On November 19, 2017, Charles Manson died in his prison cell in California. The infamous 83-year-old cult leader had been in prison since 1969 on several homicide charges.
As many know Charles Manson was a cult leader in California in the 1960’s. His cult, unoriginally known as “The Manson Family” were plied with drugs, taught about an upcoming race war, and were responsible for 9 murders. Manson himself never actually killed anyone, and he never ordered anyone killed. His ideology was considered to be a part of the conspiracy to commit murder. He was eventually charged with and convicted of seven of the nine murders that his followers committed.
The prosecution charged Manson along with the followers who actually committed the murders. Several witnesses acknowledged that Manson was aware of the murders and preached that killing people would incite the inevitable race war. He told his followers that the Manson Family would not only survive the race war, but essentially rule whatever was left over at its conclusion. This incentive to his brainwashed followers was enough to convince juries that Manson was guilty. The fact that he carved an “X” on his forehead before the trial started probably didn’t assuage jurors that he would be a productive member of society if acquitted. Towards the end of the trial Manson attempted to stab the presiding judge with a sharpened pencil, but was restrained. Manson’s lawyers requested a mistrial due to the fact that President Nixon weighed in on the case against Manson, but this request was denied.
After his convictions, Manson was sentenced to death, but his punishment was later changed to life imprisonment as California ruled the death penalty unconstitutional in 1972. In the early 1980’s he was allowed to give interviews to the media. Growing up it seemed like this guy was on TV more than Ronald Reagan. Despite being visibly insane and completely incoherent, newsmen lined up to hear his take on life. He had fashioned the X on his forehead into a swastika and continued to preach his bizarre ideology. It didn’t dissuade the interview parade. He was even allowed to record an acoustic pop record produced by Henry Rollins.
In 2017 Manson fell ill from gastrointestinal bleeding. He was diagnosed with colon cancer. He died in a prison hospital on November 19, 2017. The media would have to find another story to promote.