Because you choose to…..

Scream 3 marked the end of the Scream series, at least till this year when they made part 4. The movie, which was meant to discuss horror trilogies, was reportedly a troubled production and met with a negative reception. While not as good as the first two, it had its moments, especially the dialogue between Sidney (the protagonist) and the killer during the reveal. The (unmasked) killer has her cornered and tells her that he plans to kill her and everyone else present and then frame her for the murders, setting himself up as the sole survivor for the fame that would follow. The exchange is then as follows:

Killer: You’re going to pay for the life you stole from me. For the mother, and the family and the stardom, and everything you had that should have been mine and…….
: God why don’t you stop your whining and get on with it! I’ve heard this shit before!
: Stop!
: Do you know why you kill people….? Do you?
: I don’t want to hear it!
: You kill people because you choose to. There is no one else to blame!
: Damn it! Fucking damn it!
: Why don’t you take some fucking responsibility?

Watching the movie again, this exchange brought to mind Osama Bin Laden’s death, and the news of his private life that emerged. If his death was a Hiroshima, the Nagasaki that followed was surely the un-Islamic manner in which he had been living. For starters Mr. Death-to-America drank copious amounts of Coke and Pepsi, ordering both by the crate. Then it turned out the wall of his house had a line of marijuana growing alongside it. And to top it all off, he was found to have a stash of porn. Yessiree, while plotting to establish a Golden Age based on a book that bans intoxication and lewdness, Mr. Keeper of the Faith was getting stoned and dating Rosie Palm and her five sisters.

The why of the man has always been confounding. People at one point described Islamic terrorists as desperate people, who were driven to violence due to their poverty or otherwise difficult circumstances. Somehow, poverty made them easier to brainwash and turn into shooters and suicide bombers than richer people, who could only be brainwashed to drink Coke or Pepsi. OBL defied this explanation by virtue of his fantastically privileged upbringing. Lack of education similarly failed to explain him, considering the man had the opportunities to attend the best schools and colleges in his country. The only explanation left was the one put forth by atheists like Bill Maher and Richard Dawkins – religion in and of itself drives people nuts and makes them do stuff like this. But now we find out he didn’t quite read the fine print on intoxicants and sexual mores, though he was pretty sure where the Good Book stood on non-believers.

The only explanation left is what Sidney said. He killed innocent people simply because he chose to. Not out of desperation, not for revenge, not for the thousand reasons he or the media put forward. The next time there’s an attack and the perpetrator leaves a tape or a message talking about his suffering brothers or the imperialism of the West/India/Israel, I really hope somebody says, as Sidney Prescott did “I’ve heard this shit before. Will you quit your whining?”

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