Halloween conjures images of night and darkness. Bats and black cats, witches, vampires, zombies, and other creatures of the night are offered up to frighten us during the Halloween season. But the most frightening or most puzzling mysteries of the darkness are the ones that we can read about everyday in the newspaper. Here are three that I read about today:
"She's afraid of the dark and always has been," said Latice Sutton, the mother of Mitrice Richardson. Mitrice Richardson was arrested on the night of September 16 after she refused to pay a bill at an upscale restaurant in Malibu, California. Witnesses at the restaurant said the petite 24 year old black woman had begun acting in a rather odd fashion. Police were called. They admininstered a sobriety test and determined that she was not drunk. After finding marijuana in her car they arrested her and took her to a nearby sheriff substation and impounded her car. Latice was processed at the station and eventually released. Her mother was going to pick her up later that morning, however for some reason Mitrice decided to leave on her own on foot saying that she was going to meet friends. She is a doctorate student in Clinical Psychology who had recently graduated with a 4.0 average. She was a past beauty pageant contestant who has a good job and who is active in her community. Why she was behaving so strangely that evening is indeed a mystery. But what happened after she left the police station at about 1 AM the morning of September 17 is perhaps a bigger mystery. She disappeared and has yet to be heard from. There have been a few reported but unconfirmed sightings. What was going with Mitrice that night? And why would a young woman who was afraid of the dark take off by herself in the darkness of the early morning in a place far from her home. Where is Mitrice?
A beautiful, talented violin player, Amy Farris was a session musician who had played with many great artists and was highly regarded in the music industry. She had come to Los Angeles from Austin, Texas to further pursue her music dreams. Amy was part of a new musical group, Dave Alvin and the Guilty Women, and the future was looking promising. Then on Tuesday September 29 she was found dead in her home. It was most probably suicide, but investigations are underway to confirm this. I do not know anything about Amy Farris other than what the papers stated, but her story is just another of many other talented people who end their lives. Year after year we have read of people who seem like they should have everything to live for but end their lives. What darkness overcomes these lives to make them end them? It is a darkness I do not understand.
Little Andrew Garcia, 4 months old, was just innocently being fed when he became just another victim of Los Angeles area gang insanity. It was in the darkness at about 1 AM Sunday morning September 27 in Van Nuys. He was in the backseat of a car being fed by a woman, not his mother, who was also shot and sent to the hospital. Andrew however was shot in the head and died. Another man was also shot but he was apparently not to seriously wounded. The police did not specifically attribute the incident to "gang violence", but all indications were that everyone involved had gang affiliations. I personally don't understand this gangster mentality or why there is not more pressure to eliminate gangs. Of course we have wonderful organizations like the ACLU to protect the rights of gangbangers and many of the gangs have the money for top notch legal defense. The innocent pay the price for the freedom of gangs to exist. Gang culture is a darkness that casts on ominously evil shadow over the future of our nation.
There are many awful things that happen under the cover of night. And the evil darkside of the human soul can cast its shadow no matter what the time of day. This is why each of us who despise the evil dark need to shine our lights for good.