I am anxious.
There is nothing that makes me anxious. I have anxiety.
Things may cause that anxiety to manifest. When those things go away, I feel less anxious. But the anxiety is not cured.
It’s like having a medical condition. If you have asthma, you always have asthma. You can take medication to get it under control. It’s not like you are not able to breathe every second of your life. Certain conditions, weather, or whatever will trigger a condition that you always have. Because you sometimes do not have the symptoms does not mean you are cured.
I have anxiety. Whatever. Old news. Sometimes everything’s cool and sometimes it’s not.
Facebook is cool. I like it. I use it to keep in touch with people and see how their lives are going. It’s especially useful to keep in touch with people you know and/or care about but would otherwise not see or talk to that often.
I also use it to kind of consolidate web sites I like into one place. You can tailor it to your interests. I use it for news or entertainment or information or whatever.
It can get to be a bit much, though, especially when there is a big issue of the day. I get it, Star Wars is coming out and there is ISIS and Donald Trump and police scandals and political scandals and a presidential race and Paris and Kardashians and on and on. I would keep repeating the same stories with the same characters to get the most views I could until something else comes along too if it meant my sponsors would get as much exposure as possible.
Not that you should have noticed but I quit Facebook for like a month over this past fall. I don’t watch much TV so for awhile there I had some clarity. I did get a little bored and obviously came back. I don’t like feeling uninformed.
Like I said, though, ignorance is not an excuse but can be bliss.
So this #7 blog was going to be about something different altogether, something about all the cousins I have and some comments on that. There are a lot of them and I’m friends with most of them on Facebook and staying in touch with their lives is a big reason I am on it to begin with. I’m sure I’ll get back to that.
But I was scrolling though my Facebook news feed not a few hours ago and I came across this:
It made me feel anxious.
I’m not going to get into the whole story here. You can look this douchebag up on the internet and read all about this story if you want. A quick summary, though:
Dude’s in jail for a long time for a rape he did not commit. Some college kids and their professor help him get out with DNA samples or something. He was out for awhile but then he and his nephew raped and murdered a woman. I know they burned her body up in a bonfire after, but I don’t remember if they chopped her up first or not to make the burning easier.
I know I look at the internet too much. You can find any type of statistic you want to tailor something to your point of view. So I looked at a lot of sites. Let’s just say that the number of murders in the US per year is around 15,000, plus or minus some thousands or so.
Yeah, that’s like 42 per day. Today, 42 people were murdered in the United States.
If we didn’t get desensitized to those kind of numbers we’d probably go crazy. If you thought about those numbers too hard you might feel a certain way. You might feel…anxious.
I’m not sure why this particular murder has stuck with me over the years. I pretty sure I can’t name any of the other 14,999 or so that may have happened that year. I’m not sure why the story of her rape and murder, of her getting stabbed in the stomach and getting her throat slit still comes to me, years later. The murder itself is not unique or better or worse than thousands of other murders. The murder, or his circumstance may be unique, I guess. It’s just kind of stuck there and comes up once in awhile. Maybe because it happened in Wisconsin. Maybe I’m just not all the way desensitized.
Her name was Teresa Halbach.
The news, or the internet, or the Facebook scroll tends to focus on the people that commit the murders rather than the victims. I just searched for how to spell her name and the first listing that came up was the name of her murderer.
Here are a list of murderers I can name without looking them up:
- Jack the Ripper
- Ted Bundy
- Jeffery Dahmer
- John Wayne Gacy
- Ed Gein
- Richard Speck
- Son of Sam
- Charles Manson
- Erik Harris and Dylan Klebold
- Osama bin Laden
I mean, there are so many more, ones that I cannot name but know their face and know what they did. I’m sure you can add to the list. They killed a lot of people and it’s such a small list.
Here are their victims I can name:
- Anne Frank
- Oliver Lacy (Dahmer killed this guy. The only reason I know his name is because he went to school with one of my cousins.)
- Sharon Tate
They sell books and make movies and TV shows about and based on people who kill other people. True Crime is a genre of media and entertainment. People make money off of these people who kill other people.
So Netflix has this True Crime documentary series or something. They have one coming out tomorrow about this guy. I shouldn’t judge it because I have not seen it. I’ll want to watch it but it’ll probably make me too anxious and I’ll have to stop watching anyway. I feel like it is going to focus on him and not her but I don’t know that for sure.
Maybe there should be a True Victim genre. Maybe there should be books and movies and shows about them and their lives before their murders. Maybe we should focus on them and they would become more than just a number. I’m not sure that would be quite as entertaining.
I’m ambivalent about the death penalty. I don’t believe in Hell.
I do hope that this guy gets shanked in prison and burns for all eternity.
I’ll be less anxious by tomorrow. I feel a little better just writing this down. My wife and daughter are watching some show in the living room as I type this in the kitchen. I’m not sure what it is but they are cracking up. I’ll probably go watch that. Maybe I’ll go on YouTube and look at some funny video clips. Something with silly cats or silly babies or silly babies playing with cats. But I’ll still have anxiety.
Fuck you Facebook and Netflix.
I’m sure I’ll see you tomorrow!
#8 – Cousins, or We are Family (for real this time)