Charles Manson’s Race War, Explained

Charles Manson being escorted to court for a preliminary hearing on Dec. 3, 1969, in Los Angeles. (John Malmin/Getty Images)
Charles Manson being escorted to court for a preliminary hearing on Dec. 3, 1969, in Los Angeles. (John Malmin/Getty Images)

On Sunday, Nov. 19, Charles Manson, the man who inspired a mass killing and is often referred to as “Original Recipe Richard Spencer,” was called home to be spit-roasted in the eternal damnation of hellfire after a fruitful life filled with hate, bloodshed and forehead-swastika-carving.


Who was Charles Manson?

Until Sunday, he was the evilest man alive (apologies to Donald J. Trump) and one of the original members of #BeardGang.

What did he do?

In the late ’60s, Manson inspired a brutal series of nine murders, including that of Sharon Tate, an actress who was eight-and-a-half months pregnant.

Why, though?

Racism and sex. And drugs. And a failed record deal. But mostly racism.

Manson wanted to start a race war that would finally make white people see how dangerous black people were. The handsome, charismatic man gained a cult following among a gullible group of followers he convinced that blacks were going to start a violent uprising. He convinced his believers that the protests following the death of Martin Luther King Jr. were the beginning of a black movement and that the only way whites could remain in power was by taking control through a race war.


Seems legit. So what did they do?

Manson combined a message only he understood from the Beatles’ song “Helter Skelter” and the Bible to plan his race war. The first part of the plan was simple. First, he and his followers were going to have group sex. Then they were going to do drugs and record an album. Then they would do more drugs and have more sex, and then they were going to commit a series of murders. Then people would listen to the album and understand how gangsta he was. It was the original “street cred” plan.


After shooting a man named Bernard Crowe, whom Manson believed to be a member of the Black Panthers, Manson and his followers held Gary Hinman hostage for two days before killing him and writing “Political Piggy” on the wall in Hinman’s blood. They then drew a panther paw on the wall in blood to falsely symbolize that the Black Panthers were responsible.

The next part of the plan was to target Terry Melcher, a music executive who wouldn’t sign Manson to a record deal. Unbeknownst to Manson’s followers, the music executive had moved out of his house, and it was now owned by Roman Polanski, a director who would later become famous for his movies ... and child molestation. Since Manson and his members were already at the house, and not wanting to waste gas money, the Manson Family cult members decided to murder Polanski’s pregnant wife, actress Sharon Tate, along with four others who were in the home.


After a night of sex, drugs and rock and roll, the Manson Family found Leno and Rosemary LaBianca and killed them, too. Then the Manson followers wrote “Death to pigs” and “Rise” in their victims’ blood, again to falsely point the finger at militant blacks.


Members of the cult later murdered a number of other people and even attempted to assassinate President Gerald Ford.

During the murder trials, Manson shaved his head because, he said, “I am the devil, and the devil has always had a bald head.” He then later carved an “x” in his forehead, prompting the members of his cult to show up at court the next day with their own forehead X’s. Manson, never to be outdone, later changed the “x” to a swastika.


Manson was sentenced to die, but after the death penalty was eliminated in California, he and the members of the Manson Family had their sentences commuted to life in prison.

How was his music?

I won’t lie. It was kinda fire. If SZA or Solange made a funky remake of “Look at Your Game Girl,” I might download it.


Don’t you think that’s a little inappropriate?

I’m not promoting his music. I’m just saying ... plus, he’s dead, bruh.

Well, damn, I’m glad that won’t happen again.

Yeah. There’s no way a charismatic young man could inspire that kind of hate. After all, it’s 2017. White people aren’t stupid enough to believe that the fact that black people are simply fighting for their rights actually makes them a dangerous group of revolutionaries bent on committing violence against whites. No one could convince Caucasians to commit an act of racial hatred and terror that would result in the death of an innocent white woman.


Nah, that would never happen.

Thoughts and prayers, Mr. Manson. Gone not soon enough.



“I used to be a okay painter, before, well, you know, that other stuff.”—Adolph Hitler