Friends who know I have some experience in law enforcement and court management often ask why it takes so long to reach a guilty verdict for defendants we know are guilty. Some, like the Boston Marathon creep, even admit they did it and it still takes months to get to a result. Why?
I know why, and I could probably even explain why, but although I know and for the most part understand why, I don’t like even thinking about it in cases like the Boston Marathon creep, that Army major who murdered all those people at Ft. Hood, or the guy in trial now in Raleigh whose defense is he only meant to kill himself and not the lovely young woman and wife of his childhood friend.
In “People of the Lie, The Hope for Healing Human Evil,” (M. Scott Peck, 1983, Simon and Schuster), the author demonstrates by examples from his practice as a psychiatrist that evil does exist. Does anybody think that murder is not evil, that taking another life (or lives) can only be done by someone with a screw loose or a crossed wire in the brain?
I admit to being an energetic and avid M. Scott Peck fan. His “The Road Less Travelled,” first given to me by a friend of many years when I was going through one of life’s rough patches, has influenced me greatly to this day. So when Dr. Peck writes about the existence of evil and backs it up with actual behavioral examples, I accept that there is evil.
What to do about it is a whole other problem, and it’s a good thing I’m not in total control of what should happen to evil-doers because my methods would be way too close to those awful depictions of hell in those huge paintings from centuries past.
That it takes so much time to get the evil-doers to hell is annoying and frustrating, that it’s too slow.
But I still consider it the best there is.