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The Reality Of Evil

“I’m the Devil and I’m here to do the Devil’s business.”  Tex Watson.Evil photo

I am sure the recent mass murders in Sutherland Springs church has disturbed you to some extent. Personally I feel a great deal of sadness. The killer came with the intent of killing everybody in the building. Twenty six precious lives perished at the hands of one deranged and evil man, named Devin Patrick Kelley. None were spared his venom, not the young children nor the elderly. His actions will be rewarded by making his name infamous. Without a doubt it is a dark day for our country. 

Some people find it expedient to blame the man’s mental state. As a person who suffers from mental illness and an advocate for the mentally ill I feel compelled to put up a defense against this argument. First of all to simply pawn it off on mental illness ends all debate on the matter. Two serious things that need to be considered are the availability of weapons and the violence inherent to the United States. I will only mention those two things in passing. Other countries have mental health problems without these mass shootings.  My real defense is this man was just plain evil.

Just like not every person who serves in the United States military, as Devin Kelley did, becomes a heinous killer, the same goes with those who are mentally ill. What happened in this instance was an anomaly. Despite our ever growing culture of violence events such as these are infrequent. The mentally ill are present in their masses and go unnoticed except when bad things happen. Devin Kelly didn’t kill because he was mentally ill, rather his psychological problems were one aspect of his personality.

In life we always have choices. Every day we make small choices. Some carry little consequences while others have great impact. Though chance and circumstance plays their part, so much of what we become is a product of our own creation. In particular is what we do with what goes on inside of our mind. Is the cup half full? Is the cup half empty? Or am I just glad that I got some water to quench my thirst?

We all live in different realities. No two people look at life in the same way. As a pacifist I value the sanctity of human life to the point that I would not harm another human being. That reality is enforced by choices that I make. The people that I associate myself with and the things that I do, create who I am.

In New York City, which is but a twenty minute train ride from where I live there was another mass killing. In that case the man was called a ‘terrorist’. According to the news reports the man was ‘radicalized’. In this case the ‘terrorist’ made conscious choices to learn about hostile and violent groups and found his own identity in them.

We know that Devin Kelley had a violent past. He beat both his wife and his stepchild to the point that it was determined his intent was either to kill or to do serious harm. This is not the norm for people with psychiatric problems. I believe the majority of us are very sensitive people who don’t wish to harm anybody. In fact the person that we are the most threat to is our ourselves.

Don’t allow the politicians and pundits to ram down your throat that this killing was about ‘mental illness’, that is a lie and the statistics are there to prove it. What this is about is an evil man, with an evil mind, acting out on his wickedness.

Let’s be brutally honest and truthful. We all have had dark musings in our brain from time to time about doing something to hurt others. Whether it is some extracted plot of revenge or simply wanting to punish the car that cut you off on the freeway, we’ve all been there. What we did was come to our senses and employ restraint.

Devil Kelley was simply put an evil man, I can tell you that by what he did. Accept the reality of evil.

The Reality Of Evil

John Kaniecki

John Kaniecki is a full-time caregiver for his wife Sylvia. He is a published writer and works with the Church of Christ. John has lived with bipolar for over thirty years and has been hospitalized nine times, three of which were committed. John has chronicled his life story in his memoirs "More Than The Madness". Also of note is John's book of poetry "Murmurings Of A Mad Man" which are poems written about being committed in Graystone Psychiatric Hospital. John believes in the power of words to change the world for the better. His website can be seen here. His books can be seen on Amazon. You can visit his personal blog "Turn A Page Or Two" here.

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APA Reference
Kaniecki, J. (2017). The Reality Of Evil. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 17, 2018, from


Last updated: 8 Nov 2017
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 8 Nov 2017
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