Monday, January 10, 2011

Beneath the Floorboards

In his song John Wayne Gacy, Jr., Sufjan Stevens tells the true story of a serial killer who, during the period of 1972 to 1978, dressed as a clown and raped 33 teenage boys before killing them.

Stevens' response--"oh my God"--is the only thing left to say. But after all that--"he took off all their clothes for them"--he sings this:

But in my best behavior
I am really just like him
Look beneath the floorboards

for the secrets I have hid

Your temptation, vice, sin, whatever you call it: it strangles you. Is it illegal? Does it hurt others? Imagine that you were caught. Think if you made a fatal error in judgment and landed in prison.

Yesterday, five former prisoners performed a play. Their vulnerability was on display, a sign to all of us to stop before we judge. What was their crime? Was it as bad as Gacy's atrocities? Or your secret?

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