The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK


June 12, 2008

Murders of two girls makes a death penalty believer

This week I toast the lawman, good Samaritan or vigilante who eventually tracks down and catches the murderer or murderers of 13-year-old Taylor Paschal-Placker and 11-year-old Skyla Whitaker. (And the murderers will be caught.)

The girls’ bodies were found Sunday by Peter Placker, Taylor’s grandfather, about a quarter-mile from his home in the countryside outside Weleetka.

What kind of a monster, or monsters, kills two young girls who simply were out on a country walk on a warm summer afternoon during their summer break from school?

The monster, or monsters, will be caught, and I hope and pray it’s very soon — which probably will happen given the high concentration of law enforcement attention on the case.

This horrific, evil crime conjures up remembrances of the murders of the Clutter family, an innocent farm family from Holcomb, Kan., in 1959 — the events that formed the basis of the Truman Capote novel, “In Cold Blood.” Compared to Paschal-Placker and Whitaker, the poor Clutter souls equally were innocent, blameless and victimized by consummate evil masquerading in human form.

On that note, I once had a college theology professor try to explain seemingly unexplainable acts of evil — like the Ted Bundy, Charles Manson and Jeffrey Dahmer serial killing sprees, for example, and similar horrendous crimes, like the Sunday murders of Whitaker and Paschal-Placker — by suggesting the murderer(s) was “possessed by Beelzebub.” The other students and I chortled and chuckled at our professor’s notion. In the subsequent 20 years or so since I heard the demon-possession concept, I have come to think, why not? Maybe these consummate evil-doers are indeed possessed by consummate evil?

Which is all the more reason to try them quickly and then execute them swiftly. For the monsters who killed those two young girls to be executed like the character Eduard Delacroix in the movie “The Green Mile” — the convict who is consumed by flames from his shoulders up while being over-dosed with electricity on the electric chair — would seem an appropriate way for one or more of Beelzebub’s incarnations to exit this world. If that theology professor’s theory holds true, anyway.

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