Why the mayor and council had to die
I know my killing the mayor and council was wrong.
And I know Iíll have to die for killing the cityís receptionist, too.
But I just couldnít take the tickets, taxes and abuse any more.
The more tickets and taxes went up, the angrier I got.
When this all started, I tried to be reasonable. I knew that prices in the city had to go up and the city officials needed to raise taxes and collect on tickets to cover costs.
Iím working man. I believe in laws. I even voted for Ronald Reagan twice.
So when I got a ticket for overtime at the parking meter, I paid it like all good citizens should.
Back then, I even liked the cityís receptionist, her sweet and calming voice good to hear when I called up city hall. I liked talking to her then even when I knew she couldnít deal with my problem and I would have to repeat everything I said to someone else who could.
Back then, I actually believed the mayor when he said he wanted to help me, but needed fees, fines and taxes to cover the cityís costs.
It took me a while to realize that the city ticketed people for everything.
If you dropped a gum wrapper on the street, you got a ticket. If you parked across your own drive way, you got a ticket. If you didnít cut your lawn or watered on the wrong day or took the trash out an hour early, you got tickets.
And if you didnít pay these tickets on time, the city increased the fines.
I began to notice that people like me, who could no longer afford the increasing taxes and costs of tickets, were moving out of town, and that developers were moving in to redevelop old homes like ours for rich people to live in.
Concerned, I called city hall to find out what was going on, and got the same utterly reasonable receptionist who made me sound like a paranoid fool by making me detail precisely what it is I expected the city to do before she passed me on to someone else who couldnít help me either.
I broke my phone, I slammed it down so hard.
But I forced myself to calm down, saying anger wonít save my home.
I figured if I couldnít reach public officials by phone, I would go to one of their meetings and express my concerns there.
I said sure itís nice to have rich people moving into town who can afford to pay higher taxes, but the city shouldnít drive us working people out to make room the rich.
I felt confident that my arguments would move city officials enough for them to ease up on the tickets and the taxes a little.
At least, I didnít have to hear that utterly reasonable receptionist who made me feel as if I was talking into an empty bottle, my voice echoing back at me pointlessly.
But almost immediately, I wanted the receptionist back.
She, at least, pretended to care.
This crew treated me like crap, as if I didnít matter when they had more important things (and people) to deal with.
They told me that if I didnít pay the increasing tickets and taxes, they would put a lean on my property and take it from me. They didnít need to say the city would sell my house to some rich developer who had given the mayor a hefty campaign contribution to redevelop houses like mine.
When I got angry, the mayor ordered the police to remove me.
Again, I forced myself to calm down.
I needed to save my house not get angry.
So I figured if local officials wonít help me, Iíll go to the state.
So I call my state assemblyman, confident that I wonít get some soft spoken clone answering the telephone.
But I got the same receptionist as before.
She was secretary to the assemblyman because the assemblyman was also the mayor, and there wasnít any point calling the senator since he was the mayorís brother in law. In fact, the developer who wanted to steal my house was the mayorís cousin.
The receptionist insisted on asking me the same questions she had asked me before as if she had never heard my answers prior to this.
Thatís when I flipped out.
Yes, I admit I shot the mayor and half the city council.
I figured I was going to lose my home anyway, but I might save someone else from going through the same thing.
Yes, I also shot the receptionist, and yes, it felt good doing it, too.