At about the same time I finished yesterday's post on this blog FBI agents entered the bunker built and occupied by Jimmy Lee Dykes in Midland City, Alabama. Things did not turn out well for Brother Dykes. He is dead now. The good news, however, is that his hostage, identified in press reports simply as "Ethan" escaped and was physically unharmed.
Authorities rushed him to a hospital in nearby Dothan where he was examined and pronounced fit, although one can only imagine the number of hours he'll spend in therapy over the next few years. It has been reported by several sources that the child suffers from Asperger's Syndrome and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. Sitting in what is being described as a six foot by eight foot hole in the ground for nearly a week with a babbling lunatic probably didn't help either condition. Ethan turns six tomorrow. Before he was taken hostage he saw his school bus driver, Charles Poland shot four times and left dead as fellow students scrambled to escape.
Jimmy Lee Dykes is being described by neighbors as an angry loner who was prone to roaming his property late at night, patrolling for trespassers. A female neighbor claims a while back he beat her dog to death with a lead pipe. NBC News has reported that Dykes was a "decorated" veteran who served in the navy during the Vietnam War. Well there is decorated and then there is decorated. So far the only awards Mr. Dykes has been confirmed to received is the Vietnam Service Medal. It was awarded to everyone who served in that theater for at least 30 continuous days, or 60 days total. He also was presented with the Good Conduct Medal. It is awarded to those individuals who don't severely fuck up during their enlistment, or at least don't get caught when they do.
NBC is also reporting he was popped in Florida in 1995 for improper exhibition of a weapon. Given the state it is hard to figure out what he had to do to get himself arrested. The misdemeanor charges were dismissed probably because everyone in Florida has exhibited a weapon at some point and it is all quite proper down there. He was also charged with possession of marijuana in 2000.
Yes, ultimately he was just another twisted malcontent lost in a sea of like souls. Odds are every weapon he owned was bought legally. That despite the fact Dykes' dementia and paranoia had grown over the years to the point he told acquaintances he felt the government was rigging the races at a Florida dog track. He believed that if a government approved animal wasn't winning the race the leader was somehow shocked to throw it off its pace.
Apparently things began to go south with the negotiations early Monday. The FBI had, according to sources quoted by USA Today, been able to wiggle some sort of surveillance device into the bunker so they could see what was going on. Dykes became increasingly agitated yesterday afternoon and finally picked up a weapon. That was when agents decided to pull the plug on the drama and stormed into the bunker. It is unclear at this time whether they put a cap in his ass, or he killed himself.
Meanwhile NBC is reporting that the kids of the nation are tired of putting up with all this mayhem. According to an online article by M. Alex Johnson, since January first of this year there have been 48 separate incidences of students bringing loaded weapons to school with them. Johnson writes that last Thursday alone students in Atlanta, Augusta, Kansas, Raleigh, Winston-Salem, and--of course--Chicago were all detained for toting guns in their book bags, or on their persons. In Atlanta one student was wounded as was one in Taft, California on the tenth of this month. In the latest incident a Virginia second grader was arrested after he threatened a class mate on a bus taking them both to school. An unspecified firearm was found in his backpack when he climbed off the bus at the campus.
The National Rifle Association has yet to step in on the behalf of any of these kids, although given their attitude regarding gun control that is probably right around the corner. After all, children have constitutional rights too. No doubt it will be just a matter of moments before a state legislator somewhere points out that seven year olds should be able to form their own militias to fight against government tyranny. Not to mention math and science exams.
This is all so bitterly tiresome. We are possessed by a deadly fetish. It controls our thoughts, words, and deeds. Now it is infecting our children.
I fear we are lost. There is simply no other way to describe it.