Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Notes from a busted civilization.

Rocky Barton was a defective unit. I'm not really sure why he was defective; maybe his momma didn't love him, maybe his daddy was an ass, maybe he didn't get a pony for Christmas when he was a kid, maybe he was just a bad seed. Regardless, he was defective.

He offered proof of his nature, as well as offering society a chance to return him to the manufacturer for warranty work, when he savagely beat his second wife, stabbed her, and slit her throat. Since she lived, society instead decided he was worthy of rehabilitation and sentenced him to fifteen years in the big house. After eight years, since he promised he wouldn't ever do such a thing again, society let him walk. He promptly beat his third wife and was, instead of being given the necktie party he'd earned, sent back to the pokey. For one year.

While he was still in the slammer, a childhood friend named Kimbirli married him in a triumph of optimism over good sense of the kind that keeps PowerBall afloat. Not long after he got out, he was busted for... Can you guess? That's right, beating on Kimbirli. She didn't, however, press charges, and so he was allowed to remain free. Months later, fed up, she moved out, and the situation spun towards its inevitable denouement. Kimbirli came over to his house to pick up some stuff, escorted by her daughter and Rocky's uncle. Mindful of his promise to society that he would never again slit his wife's throat, Rocky instead blew Kimbirli away with two blasts from a shotgun, then turned it on himself.

Because the universe is basically unfair, he survived turning the lower half of his face into pink mist.

Because the universe is very, very unfair, you and I paid for his medical bills, including reconstructive surgery.

Now, finally, we're paying to do what should have been done nigh twenty years back: Put an end to Rocky's oxygen thievery. After fixing his face, of course, instead of leaving him lying on his front lawn to bleed out as he so richly deserved.

In the midst of the midden heap of this sordid tale gleams one gem of black humor. Rocky's uncle, Paul, speaking on the events of that black afternoon, said
"I still can't figure out what happened or why... I thought Rocky was fine."
Let me get this straight: You thought that a man who once beat a woman within an inch of her life, slit her throat, and left her for dead, was fine?

That's okay, Paul. Although you should feel like an idiot for thinking that, you shouldn't feel like a lonely one. Despite ample warning signals, society apparently thought he was just fine, too. Even Kimbirli did.

Right up to the end.

(H/T to Zendo Deb.)


BobG said...

And yet there are a lot of jackasses out there who will focus on the shotgun and tell us that it could have all been avoided with more gun laws. As a matter of fact, the Brady Bunch probably has him listed as one of the "victims" of a shooting...any bets?

pdb said...

Many, many, many, MANY moon ago, I tended peecees for a major bank in NC. One of my officemates was a young, nice, pretty girl who was about 50% along with a pregnancy. As you can probably guess, she was not married to the sperm donor, who was a member of the county's Junior Reprobates program. He had a long relationship with local law enforcement but had not yet graduated to violent offenses.


Anyway, the girl was always whining about him. One morning it was particularly bad. Tears were deployed.

"Oh pdb, why does he be so mean to me? He called me fat, he runs around with my sister and her friend, he always has my new car, and I have to drive his heap. And he said he was gonna hit me! Why does he treat me like that?"

I don't know if it was because I'd stubbed my toe in the morning, or if I'd had a crappy commute, or the gas station was out of my favorite donuts, or because I had just accepted a new position and would be out of there in a few weeks.

"Damnit, because you let him! Have you left? Have you kicked him out? Have you called the cops on him when he takes your car or gotten a restraining order when he said he'd hit you? No? Well, then that's why he keeps doing it! Because you LET HIM!"

She sighs. "You know, you're right. But I love him so much!"


I really don't know what happened with it. She seemed a little perked up after our chat, but somehow I have the suspicion that her paramour got another pass.

Oh, and the girl's name?


I Kid You Not.


Chuck@PodunkOutpost said...

Another wonderful example of why Tam is my first read of the day...

Manual Trackback

ColtCCO said...

Really makes me wish we could have saved thousands of tax dollars and a young lady, and passed the savings along as a bonus, years ago. Guess we'de be called "Vigilantes" or something though, for cicumventing the Justice System.

On another note - Hi, Tam!

phlegmfatale said...

In an ideal world, the relatives of the abused woman would get a crack at the mofo. My nod to a level playing field would be to limit the relatives to weaponry equal in advantage of him proportionate to advantage he had over his victim. For example, if he weighed 200 pounds and the victim was 100, then two 250 pound Hoss fellows might best show him the error of his ways. That is, for the 15 remaining minutes of his sorry existence.
It's tragic that that animated pieces of offal such as this should be so protected by our legal system. Let him dangle.