Wednesday, April 22, 2015

An Excuse to Kill Somebody

(First Fiction at CofA by Kay Ebeling)

After I assaulted Cardinal Mahony the second time on an L.A. side street a judge agreed to let me go to a halfway house for wayward women in order to avoid prison and a criminal record. Because I am a pedophile priest victim there were mitigating circumstances. It was in that East Hollywood rooming house that I had my moment of recognition.  

If I commit a good enough felony, I'll get subsidized housing.

According to women at the shelter, upon release from prison, the state of California gives you a Section 8 rental certificate and an SSI check, the ex-cons get almost everything paid for by the government, while here I am trying to live on a six hundred a month social security check.

"A convicted felon gets subsidized housing?" I repeated at one of our coffee sessions.

"Yeah, low rent, nine hundred something a month SSI,” said Dot the manager of the house that year.  “They have to give it to ‘em 'cause who's going to hire 'em? It's supposed to keep 'em from robbing again. (Snort)" 

“Look at this,” said Shelly, who had been to college.  She turned her tablet to me so I could read a headline about the recent release of The Pillow Case Rapist.

“He's going to live in a Martha Stewart Mansion,”  Shelly said with a dour look.

We all perked up and several repeated, “Martha Stewart Mansions?”

Shelly nodded. “Back in the 1990s Stewart bought up a huge piece of property in an area north of here, they call it Lake Los Angeles which is a joke, it's the Mojave Desert.  Right smack dab there in the middle of nowhere she carved out side streets and built these three and four story suburban homes, mansions, well, McMansions all of them.”

Dot joined in: “Nobody would buy them so now there's about a hundred of them, empty houses, some really nice, big two story four-five bedroom homes sitting there empty.”

Soon several women joined in:  

“They gotta have somebody live in ‘em or they get all run down, so they give the convicts Section 8 and they rent the houses.”  "McMansions, ha ha." Another trying to get my attention said, “Like she said, while we live in shelters," but I had gone into a kind of trance.

I have a perfect excuse to kill somebody, with my history.  


I wouldn't be in this mess, where the only way out is to commit a felony, if it weren't for that damn Jesuit Governor Jerry Brown. 

My sister and I were molested by a Catholic priest when we were little girls in the 1950s and it messed us both up so much that when the opportunity to file lawsuits against the Catholic Church came up in 2002, when California opened up a one-year window in the statute of limitations, neither me or my sister was functioning well enough to get to a lawyer.  Trish was out of it, on the tail end of losing her mind in San Francisco, and I was in L.A. spending a lot of times in bars on Santa Monica Boulevard near La Cienega, then near Western, then near Hobart. 

So I didn't hear about the open window for long term lawsuits until there were only a few days left to file. 

I was one of the people who filed just a few days too late and missed the deadline.  

As a result I got to meet a bunch of people who had the same experience as me, being raped by a priest when we were little kids.  They settled their lawsuits and became millionaires, and I got nothing. 

So I assaulted Cardinal Mahony on the street. 

There were more than six hundred of us in L.A.  Beginning in 2002 we went to support groups, cajoled each other, demonstrated outside of the Cathedral in harmony.  Then in 2007 their lawsuits paid out and my new friends got settlements, but I didn't. 

Don't worry, said the lawyers, there will be another window, and sure enough, in 2014 both houses of the State Legislature passed a bill to open another window for lawsuits.  Then it went to the Governor, he sat on it for days, I was all ready to refile my lawsuit and finally get out of poverty,

And that damn Jesuit governor refused to sign the bill.  Both houses of the legislature passed it and that damn Jesuit governor refused to sign it.  He sent out a press release saying he let the bill die for the sake of justice, that statutes of limitations are written for a reason blah-blah-blah. 

So in 2014 I assaulted Cardinal Mahony on the street the second time. 

And thanks to a benevolent judge, I landed in that shelter where I learned my Social Security pension, money I have to live on until the day I die, is so small it would not pay rent in a flea-bag hotel. 

How could everybody not see how unfair it is to people like me, that the California plaintiffs get to collect about a million dollars each from the church after having the same exact experience as me, but  I don't get a settlement, just because I got to a lawyer a few hours too late. 

So now here I am in my sixties and destitute and it's the Catholic Church's fault, because I lost every job I had due to my sexual dysfunction caused by that pedophile priest when I was a kid, so of course now I have no pension to speak of. My life is a mess today because the Catholic Church enabled pedophiles.  And everyone in power seems to be in collusion with them, right up to that damn Jesuit governor who refused to sign the bill and let me file my lawsuit. 

So I moved from the shelter in East Hollywood to a similar place out in Lancaster, just a short drive from the Martha Stewart Mansions, and set about my plan.

It was in that Mojave rooming house that I met Rudy, a skinny grumpy old man in a wheelchair.  He was expounding in the community kitchen where we all gathered for coffee:

“I see in the news, now we all got to not insult the Muslims," said the bony little man, who resembled Mason Verger in many ways. "You can't besmirch a Muslim but that damn Obama is forcing Catholic businesses to pay for abortions.” 

“What the heck is a Catholic business?” The words popped out of me before I could stop them. 

Rudy’s face mangled into a snarl.  “No Catholic business should have to provide un-Catholic things to their employees like birth control pills.”

I said, “Oh, so you support Sharia law as long as it's done by Catholics?”  

Rudy got really mad and wheeled out in his electric chair sputtering a string of swear words at me that shocked the other ladies, but just made me laugh. 

"Who is he?" I asked, and found out he was in charge of Catechism classes, at the church across the street.  . .

“Where?” I asked.

“At St. What's her name's, the Catholic Church over there.”

I was incredulous. “They put that cussing spitting hostile old man in charge of Catholic education for kids?” I asked, and the ladies around the table nodded.  

That's when I confirmed my decision, the next step in my plan to commit a felony and get a certificate for subsidized housing. I said it then for the first time to myself, although I probably was thinking it when I took the apartment.  "I'm going to kill the priest at the Catholic Church up the street." 

It would get the issue of pedophile priests back into the news, I justified to myself, and I’d get subsidized housing for the rest of my life.  

Or maybe I’ll just kill Rudy.   

(THIS IS FICTION in case there are any Vatican spies reading my keystrokes.)

(Cartoon courtesty of Political Carnival)

Fiction by Kay Ebeling

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