fine, but he was charged with lesser offenses, and in addition provided testimony against Steward and Bacanovic.

SteveG1
10-13-2004, 12:07 PM
My sympathy goes to Martha, for the many reasons that were already given by others.

missbunny
10-13-2004, 01:17 PM
I'm appalled that anyone has any sympathy for Dahmer. He "cooperated fully with the authorities once he was found out"? How very convenient. Perhaps he could have "cooperated" at a more opportune time, like when that one young man managed to escape and pleaded with the police to help him, who then returned him to a his torture chamber. If he was so remorseful, that would have been a good time to admit what he was doing and get help.

Otto
10-13-2004, 01:21 PM
Dahmer never did anything in his life that made anyone else's life better. Never created jobs, or inspired anyone's creativity...heck, he probably couldn't even make decent biscuits. Not true (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0285728/).

Saintly Loser
10-13-2004, 01:31 PM
Dahmer did what he did because he was insane. Stewart did what she did because she was greedy. She didn't even need the money. It was nothing more than pocket change to her. Big difference.

While it's unquestionably true that Dahmer's actions were horrific, and Stewart didn't directly hurt anyone (although she and her co-criminals harmed the public's faith in our financial markets), it's hard to argue that someone like Dahmer can considered to be truly responsible for his actions (I know he was found to be legally sane enough to be tried, but it's beyond question that he was absolutely nuts, and driven by compulsions that the rest of us can't begin to understand).

It's also quite likely true that Dahmer was knowingly allowed to be murdered by the authorities while he was in prison, much as John Geoghan was in Massachusetts. I simply can't believe that whoever was running whatever correctional facility housed Dahmer didn't know the risks of putting him in the general population. So Dahmer's murder was, to some extent, the result of an extra-judicial death sentence. Being opposed to the death penalty in all cases (that can arise in a developed society), that scores him a few points on my sympathy meter.

carnivorousplant
10-13-2004, 01:46 PM
I know he was found to be legally sane enough to be tried, but it's beyond question that he was absolutely nut
Those two seem to be a bit at odds.

missbunny
10-13-2004, 02:09 PM
(I know he was found to be legally sane enough to be tried, but it's beyond question that he was absolutely nuts, and driven by compulsions that the rest of us can't begin to understand).

Why do you think he was nuts and driven by compulsions? Because he did things that were really really gross? That would make pretty much all mutilating murderers driven by compulsions. I for one believe some people murder other people because they like doing it. Not because they're crazy.

Maybe Martha was driven by compulsions to make more money.

Sampiro
10-13-2004, 02:12 PM
Jeffrey Dahmer may have been made that way by some sort of abuse in childhood, but I didn't feel bad that he died in prison, not one bit.

The only time I can remember laughing at anything Victoria Jackson said or did on SNL was when she was an editorialist on a Weekend Update segment about prison violence the week after Dahmer's murder. After an impassioned plea about how just because they are incarcerated doesn't mean they aren't people she asks the audience "Just how many Jeffrey Dahmers are going to have to die before we say we're mad as hell and not gonna take it anymore?"

I'm afraid I'm in the "I don't care if he was raised by Joan Crawford, Bing Crosby and a pack of rabid dingos, he needed killin'."

Saintly Loser
10-13-2004, 02:55 PM
Why do you think he was nuts and driven by compulsions? Because he did things that were really really gross? That would make pretty much all mutilating murderers driven by compulsions. I for one believe some people murder other people because they like doing it. Not because they're crazy.

Maybe Martha was driven by compulsions to make more money.

I think he was nuts and driven by compulsions because his actions speak for themselves. We all have our quirks, but his were a bit outside the pale of sanity.
We're all capable of getting a bit greedy, like Ms. Stewart, but because we're sane, we don't steal (or otherwise violate applicable law or SEC regulations). And because we're sane, the law holds us responsible. Because we're not compelled to steal (except in cases of dire need), we're expected to keep our greed in check, or at least channel it into acceptable areas (like, say, Warren Buffet).

While wanting the property of others is sort of built into human nature (just watch kids playing sometime), wanting to create brain-dead zombies for one's sexual pleasure is not. The desire, in and of itself, is pretty good evidence that something is seriously wrong with the person having the desire.

WordMan
10-13-2004, 03:01 PM
To compare a wealthy business person breaking stock law to a sadistic serial killer is silly.

My thoughts exactly - like comparing apples and monkey wrenches. I opened this thread thinking "they can't really mean....can they?"

Saintly Loser
10-13-2004, 03:02 PM
Martha gets my sympathy. Her crime was motivated by fear, and she got screwed over where any man who did the same would have only received a slap on the wrist and much less media hysteria. I find it hard to feel sorry for murderers, regardless of the circumstances.

As I posted above, the gender thing is a straw man in this case. The men involved in the case received, in one case (Peter Bacanovic), exactly the same sentence as did Ms. Stewart, and in another, a sentence that is approximately seventeen times that meted out to Ms. Stewart (granted, Sam Waksal was the ringleader, and stood to gain more by his crimes).

As to the media hysteria, Ms. Stewart, over her career, has intentionally made herself into a public figure. The media hysteria is a direct result of her own desire to be in the public eye.

And her crime may indeed have been motivated by fear, but it was fear of getting caught, not fear for life or limb.

Saintly Loser
10-13-2004, 03:04 PM
Those two seem to be a bit at odds.

Not really. There's a world of difference between legal insanity and being bat-shit nuts. I'm neither a lawyer nor a psychiatrist, but perhaps someone more knowledgeable than I could clarify this here.

JohnBckWLD
10-13-2004, 03:24 PM
Where does Charles Manson fit in here? 35 years and counting and he never even killed anyone (or make a kllling with insider dealing).Where did you hear the far-out hijack that Manson "never even killed anyone?" The only place i could think of would be at a Free Mumia charity benefit concert.

I'll concede the fact Leslie Van Houten probably didn't 'kill anyone' (she's alleged to have only stabbed Rosemary LaBianca post-mortem). As far as Manson goes:
1. On the 1st night of his Helter Skelter race war scheme, he directed the five murderers at the Tate house.
2. He broke into the house of & tied up the aforementioned Rosemary and her husband Leno LaBianca prior to sending in his human wolves to shred them apart.
3. He killed and buried Spahn ranch hand Donald Shorty Shea.
4. He murdered (Former Family Memeber) Bobby Beausoleil
5. He was possibly involved in the murder of his attorney
6. Bugliosi goes on to list a whole host of others who definitely weren't beamed up aboard the mothership.

As far as where I'd place my sympathies - definitely more with proverbially jaywalking Martha than a perverted cannibal who finally got the justice he deserved in the big house.

Saintly Loser
10-13-2004, 03:37 PM
As far as where I'd place my sympathies - definitely more with proverbially jaywalking Martha than a perverted cannibal who finally got the justice he deserved in the big house.

I don't really like this line of thinking. We shouldn't think it's "[getting] the justice he deserved" when a killer is murdered in prison. It's murder, plain and simple. We haven't made the status of the victim a justification for murder yet in this country (I know that people will point out that in fact, we have done exactly that in the past, but that's a perversion of the law rather than the law itself).

Dahmer's murder in prison had nothing to do with justice. He was murdered. It's entirely possible that he was set up to be murdered by the authorities responsible for his custody.

Dahmer's sentence had everything to do with justice. He deserved to be punished for his crimes. It was necessary to segregate him from society, because it was certainly likely that he'd repeat his crimes.

But he wasn't sentenced to death.

carnivorousplant
10-13-2004, 03:55 PM
We shouldn't think it's "[getting] the justice he deserved"

I take this to mean the person should die in the opinion of the speaker even though a court decided s/he should serve life.

Saintly Loser
10-13-2004, 03:57 PM
I take this to mean the person should die in the opinion of the speaker even though a court decided s/he should serve life.

Well, right. Not in my opinion, but in that of the quoted poster, I guess. And it's not just the court's opinion that Dahmer should have received a life sentence. It's the will of the people of the state in which he committed his crimes, as expressed and codified by their state legislature and implemented by the courts of that state.

Boyo Jim
10-13-2004, 04:23 PM
Well, right. Not in my opinion, but in that of the quoted poster, I guess. And it's not just the court's opinion that Dahmer should have received a life sentence. It's the will of the people of the state in which he committed his crimes, as expressed and codified by their state legislature and implemented by the courts of that state.

Thay would be my state, Wisconsin, which for 150 years or so has never seen fit to enact a death penalty. I like that about this place.

JohnBckWLD
10-13-2004, 04:27 PM
I don't really like this line of thinking. We shouldn't think it's "[getting] the justice he deserved" when a killer is murdered in prison.I apologize for posting my initial, emotional, GD-sounding reply in an IMHO poll thread. My sympathies always seem fall on the side of the victim's family (or in this case; 17 families).

Sampiro
10-14-2004, 04:28 AM
4. He murdered (Former Family Memeber) Bobby Beausoleil

Niptick: Bobby Beausoleil is still alive (albeit incarcerated for life). In fact he has a
web site (http://www.beausoleil.net) .

calm kiwi
10-14-2004, 05:01 AM
Thay would be my state, Wisconsin, which for 150 years or so has never seen fit to enact a death penalty. I like that about this place.

No death penalty and good cheese, sounds delightful.

Mockingbird
10-14-2004, 05:16 AM
Well, Martha and Jeffrey are alike in some ways. For example, both blew a few a dinners when they were first getting started.

Wow... those Dahmer jokes get FUNNIER AND FUNNIER each time I hear them.

I lived in Milwaukee at the time... I lived less than a half mile away. There wasn't anything funny about it... ever.

Plenty of clueless people and others who were working out their issues were making Dahmer jokes.

They weren't funny then. Your gallows humor is disgusting.

Annie-Xmas
10-14-2004, 07:31 AM
Stewart committed a crime and tried not to get caught.

Dahmer committed many, many crimes over and over and tried not to get caught. The first time the police came to his door with a naked 14 year old boy, he claimed it was a "lover's spat." Dahmer groupies claim he did good by "destroying gay trash."

I'd rather met up with Martha than with Jeffrey. But that's just me.

Shodan
10-14-2004, 07:47 AM
Now how many of us would have lured young men into our homes then killed and eaten them? Hmm? Oh sure - I try the Atkins diet, make one or two little faux pas, and I never hear the end of it.

Regards,
Shodan

Trunk
10-14-2004, 08:01 AM
Wow... those Dahmer jokes get FUNNIER AND FUNNIER each time I hear them.

I lived in Milwaukee at the time... I lived less than a half mile away. There wasn't anything funny about it... ever.

Plenty of clueless people and others who were working out their issues were making Dahmer jokes.

They weren't funny then. Your gallows humor is disgusting.

Who gives a crap if you lived in Milwaukee? Pull the stick out of your butt. That was the funniest joke I've read in a while.

Anyway, I have some sympathy for Martha because I really think that the forcefulness of the prosecution had more to do with who she was than what she did. That is, she was treated, in a sense, unfairly by the justice system.

I have symphathy for Dahmer because he shouldn't have been killed in jail like that. I also find it hard to believe that a guy just turns out to do such evil as him without someone having done such evil TO him. So, if that's true, I have some sympathy for him as a person. Less, obviously, if he was just a sicko who enjoyed torturing people. I don't know his story.

carnivorousplant
10-14-2004, 09:00 AM
Less, obviously, if he was just a sicko who enjoyed torturing people.

I'm sure all the body parts lying around the house were from humane kills.
:)

ninetypercent
10-14-2004, 09:18 AM
Also neither.

the life and times of Mr. Dahmer : http://www.crimelibrary.com/serial_killers/notorious/dahmer/naked1.html

While in jail, Dahmer was beaten to death by a schizophrenia man who was acting on the command of God. This was right after he became a born-again Christian.

We are free of his presence and Satan lost the battle for his soul. The Lord works in mysterious ways..

crimelibrary is an excellent site, by the way. Read the one on Albert Fish. Truly disturbing.

Trunk
10-14-2004, 09:29 AM
crimelibrary is an excellent site, by the way. Read the one on Albert Fish. Truly disturbing.

Yeah. Albert Fish has never gotten the proper respect he deserves.

He should definitely be in the upper echelon with Ted Bundy, Dahmer and John Wayne Gacy.

He needs a movie or a better PR firm.

Agrippina
10-14-2004, 09:57 AM
HH Holmes (http://www.crimelibrary.com/serial_killers/history/holmes/index_1.html) was pretty disturbing. A man who built a "hotel of horrors" during the 1893 Chicago World's Fair. Lured people into this hotel and killed them in creative ways.

D_Odds
10-14-2004, 10:08 AM
We are free of his presence and Satan lost the battle for his soul. The Lord works in mysterious ways..

I'm sure that comforts the victims families.

Sampiro
10-14-2004, 10:47 AM
HH Holmes (http://www.crimelibrary.com/serial_killers/history/holmes/index_1.html) was pretty disturbing. A man who built a "hotel of horrors" during the 1893 Chicago World's Fair. Lured people into this hotel and killed them in creative ways.

"Soon to be a major motion picture" starring Leonardo DiCaprio, incidentally. (It began as a movie version of the recent bestseller Devil in the White City but has been whittled down to just Holmes.)

JohnBckWLD
10-14-2004, 01:27 PM
Niptick: Bobby Beausoleil is still alive (albeit incarcerated for life). In fact he has a
web site (http://www.beausoleil.net) .Sorry, brain fart. With all these corpses, I get em confused.

Walloon
10-15-2004, 12:18 AM
Tony Hughes, the young deaf-mute man whose skull was found in Dahmer's apartment, was a friend of a friend. Another friend was the only journalist to enter Dahmer's apartment on the night of his arrest before the police began tearing it apart. An acquaintance found one of Dahmer's "practice" victims. And a high school classmate's father was Dahmer's defense attorney.

Dahmer had every reason during the insanity portion of his trial to come up with mitigating causes for his mental abberations. He went into sickening detail, for his psychiatrist and attorney, about his methods, and the sexual thrills he would get with the corpses. But he made no claim about being abused in any way as a child.

Ozchick
10-15-2004, 02:02 AM
Why do you think he was nuts and driven by compulsions? Because he did things that were really really gross? That would make pretty much all mutilating murderers driven by compulsions. I for one believe some people murder other people because they like doing it. Not because they're crazy.

.

I couldn't agree more. It is a common misconception, even among many health care professionals, that just because someone committed creimes no mentally healthy person would commit, that therefore they are not guilty of the crimes by reason of insanity. No one denies Dahmer was sick, but the court at the time found that Dahmer was
a) sane enough to know what he was doing was wrong; and
b) not driven by compulsions he couldn't withstand.

If (a) or (b) had been the case, he would have been sent to a mental hospital, not jail.

Having said that, Dahmer's case is not straightforward. Even among the FBI's serial crime unit, behavioural profiling experts debate Dahmer's sanity...mostly along the "compulsions"line."*

However, a true psychotic, driven by compulsions they couldn't control, would actually be very unlikely to become a serial killer, simply because they would not be able to get very far without being caught. Their compulsions would HAVE to be acted on any time, any place they arose...ie even in broad daylight, in front of witnesses. End of criminal career.

To quote the former head of FBI's behavioural science unit:

Keep in mind that no serial killer in my experience has ever felt so compelled to kill that he did so in the presence of a uniformed police officer. **

Bottom line, if they only do it when no one's looking, they are not under the control of "compulsions".


*"Mindhunter", by John Douglas, p256
** ditto, p348

Ozchick
10-15-2004, 02:19 AM
Where did you hear the far-out hijack that Manson "never even killed anyone?" The only place i could think of would be at a Free Mumia charity benefit concert.

I'll concede the fact Leslie Van Houten probably didn't 'kill anyone' (she's alleged to have only stabbed Rosemary LaBianca post-mortem). As far as Manson goes:
1. On the 1st night of his Helter Skelter race war scheme, he directed the five murderers at the Tate house.
2. He broke into the house of & tied up the aforementioned Rosemary and her husband Leno LaBianca prior to sending in his human wolves to shred them apart.
3. He killed and buried Spahn ranch hand Donald Shorty Shea.
4. He murdered (Former Family Memeber) Bobby Beausoleil
5. He was possibly involved in the murder of his attorney
6. Bugliosi goes on to list a whole host of others who definitely weren't beamed up aboard the mothership.

As far as where I'd place my sympathies - definitely more with proverbially jaywalking Martha than a perverted cannibal who finally got the justice he deserved in the big house.

Not meaning to nitpick, but are you sure of the above facts? I always thought that Manson never actually killed anybody with his own hands, only (not that it makes a difference morally), but by exerting control over the inadequate nobodies who proclaimed him as their god and leader.

In the case of Leno and Rosemary LaBianca, I thought Manson only came to their house after his "Family members" had killed and mutilated them. (Again - like that makes a moral difference - the guy was still the instigator. No way should he ever get parole.)

TitoBenito
10-15-2004, 02:19 AM
I can sympathize with greedy people. I can be greedy so I understand it. Sometimes people do bad things for money, but that doesnt mean they are horrible people. I don't have any sympathy for the desire to mutalate and murder someone for a sexual high. In fact I feel a thousand time more sympathy for mosquitos I swat then I have for humans with such desires.

Mockingbird
10-15-2004, 02:51 AM
Who gives a crap if you lived in Milwaukee? Pull the stick out of your butt. That was the funniest joke I've read in a while.


I guess that's the difference between having a soul or not.

I'm so glad you can find amusement in the grisly death of so many.

Walloon
10-15-2004, 02:52 AM
CourtTV: (http://www.courttv.com/archive/verdicts/manson_092498.html) As Manson supporters are always eager to point out, Manson did not kill anyone at the Tate and LaBianca residences. However, Manson ordered Tex Watson, Patricia Krenwinkel and Susan Atkins to kill everyone at the Tate residence. The following night, Manson tied up Leno and Rosemary LaBianca, left their house and ordered Watson, Krenwinkel and Leslie Van Houten to go in and kill the couple. Manson cut off Gary Hinman's ear with a sword while demanding Hinman's inheritance a few days before Hinman was killed. He also delivered some of the fatal stab wounds to ranch-hand Donald "Shorty" Shea.

Annie-Xmas
10-15-2004, 07:39 AM
As crime attorney and sexually abuse children's advocate has stated: Don't confuse "sickening" with "sick." Were Dahmer's actions sickening? You betcha. Was he sick? I don't think so. He did what he did cause he enjoyed it.

Were Martha Stewart's actions sickening? I doubt it. I might have done what she did, but I would never under any circumstances do what Dahmer did.

Boyo Jim
10-15-2004, 07:14 PM
...Were Martha Stewart's actions sickening? ....

Are you kidding? Haven't you ever seen one of her window dressings?

Absolutely. :p