A SPECIAL CLASS OF SADISTS
“The people seemed to think it was funny to throw glass bottles at me, to hit me with boards and to climb on my back . . . one, two, three, four men . . . until I collapsed. Then they’d kick me ‘til I got back up again. They treated me like I wasn’t alive . . . sometimes I wished I wasn’t.”
I had no idea who Rob was reading about. I assumed it referred to one of today’s articles on CIA torture.
“What kind of intelligence were they trying to get out of this guy?” I asked.
“Not much,” he said. “It’s me they’re after—for money. This is a letter about an abused donkey named Floyd.”
“A donkey?” I stared at him.
“Yeah, I get donkey-abuse letters all the time. It’s a wonder he wasn’t water-boarded.”
Well, that ended the blog I had in mind.
Anyway, after four articles about the CIA in one newspaper, I had nothing much to add. Except one thing that nobody mentioned—a bit of anecdotal evidence I’ve observed during angry outbursts, person-to-person. The more somebody yells, the angrier he gets. I’ve seen it often, even in myself. Anger is fueled by your own conduct, by the sound of your own furious voice--even more than by external circumstances. The angrier you behave, the angrier you get.
And so it must be with the CIA interrogators who showered cruelty on prisoners. The meaner they got, the meaner they felt. In the end the sadists were so self-inspired they became grotesquely sadistic.
Happily, the opposite is also true: the more you pet, caress, and attend to someone’s needs, the more you love him. Which shows why adopted babies are loved every bit as much as flesh-and-blood kids. It also explains why people tend to love things that aren’t human--their pets, their boats, and their guns.
Thus I understand the woman who said to me one day, “After I die, I want to come back as my husband’s car.”