Dead Names, Dead Dog: Dangerous Words?, Part 2

In The Necronomicon Files, we provide evidence from two cases that we suggest might have been inspired by the doctrines in the Necronomicon. One is that of Roderick Ferrell of Florida, and the other Glen Mason of Santa Monica.

My views vary slightly from John’s on this point. Both of us agree that a wide variety of factors – heredity, environment, childhood experiences, education, and so forth – affect whether a person becomes a criminal. John also believes that a person’s reading experiences might be the source of such behavior. I’m not so sure, but I do think that a person’s experiences with media – books, magazines, films, and computer games – can affect the way in which a particular pathology manifests. Neither of us thinks that those involved are necessarily to blame, but that one should nonetheless proceed with care when giving information that could be used to harm another.

“Simon”, on the other hand, tells us in Dead Names that he’s not to blame. In fact, he thinks we’re completely nuts for making any such claim:

The fact that both Mason and Ferrell were disturbed youths from broken homes with a history of antisocial acting out is ignored in favor the more sensationalistic claim that somehow the Necronomicon was responsible for their crimes.

“Simon”, of course, is using the word “ignored” in the little-known sense of “brought it up”. Here’s a passage from The Necronomicon Files on Ferrell:

Also cited as mitigating circumstances were Ferrell’s medical history, his history as a victim of child abuse, and even his mother’s affair with a fourteen-year-old boy.

And on Mason:

What was the motivation for this bizarre crime? A number of factors seem to have contributed to it – Mason’s troubled childhood, his need for control over the underage girls who lived in his squat, and concocted allegations that Shevawn was a “snitch.”

John doesn’t dwell on these other causes at any length. This is simply because he’s writing The Necronomicon Files and not Motivating Factors for Juvenile Violence.

One thing “Simon” is entirely sure of is that other works surely must be as much, if not more, to blame for any crimes committed. For example, here’s what he says about Ferrell:

If one had to blame a book for the crimes, it seems obvious that the novels of Anne Rice would be higher on the list of contenders…

One wonders what influence The Lion King and Aladdin had over the obviously suggestible teens.

Sounds reasonable, doesn’t it? After all, wasn’t one compelled to wonder about those Disney movies? Well, the reason it does is because “Simon” deliberately ignores – in the sense of “not paying attention to” – some evidence in our book, like this:

Psychologist Wade Myers III testified that Ferrell “felt he was able to get powers from this book [the Necronomicon].”

What sort of powers were those? Let’s see…

John Goodman, a member of the Vampire Clan, said Ferrell “had become possessed with opening the Gates to Hell, which meant he would have to kill a large number of people in order to consume their souls. By doing this, Ferrell believed he would gain super powers.”

If “Simon” wishes to argue that his book is completely not to blame for any sort of crime, I’m sure many people would agree. One wonders how strong he actually thinks his argument is, however, if he has to set aside pieces of evidence when he makes it.

Published in: on August 17, 2006 at 7:55 pm  Comments (2)  

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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Now, I havn’t read many of the books refered to here… but uh… has Disney ever claimed Aladdin or the Lion King were true? Anne Rice also seems pretty happy with her books being labled fiction…

    So, when listing books which are more influential than his supposed work of “fact”, he can only refer to unashamedly Fictional works?

    Am I the only one who uh, finds that strange?

  2. You’re not. To be perfectly fair, “Simon” does use examples that aren’t fictional at times, but they’re his usual stock in trade.

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