365 Project – Day 264 – Why I Love Dexter

I’ve always been rather fascinated with the way the human mind works–how we learn things, how we process information, impulses, feelings, attitudes, behaviors. I think that if I hadn’t been driven by such a passion to write and pursue a degrees in English and writing, I probably would have been quite content to study psychology and try to unravel the intricacies of the human mind.

I was even more fascinated with criminal psychology, the way the minds of serial killers work, the strange methodologies behind their madess. And hell, after The Silence of the Lambs who didn’t want to join the FBI and start profiling serial killers?

So, when I first saw the promos for the Showtime series Dexter, I was immediately intrigued, and yet I never thought it was possible to actually find myself rooting for the killer. But, in this twisted TV series based on novels by Jeff Lindsay, you can’t help but to cheer Dexter Morgan on as he rids the world of scumbag filth one serial murder at a time.

Without revealing too much and ruining things for any of you who haven’t seen the show, here’s the basic premise. By day, Dexter Morgan and his sister Deborah both work for the Miami Metro Police Department. Deborah as an officer (later Homocide Detective) and Dexter as a Blood Pattern Analyst. By night, Dexter is secretly moonlighting as a serial murderer, focusing his bloodlust on remorseless criminals, murderers, rapists, and child molesters who manage to slip through the cracks and escape traditional justice–a strict code taught to him by his late adoptive father Harry.

There are a dozen reasons that I love this show. It’s well-written, perfectly cast and has a good balance of drama and dark humor. Plus, it’s one of those shows that just sort of gets you thinking. Watch a few episodes or a few seasons and you start to question the nature of good and evil, and whether those two things can be really clearly defined separately from each other. You start to think about how often our justice system manages to fail the innocents and the victims while protecting and coddling the guilty. You start wonder whether the world might actually benefit from having a few guys like Dexter Morgan around.

There would certainly be a few less Casey Anthonys and Joran Van der Sloots walking around, that’s for damn sure.

So, if you haven’t given Dexter a chance yet, maybe it’s time. I think you might just be pleasantly surprised.

Today’s 365 Project entry is dedicated to the brilliant minds that brought us Dexter. I’m counting down the days for Season 6.

365 Project – Day 185 – Not Guilty?

Like many Americans, I have been following the Casey Anthony case since it began. Crimes against children always strike a chord with me, especially now that I have a daughter of my own. I don’t have any sympathy for people who harm or neglect or treat children poorly. If you can hurt a child on purpose or without remorse, I believe you are capable of committing any number of heinous atrocities, and I have very little hope for you to change.

Sometimes in life, things happen that make you lose a little faith in humanity, and today was one of those days. I know I may be a little shortsighted with my views here, since I was neither there when the crime took place, nor in the actual courtroom when all of the evidence was presented, but I always go with my gut and, so far, my instincts have never steered me wrong. I have to say, I believe the jurors made a big mistake on this one.

If you are not guilty, there is no reason to lie or be deceitful. I think that alone should have been enough to guarantee Casey Anthony would not walk away a free woman. Unfortunately, the justice system in this country is so flawed that it allows sadistic career criminals to live out their lives eating three square meals a day and continuing their education on the taxpayers’ dimes. And apparently it is also a system that allows somone like Casey Anthony to get off scott free after brutally murdering her little girl, while all of us sit watching in awe and wondering how the hell something like that can happen.

At least when O.J. Simpson was acquitted, it made some sort of horrifying sense. I mean, the man was a celebrity, and we all know how difficult the justice system is on celebrities–just ask Paris Hilton or Lindsey Lohan or Martha Stewart or Michael Vick if you need proof of that. Perhaps that is what shocked me the most about Casey Anthony’s acquittal today–she didn’t have any celebrity status to lean on. Well, unless you count the fact that she has become rather famous since the case broke and went to trial. So, maybe we have our news media to thank for turning the case into a circus and for making this smug-faced sociopath into a star.

Okay, I have to stop now, before I really go on a tirade. Perhaps there will be more of my thoughts on this later, but for now, it’s just too raw of a nerve for me to let my thoughts continue to spill forth uncensored. Steven and I heard the verdict as we stopped at a 7-11 to gas up the van before we left Colorado, and it was a long ride home for me to think (and stew) about the outcome of the trial.

I will say this though…

While I did lose a little faith in our justice system and my fellow human beings today (namely the jurors and the Defense team on the case), I do still strongly believe that, as a whole, the purpose of our lives here on earth is to learn as much as we can and to try to be the best possible people we can be. And I also believe that everything happens for a reason.

Am I disappointed (and even downright angry) at the outcome of this case? Hell yes! But, I also think that perhaps there is a bigger lesson to be learned from today’s bogus acquittal, a lesson that may not be immediately evident, but that is there all the same. In the meantime, we can be sad for a little girl whose life was cut short far too soon, and we can make a conscious effort to hug our own children a little tighter, to appreciate our parents and our loved ones a little more, and to wake tomorrow finding ways to make the world a better place for those around us. As Ghandi said, we must be the change we want to see in the world. If you ask me, now would be a great time to start.

Today’s 365 Project entry is dedicated to all of the people who are as disappointed as I am, and who are ready to start seeing things get better. Let’s be the change.

%d bloggers like this: