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July 10, 2003 12:50 PM   Subscribe

Susan Smith needs pen pals. Remember the woman who killed her two sons by driving her car into a South Carolina lake while they were strapped into their car seats back in 1994? Well, she's 31 and looking for people who are "not judgemental" and "sincere". She's a Christian who enjoys attending church and loves "rainbows, Mickey Mouse, the beach, the mountains, and waterfalls."
posted by Irontom (58 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

 
Waterfalls indeed...
posted by mnology at 12:59 PM on July 10, 2003


31 now? I didn't realize she was so young when she killed them.
posted by graventy at 1:04 PM on July 10, 2003


Hobbies include: driving my children into the river & drowning them.
posted by jonson at 1:07 PM on July 10, 2003


Say this politely {can’t find the link} George Washington composed a list of etiquettes while a teen that he lived by. (iirc)One of them was to have compassion for the incarcerated. This is a human behind bars, what more can be commented?
posted by thomcatspike at 1:07 PM on July 10, 2003


I would think more Little Mermaid than Mickey Mouse.
posted by the fire you left me at 1:08 PM on July 10, 2003


Well, I'm glad she's putting all that unpleasantness behind her and getting on with her life. We should all have her ability to let go. Oh, you may call it "sociopathic" or "unspeakably inhuman", but I call it healing. Perhaps she'll write a book on the process.
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 1:11 PM on July 10, 2003


Hmm. Susan Smith really isn't my type. But lemme tell ya, when Mary Kay Latourneau places an ad, I'm gonna hit that.
posted by vito90 at 1:13 PM on July 10, 2003


I'm willing to give her all the compassion she gave to her own children.
posted by tommasz at 1:13 PM on July 10, 2003


thomcatspike, Dr. Laura would give ol' George what for....

Much like what's-her-name in Texas, it's nearly impossible for me to believe that anyone would drown their children for any other reason other than a severe mental disorder... maybe that's just my humanity talking.

But I supbscribe to the ideal of compassion for the incarcerated, even if I don't think that includes letting them out or off until it's darn well time.
posted by weston at 1:14 PM on July 10, 2003


Looks like the prison provides a centralized system for inmates to find pen pals, including decently-lit personal photos to attatch. The fact that inmates are desperate enough to essentially beg for correspondence depressses me. Then again, so does the fact that people kill their children.
posted by gsteff at 1:17 PM on July 10, 2003


Could she get a "special case" MeFi account. I could see it now...

You, fold_and_mutilate, really disgust me.
posted by Susan Smith at 1:22 PM
posted by Ignatius J. Reilly at 1:22 PM on July 10, 2003


I think my favorite part of the whole thing is the "send this inmate's page to a friend" option.
posted by Atom12 at 1:23 PM on July 10, 2003


Looks like you can write to any or all of our finest.... starting with Lisa. But remember.
posted by Witty at 1:23 PM on July 10, 2003


Damn it... no chicks in VA.
posted by Witty at 1:24 PM on July 10, 2003


the fire: Nice! Sick, but nice! I know I don't want to be "Part of Her World!"
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 1:27 PM on July 10, 2003


Bret seems a little frustrated with this whole process. [forums]... ok I'm done.
posted by Witty at 1:29 PM on July 10, 2003


Ahhhh... friends of Susan. Somebody stop me. I'm fascinated.
posted by Witty at 1:33 PM on July 10, 2003


Vicki writes:
To whom it may concern: I'm 28 years old, no kids, I spend most of my time watching TV and listening to the radio, but can't do it anymore. I'm in the hole for fighting, but I will go to grounds soon in October, so I'm looking for a good pen pal who will help me financially and who will kick it with me about all subjects of life.
Hmmm...violent, boring, and already asking for money. Sounds like a keeper!
posted by jpoulos at 1:39 PM on July 10, 2003


what i found also entertaining were Smoking Gun's letters people sent the FCC because Clay didnt win American Idol
posted by yeahyeahyeahwhoo at 1:50 PM on July 10, 2003


Much like what's-her-name in Texas(which one, more than one)
Stood by the holding cell and observed Darlie Routier for a time right before she was shipped to death row. Don't even get me started with what they should have done to these woman.

Not asking a lot of compassion here, just the kind you would show to a dead body on the side of the rode, by ignoring it and not poking at it, let it be. Imagine what type of mail she will reicieve more of: love, hate or wako. Yet she asked for it.
posted by thomcatspike at 1:54 PM on July 10, 2003


I think the links to that WriteAPrisoner site are far more fun than just taking the Smoking Gun's word for it. I especially like the list of inmates who haven't received any mail, and the surreal use of likely-lifted-from-Corbis stock photos on various pages, like the happy computer women on the home page.
posted by pzarquon at 1:59 PM on July 10, 2003


Irontom, I see I should have given the thread a chance to weave it's way in a some what better direction.
posted by thomcatspike at 2:02 PM on July 10, 2003


Also, how nice of them to make the links to women inmates on the list pink instead of blue.

Lisa: "I miss the warmth and affection of a man and need a special guy who will share fun times and hot nights with me." Convicted of: 2nd Degree Murder

Karen: " I have long legs that are flexible in all directions, and a lean hard body, that never quits." Convicted of: Possession & Forgery

Man. My morning's shot now...
posted by pzarquon at 2:06 PM on July 10, 2003


Not asking a lot of compassion here, just the kind you would show to a dead body on the side of the rode, by ignoring it and not poking at it, let it be.

if the body gets up and waves its arms, while shouting "Be my friend!" I reserve the right to pick up my poking stick. Or something.
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 2:10 PM on July 10, 2003


I admire your position, thomcatspike. A certain Christian text's latter sections also occasionally mention a certain notorious crank who practiced and infuriatingly recommended compassion for the incarcerated.

Could she get a "special case" MeFi account. I could see it now...

You, fold_and_mutilate, really disgust me.
posted by Susan Smith at 1:22 PM


~chuckle~

Now now. One is almost certain none of Mr. Mutilate's detractors are in the ethical or mental state of this poor lady.

~big wink~
posted by fold_and_mutilate at 2:25 PM on July 10, 2003


How convenient. She's a christian. Blah, blah, blah.

Let her rot. I've no compassion for someone who did what she did.
posted by damnitkage at 2:33 PM on July 10, 2003


Why is she allowed to use a computer? Why wasn't she executed? Why is this monster still wasting the earth's oxigen?
posted by 111 at 2:34 PM on July 10, 2003


she has redeeming social value. she can spell oxygen.
posted by quonsar at 2:48 PM on July 10, 2003


Interesting that she mentions Mickey Mouse when her husband was wearing a Mickey Mouse tie during her trial.
posted by daveg at 2:50 PM on July 10, 2003


A Valentine for Ms. Smith:



fondly,
-dhoyt
posted by dhoyt at 2:56 PM on July 10, 2003


Let her rot. I've no compassion for someone who did what she did.

Yeah, 'cuz mercy or lovingkindness isn't for people who fuck up or for bad people, only for the people who never needed it in the first place.

*takes a deep breath*

What fold_and_mutilate said. There. I said it. Even though I'd likely have posted the link to Matthew if he hadn't done it first, the damn commie.

And note that if I and Foldy agree about something, we're almost certainly right.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 2:59 PM on July 10, 2003


quonsar, you now owe me the cost of the following items:
  1. a 12 oz. can of coke;
  2. fees for cleaning of my keyboard, monitor, window and the carpet of my office, as well as my shirt; and
  3. repairing the damage to my sinus cavities and esophagus caused by reading your line at the right/wrong moment. If it turns out I have actually aspirated this stuff, I'll be sending you the bill for my lungs as well.
I will be forwarding you a bill via my attorney.
posted by Irontom at 3:01 PM on July 10, 2003


Thank you, quonsar, even though she doesn't mention oxygen. I'm still not writing you, though. Good luck with the parole board.
posted by 111 at 3:06 PM on July 10, 2003


Normally I'm not in favor of correcting people's spelling, since I make a lot of mistakes myself, but quonsar, that was just damn funny. Well done, sir!

On the other hand, I find myself in complete agreement with 111 re: this monster, so that's worrisome.

Finally, I would just like to say that this shattered my faith in PinkStainlessTail, where just a few clicks later, this redeemed it all back again.
posted by jonson at 3:24 PM on July 10, 2003


she has redeeming social value. she can spell oxygen.

I'm not so sure. She also uses my personal pet-peeve: the non-word "alot".

Dammit people, there's no such word!!!
posted by GeekAnimator at 3:27 PM on July 10, 2003


I'd hit it.
posted by sharksandwich at 3:34 PM on July 10, 2003


Suzy,

The posing-for-the-volleyball-team picture? Classy.

TTFN,

Sharksandwich
posted by sharksandwich at 3:41 PM on July 10, 2003


Mr. Catspike, your comments in this thread were not only some of the most comprehensible I've ever seen from you, but also the noblest comments I've seen from anyone in a long time.

Kudos.
posted by Kafkaesque at 3:56 PM on July 10, 2003


31?
Too old.
posted by dong_resin at 4:01 PM on July 10, 2003


but also the noblest comments I've seen from anyone in a long time.

Despite my attempt at snark earlier, I have to admit that, as I grow older, I find sites like The Smoking Gun to be less and less amusing. Human misery and the tragedies that create them are nothing to laugh at, and I'm ashamed at some of the things that I used to find hilarious. Thomcatspike really has struck the right note in this thread, I think.
posted by GeekAnimator at 4:31 PM on July 10, 2003


Jonson:Finally, I would just like to say that this shattered my faith in PinkStainlessTail...

Note to self: when in doubt, always include the sarcasm tag.

posted by PinkStainlessTail at 4:42 PM on July 10, 2003


Finally, I would just like to say that this shattered my faith in PinkStainlessTail, where just a few clicks later, this redeemed it all back again.

You call it redeemed faith, I call it healing.
posted by namespan at 6:47 PM on July 10, 2003


Death to Susan Smith. As was said above, I'm willing to show her all the compassion that she showed towards her helpless, innocent children.

Mental illness, huh? Sure, I know that many people suffer from mental illness...but a mental illness that causes a women to murder her children - sorry, no sale. Someone who is that sick should be put out of her own misery.

I think.
posted by davidmsc at 7:30 PM on July 10, 2003


Oh my.
posted by modofo at 8:02 PM on July 10, 2003


Why are so many of the women listed as bisexual?
No judgment call intended, just curious.
posted by PrinceValium at 9:04 PM on July 10, 2003


but a mental illness that causes a women to murder her children - sorry, no sale

I won't speak to Smith's problems or motives, but it does happen. Some varieties of clinical depression can be severe enough to drop the victim into really irrational headspaces such that killing your children is a mercy to them to keep them from ever growing up and suffering like you are now.

In any case, I fail to see what purpose her death would serve, or what her imprisonment being any more miserable than it has to for that matter.

If she finds a little peace in her cell and herself, or, horror of horrors, a bit of companionship somehow, it's not going to pick your pocket or break your leg or make her kids any more dead.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 9:26 PM on July 10, 2003


Why are so many of the women listed as bisexual?

Doubles their chances of finding a mate. When your chances are as low as some of these ladies', you take any help you can get.
posted by kindall at 11:24 PM on July 10, 2003


I agree with thomcatspike and foldy. What Kafkaesque said.
posted by plep at 6:12 AM on July 11, 2003


I was just startled to discover Smith and I share a birthday. I could have lived the rest of my life without knowing that disturbing little tidbit.
posted by JamieStar at 6:24 AM on July 11, 2003


but a mental illness that causes a women to murder her children - sorry, no sale

Yeah, because the further people go from behavourial norms the more likely they are to come round to the other side of the universe and move back into rationality - or something.
posted by biffa at 6:59 AM on July 11, 2003


Yeah, because the further people go from behavourial norms the more likely they are to come round to the other side of the universe and move back into rationality - or something.

Either that or: I'd rather just think of her as a monster than face that things are more complex than my worldview will allow.
posted by jpoulos at 7:13 AM on July 11, 2003


Either that or: I'd rather just think of her as a monster than face that things are more complex than my worldview will allow.

I think the part that makes her seem kind of monstrous is that she did that and now she has a smiling picture up with a little blurb about liking rainbows, as if that's all in the past now, and can't we just let it be? I can't imagine ever being so perky after having committed such a horrific crime.

I don't feel any anger or disgust toward her, but I do find it kind of weird and sad that she seems to have pretty much gotten over it. Maybe being christian she believes her kids are up in heaven with god so it's all okay after all.

I dunno, yeah, better that there's less pain rather than more pain, no skin off my nose if she finds a way to forgive herself and move on, such as moving on is when you're incarcerated, but it's hard to relate to. I don't feel particular compassion for her, compassion (with-feeling) implying some level of empathy, but I don't feel animosity toward her either. It just seems extremely sad.
posted by mdn at 9:15 AM on July 11, 2003


mdn, what do you want her to say? "Write to me, I'm writhing in daily agony, convinced I'm going to hell for murdering my children. Won't someone help me kill myself?" I mean, she IS trying to move past it. She admits in the letter that she did something awful. I'm SURE she thinks about it all day long, every single day, ESPECIALLY if she's the Christian she says she is.

I would NEVER write anyone in prison, but I'm glad to see she's trying to move on. I pity her and hope she finds some rest in her soul. She's paying the price our society says she should, she's payiong the price in her mind, and she's trying to make the best of it. What is so awful about that?
posted by aacheson at 9:51 AM on July 11, 2003


I don't insist that anyone have sympathy for Smith, but I think asserting that mental illness can't drive someone to murder their children smacks of denial.
posted by jpoulos at 10:51 AM on July 11, 2003


as a sidenote, Richard Price used the Susan Smith story as the premise of his excellent novel, Freedomland
posted by matteo at 4:45 PM on July 11, 2003


mdn, what do you want her to say?

I don't "want" her to say anything in particular - as I said, I'm merely unable to relate to her; I've long accepted that I can't relate to everyone on earth...

"Write to me, I'm writhing in daily agony, convinced I'm going to hell for murdering my children. Won't someone help me kill myself?"

that would be more comprehensible to me. So would not putting up a "personal" (which would not preclude her from attempting to contact people, but just from a generalized, light-hearted howdy, y'all approach).

I mean, she IS trying to move past it.

yeah, I guess this is the fundamental issue. To me, it seems like there are some mistakes you try to move past, and some mistakes you stare in the face for the rest of your life. I don't mean you have to just sit there and suffer, but you somehow devote your life to addressing the mistake. Reminds me a bit of the Strom Thurmond thing: to me, running on a pro-lynching platform was an egregious enough mistake that the rest of his life should have been openly addressing that issue, trying to make a positive difference, etc.

Anyway, her claims to affection for rainbows and mickey mouse give some indication of her level of thoughtfulness and contemplation, so it's not shocking she's taken a "move on" attitude. I don't have a problem with that. I am glad I am not her, though, even if she hadn't killed her children.
posted by mdn at 5:47 PM on July 11, 2003


here's the latest.
posted by konolia at 8:05 PM on July 11, 2003


I'm always so shocked at the compassion for prisoners subject. I find it to be the number one most hypocritical subject by Christians. Its not like a peripheral issue in Christian teachings, I mean Jesus spells it out pretty plainly in the gospels that you are required to have compassion for prisoners, yet so many people, and it seems particularly prevalent in the Christian American world, want to just condemn them all to shackles and brick breaking. So sad really, oh the hypocrisy!

For example: Mathew 25: 41-46 - 41 Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into the eternal fire which is prepared for the devil and his angels:
42 for I was hungry, and ye did not give me to eat; I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink;
43 I was a stranger, and ye took me not in; naked, and ye clothed me not; sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not.
44 Then shall they also answer, saying, Lord, when saw we thee hungry, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee?
45 Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not unto one of these least, ye did it not unto me.
46 And these shall go away into eternal punishment: but the righteous into eternal life
.


WWJD indeed.
posted by Pollomacho at 8:11 AM on July 14, 2003


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