Sometimes I wonder what growing up in the kink community has done (if anything) to my ability to sense danger.
For the most part, I feel like the kink community has done positive things like teaching me to be less discriminatory and forcing me to have a more open mind. But, I wonder if it also has made it hard for me to know when someone is dangerous.
I ask because of two friends.
The first, pictured above, is Trent Benson. For many years I hung out with him on slow Sunday nights. Sometimes he came in on Saturdays too. I worked at a bar, and he was a customer who talked to me more than most, and who slowly became a friend. I trusted Trent. He was a nice guy and a single dad. He owned a water store and he seemed like a hard worker. Right up until the day the got arrested (three years after I met him), I thought he was a nice guy.
But Trent wasn’t a nice guy. In fact he raped and murdered a bunch of women in the town where we lived. And you know what is fucked up about it? When I found out he got the death penalty my first reaction was to be sad. After all, he was my friend.
Sometimes I worry that my judgement is off. Sometimes I worry that I am worse than most at picking out the bad people in a crowd.
Do you ever feel that way?
Anyway, I have this other friend. He talks often about how much he loves to hurt girls. He likes to see them cry, and he likes to wrap his hands around their necks. He’s a sadist and he’s proud of it. He talks a lot about the girls he has hurt and how much he enjoys it.
Sound like a bad guy?
Because he doesn’t to me. He’s just another Dom that I am friends with. Just another person in the BDSM community. Years of experience have conditioned me to think “harmless” of violent people who like to hurt others.
So what I am saying is; sometimes I wonder if I should ever trust my judgement about people. 98% of the time I am proud to be part of the kink community and I think we’re wonderful people who are more tolerant and open-minded than the vanilla folks. But sometimes… just sometimes… I wonder if some of the effects the community has on a person can be negative.
Maybe no one can pick a serial killer out of a crowd. Maybe the people who cringe at sadists are wrong to do so and I am right.
But as Trent’s execution nears… I wonder. I can’t help but think that maybe other people found him creepy. Maybe other people could tell, or had a sense that he was bad. And maybe my “danger” sense is dulled because I know that one can be creepy, and also healthy and well-adjusted. One can like to hurt people, but always do it with consent to someone who enjoys it. And I know that the desire to hurt people isn’t always bad.
It just makes me wonder.