Society and the Killing Machine

      July 18, 2004 21:07

      The acts of Yoo Young-chul, the suspect in the notorious serial killing spree who was caught yesterday, is terribly abominable and miserably hopeless, but most of all, it is terrifying. This man in his 30s is said to have killed 19 people since last September, which means that he killed two people per month. How could a person commit such a crime if he did not view people as objects and killing as something he does everyday?

      Most of the victims were elderly people who lived in quiet residence areas that were far removed from the street and poor massage parlor girls. They had no relations with the murderer and did not do anything that might have made him hold grudges against them. They were just so weak that they could not defend themselves from this crazy act of killing. Even healthy normal people would not be able to defend themselves from such a hate crime or abnormal crime that indiscriminately targets a wide number of people.

      Going from village to village to hunt for victims, Yoo especially looked for houses where elderly people lived. He also carried dismembered bodies of the women he killed in a bag to a mountain in Seoul and buried them there. How horrible! Who knows -- some people may have encountered this heartless "killing machine" one day on the street? They should consider themselves lucky, because it is hardly possible to depend on the police, who did almost nothing or could do almost nothing until they caught the suspect who confessed to his crimes when police caught him by chance.

      Yoo had been isolated from the society for 11 years in total by being sent to prison 14 times since he was put in prison for theft as a teen. He has never lived a normal life as an ordinary member of society, knowing nothing but theft and intimidation. He held groundless grudges against the wealthy, blaming his discouraging position on them. He also grew to hate women after his wife divorced him while he was in prison. That is why he was aimed at rich elderly people and low-class women. In other words, the serial murder took place because a discouraged person attributed his misery to other unspecified people and social structures without reason. This is worrying given the social atmosphere in which people turn their eyes outside to look for causes when things go wrong.

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