Horin: Want to get what?
Manson: Some pictures of that hand.
Horin: Okay, we can take pictures of your hand.
Manson: And some pictures of this hand.
Manson: And then I would like to get pictures of both of those hands sent to me when you get around to it.
Horin: I will. I’ll send you pictures of your hands.
Horin: Now give us one of your looks. Just smile.
Manson: How are you today?
Horin: Good, how are you?
Manson: Did Vinny write out questions?
Horin: You’ve been in prison for 22 years, what name can you give to that inner whisper inside? What keeps you going for so many years?
Manson: Peace. Contentment. Harmony.
Manson: You want some new words Fuck. Uh, sex. Satisfaction. Peace, harmony, music, love, now, God. They’re just words communicate feeling; to have feeling, to transfer feeling with motion. That’s the reason I asked to be unhandcuffed. So you could see the motion. Because I say more in motion then I do—
Horin: Listen, listen Charlie. We’ve known each other for some time and you know that I’m very secluded. I don’t understand these things. Imagine that I don’t do these, explain the energy, the music, what do you mean by it?
Manson: A long time ago, I started playing music.
Horin: Yeah, but you don’t play and you still— What is that inner beauty inside of you called— that makes you, you. That special thing everyone makes of you, writes of you?
Manson: Life and energy, man.
Horin: Can you tell me what you mean by that?
Manson: A long time ago, I started playing music. I still play it in my mind. They took my music away, but they didn’t take my soul away. They haven’t taken my soul, you can’t take my soul.
Horin: What is it about you that makes you such an unbroken spirit?
Manson: All spirits are the same. You can’t break the spirit.
Horin: Yeah, but you have a special spirit, why?
Manson: I don’t think. I quit thinking a long time ago.
Horin: You did?
Manson: If you think, you get confused by things. I got nothing to think about— I know about.
Horin: What do you know about—
Manson: Everything and nothing. Everything. All. Zero.
Horin: I don’t know anything, describe something.
Horin: Why is it that you became such a legend?
Manson: I’m a perfect servant. I serve you perfect and then you say I’m wrong.
Horin: I don’t say you’re wrong. Who does, Charlie?
Manson: The parole board keeps telling me that I’m wrong, because I can’t fix their world for them. They keep wanting me to fix their world in handcuffs. And then they say I’m wrong because—
Horin: Whose world do they want you to fix?
Manson: The mind. The mind. The world’s in the mind, you know. The world’s in the childrens’ minds. The children grow up and the children get old. I stay in prison watching the children grow up in the windows. And I watch the moon and the sun and the moon and the sun and the moon and the sun. If you don’t understand it—
Horin: Listen, listen, talking about children. I read a book about you by Nuell Emmons, in which he describes your childhood as a very painful ordeal. Do you think you became a victim of that childhood?
Manson: Emmons wrote a book about Emmons, it didn’t have anything to do with me.
Horin: You tell me about your life, and about your childhood. Do you view your life, or do you view yourself as a victim of that childhood?
Manson: I’ll explain it to you again: Emmons wrote a book about Emmons and he put “Manson” on it. And then the next book, he wrote about Manson and put “Emmons” on it. In other words he wrote his book first, and said it was my book. And then he took what I said and put it in his book and said it was his book. That way he milked you people for two books— he cheated you out of two books. I mean, Emmons is a good; he’s a crook, he’s a good crook. He made a lot of money.
Horin: Let me ask you the question again: Was he right in how he described your childhood?
Manson: He was right in parts; little bits and pieces. He gathered the information from different places, but that wasn’t difficult to do.
Horin: If not for that tragic childhood, do you think your life might have been a different story all together?
Manson: Nah, how would that be any different?
Horin: You might not have ended up in juvenile detention.
Manson: I might have ended up in somebody else. I might have been Babe Ruth. I mean how you gonna say “may?” That’s like some stupid doctor come by and say, “Do you wish they would have killed you rather than put you in a cell?” I said, “What makes a cell bad to you; you can’t stand yourself? So you don’t like the cell. I don’t mind the cell, my best friend’s in there. I like the cell. The cell is okay, I got peace in there. I can take my own time and do what I want.” He says, “Well you’re crazy, you like the cell.”
Horin: What do you do in your cell?
Manson: I play with myself and I do what I feel like I want to do.
Horin: How do you feel Charlie, about going up for parole?
Manson: I don’t know whether I want to go up for parole. I don’t see anything out there I want to parole out there to. Why would I want to go out there? What do they have out there that I want? Every time I go out there; they get me in trouble and say it’s all my fault. And then they make me into being what they need me to be. I’m tired of being something someone else wants me to be.
Horin: What are you then? Who is the real Charles Manson?
Manson: That’s, that’s a beautiful question. Who is Charles Manson? He’s everybody and nobody.
Horin: Since no one knows you, what can you say to people who want to know you? Tell me about your special characteristics?
Manson: [Stands up] In Malaysia; if you took this to Malaysia. [Makes faces] Take that to Malaysia and see if they got me in stone over there. See if my face is on the walls. See how many different people, how many elephants I am. How many tigers.
Horin: I’m asking about you, rather than others can say about you.
Manson: You, you is a word.
Horin: Tell me things about you, that are special to you.
Manson: I don’t live in that little You trip you guys are in, man. I been in jail since I’ve been 10 years old.
Manson: Why? Because.
Horin: Do you feel an injustice has been done to you?
Manson: What they hell is that: justice?
Horin: Listen: Do you feel as if your life is a series of injustices?
Manson: Series of injustices?
Horin: Do you think an injustice was done to you?
Manson: I think justice is a word that people use but they don’t have much meaning in the word. They use it when it does them good— when it does something for them they use it. But when it does something for me, it turns around the other way. In other words, you got right until it comes to something someone else wants, then they take your rights. And when they take your rights, then they tell you to appeal it.
Horin: Do you feel as if your rights were taken from you?
Manson: Why certainly my rights were taken.
Horin: Do you believe this was one big ordeal of an injustice called “How we crucify Manson?”
Manson: Justice is a two-edged thing. How you gonna say justice one way and not justice the other way?. Let me say this to you: they got a Hindu word that they use in Hinduism. Karma. Will, the balance of will and God. Is it an individual thing, or is it a family thing, or a collective thing, or does it get off into the world In other words? You got individual Karma that people judge the world Karma by. They put the world Karma down on me. Judge me and say I’m responsible for the generation of the sixties. And you’re in too much of a hurry with your mind to try and slow your mind down to understand mine.
Horin: I’m not trying to understand yours.
Manson: I know you’re not.
Horin: I’m not.
Manson: You’re rushing right through it and not listening to what I am saying.
Horin: I’m just trying to make some things clear.
Manson: Go ahead, you can figure it out later.
Horin: What was it that made the authorities do all that to you?
Manson: I’m tough. I’m tough.
Horin: You’re terrible?
Manson: I’m bad.
Horin: You’re in prison for 22 years. You say you are free. You say you don’t mind your cell. But still the fact is you’re in this thing called prison.
Horin: Do you feel your period in prison is an injustice, do you feel as if you should still be here?
Manson: No, I don’t think justice is a loose word. Justice.
Horin: Do you think that you should be here?
Manson: No, no, absolutely not.
Horin: Do you think they are keeping you here in spite?
Manson: Sure, sure, they are keeping me here.
Horin: So, are they holding on to you for no just reason, is that what’s going on?
Manson: Sure, they’re holding onto me.
Manson: They’re all scared to death without me; without me they’d go crazy.
Manson: I’m holding all their minds. You hear the story about the fool on the hill? Everybody used to go by and make jokes at him and crack fun at him and get off on him all the time. And pretty soon they looked up and he was gone. The whole place burnt down and everybody went crazy. Because he was holding their minds. They’re weak; they’re weak in their minds. They’re like chickens. They got to have somebody to peck on all the time. And when they don’t have somebody to peck on, to pick on they, you know… They look around; where are they gonna flex their muscles Where’s the mirror at? You know, they gotta have the mirror.
Horin: Do you think society holds onto Manson in order to have sense of self?
Manson: No, it’s not— wait a minute— it’s not a personal thing. It’s an individual thing. Democracy is no good. Democracy is rotten. Democracy is built on picking on the little people.
Horin: Yeah, but I still don’t understand what is special about you.
Manson: Why was I picked? Because my grandfather was a veteran in the first world war.
Horin: Oh, don’t start! How do you know?
Manson: You asked me! And then you don’t understand it so you want to be condescending. Why do you want to be condescending for? Now, wait a minute— that man sits on the Bible, on the rule book, on the court, on the regulations, on the sergeant, on the lieutenants, on the ARMY, on the AirForce, the Navy, the court room, and my grandfather’s grave is right down the hallway. And I know I didn’t break the law. And sooner or later he’s going to say Charlie didn’t get his rights. And somebody else is going to say Charlie didn’t get his rights. And whoa the heads are going to start falling then. Because my grandfather gave his life for my rights. So I got one dead person in that hallway already, coming for my rights. And that’s the Holy Ghost there, and I’m going to get my rights sooner or later.
Horin: What do you think will happen this coming parole date?
Manson: What do I think will happen at my parole date?
Horin: What are you going to tell them?
Manson: I don’t think I’m going to tell them anything. I don’t see any use for that. I want, I want— look here, let me try to communicate this. Every one of you people that walk out on that street you take your rights for granted. You walk up and down the highway, and you park your cars, and you live your life according to your checkbooks, and your accounts and your banks, and so forth. And one little guy like me that don’t read and write too well loses his rights down in the basement, you don’t really care about that. You don’t care if I’m down in solitary confinement or if I got my teeth knocked out, or whether I got burned up, or whether— or whatever. You don’t care. All you care about is your own individual rights. But when you take my rights, it’s just a matter of time before someone folds yours down.
Horin: Why do you think it is that your rights were taken away from you?
Manson: I didn’t get a trial, woman. I didn’t get to call one witness. I didn’t get one day of a defense in the courtroom. Not one day of a defense in the courtroom. I didn’t get to call one witness. You know why i didn’t get to call a witness? And if I tell you this, you’re not going to understand it.
Horin: Try me.
Manson: President Roosevelt told the governor of New York city, who was then the district attorney of New York city named Dewey, to put Lucky Luciano in jail whether he had to break the law or not. He gave the district attorney permission to break the law; coming from President Roosevelt.
Manson: To put the head Mafioso from New York City in Sing Sing Prison, and Dewey became governor of New York. They paid a prostitute to lie on the witness stand. When they paid the woman to lie on the witness stand, the Italian Catholic Church seen that they were lying in the district attorney’s office. I was tried by Vincent Bugliosi.
Manson: An Italian catholic.
Horin: Yeah, I know.
Manson: And Stovitz was a Polish Jew. And the Polish Jew and the Italian catholic changed seats in Rome. And Rambo made fifty-billion dollars off my dune buggy. And just came back from France with my pants, again, you see. In other words, like, you haven’t given me my rights. Now, the D.A. is fighting his case— the district attorney is fighting his case. I’m still fighting mine— I want my rights in a courtroom! My father set a courtroom in that battlefield in Germany [points to forehead]. I got a teardrop in world war one and my father went to World War Two. My grandfather went to World War One. That guarantees me my constitutional rights in a court of law. Now, some Italian from New York wants to come over, and because Roosevelt lied to his father, he wants to lie to this guy. I say, “No man, do that on somebody else’s time. Don’t do it on mine. “Because if you lie on me, I will go to the crypt! I will bring up Hitler and bring him back and give him to you. Because I know the truth. When I was in the courtroom, the district attorney was fighting with words.
Manson: And education. I was fighting with what I knew on the level I was on.
Manson: The district attorney, the district attorney fought his case with words. They wouldn’t give me no defense. I fought my case with motions. As I talk to you, I speak in motions to your soul on a subliminal level. In other words, I live in the subconscious world, because all my life I lived in jail, looking out. So I live inside looking out, you live outside looking in. I live in the subconscious. I understand the infinite consciousness. I knew your leader was sick and dying before anyone else knew he was sick and dying.
Horin: How do you know what happened to him?
Manson: Because I listen to everything. I know what everyone’s thinking, because I’ve been in the hole all my life. I’ve been in jail all my life.
Horin: How come your motions and your music wasn’t strong enough to win their way into the verbal world and make the verbal world change?
Manson: I’m doing this [claps hands in rhythm]. People follow it. But I never show them this [waves his hands]. Because if I show them that, they’ll steal it. And then they will run out there and they will tell you, “I’M THE GODFATHER OF SOUL!” In other words, I keep it on a certain level here to where they can understand it on the level. And I never take it any further than I want them to take it, so they can steal it and take off down the road with it. That’s music. Music comes from the heart and it comes from the soul.
Horin: Do you want to get out of here?
Manson: Get out of here I’m already out of here. I’m out of here in all kinds of different places. I’m out of here in places—
Horin: Do you want out of prison? Do you want out of SHU?
Manson: If you open that door, I will walk out.
Horin: You will?
Manson: Unless that guy tells me not to. [laughs] If he tells me not to, then I’ll wait till he says it’s okay.
Horin: Let’s say you’re free today, in what way would you make your life different from the life you had before? Before you were incarcerated in 1969.
Manson: I don’t see life like that.
Horin: What would you have done with yourself?
Manson: I don’t live with what happened yesterday. That’s gone. What happened is gone, man.
Horin: How would you make tomorrow different from yesterday?
Manson: ATWA. I’ve been working on a program called ATWA.
Horin: Tell me about it.
Manson: Stop cutting the trees down, for the air, water, trees and wildlife. I’ve learned to project it in the power of music.
Manson: Well, I come into a lot of new thoughts that I never had before.
Horin: Tell me about it.
Manson: The last time I told someone about it they went to Turkey and I never seen them no more. [laughs] You know, there’s some things you can’t tell people about until it’s time to tell them about it.
Horin: What advice would you give today to a person whose is living like you?
Manson: I have no advice. I’m not an advice giving type of person. I’m not in the business of forgiveness.
Horin: What advice would you give a friend—
Horin: About living the good life, the right life?
Manson: Right life, good life, hmm…
Horin: Meaningful life. Life with value.
Manson: The world is coming to an end. You can’t conceive it because your brain is about the size of a walnut. I can’t lay it into your ass because I can’t get to you. You know— I’m not out there with you enough for you to get to see me and know me. You can’t see me in a minute. You can’t look at me in an hour.
Horin: I’m not trying to see you in a minute.
Manson: I’m a complex entity, man. I’m way on the top of Star Trek. I’m out in the desert, man. I live in holes and pits. I run with mushrooms and wild Indians, man. I’m crazy. I’m loonier than Loony Tunes. You know, I’m on the moon all the way back to a nickel. You know. In other words, like, I ride a motorcycle. I don’t take no shit, I fuck people up bad by just looking at me funny.
Horin: Ah, you’re not bad.
Manson: I’m terrible, I’m terrible. I tell you, lady, I’m terrible. You know, you people got me in irons. Why do you think they got me in irons? Why do you think they put me against the wall and back up?
Horin: I really don’t know.
Manson: You don’t know? Figure it out in your dreams. You may see me as a nice guy because you’re a nice guy. You may see me as what you think is okay, but I’m not really okay. I’m nasty. I’m really mean.
Horin: Why are you not okay?
Manson: Because I got—
Horin: What did you do that was so bad?
Manson: I got a lot of things in my mind that I’m working on.
Horin: The mind is not violent.
Manson: The mind is everything.
Horin: What can you do with your violent mind?
Manson: The mind is everything.
Horin: In what way do you think you’re so dangerous?
Manson: In what way am I— I’m not different; I’m just like everyone else.
Horin: Do you think you’re so bad?
Manson: I’m locked up in prison for 9 counts of mass murder. So, I must be no good somewhere. I’m terrible. [stands up and points finger] Bang! [laughs]I’m convicted for murder. And playing a pinball machine. Look here, I’m in jail because people want to keep me in jail. It ain’t got nothing to do with the law. The law ain’t got nothing to do with it. The Mafioso was killed and the back phonebook come up missing. When they did the music wrong and they put half white, half black in the music. And Stromberg burnt my music up in Universal Studios— that’s why Universal Studios has been burnt down twice.
Horin: I know
Manson: And Universal Studios will continue to get burnt down. They will continue to burn Universal Studios down. The county jail runs that town. You get somebody in that county jail and you bust them in the mouth, and say you do what I say and stomp them in the ground. You do what you’re told. When the police tell you to do something, you do it. If you don’t do it, they will put you in the cell and take you down to solitary confinement and give you some medication and lock you up in the nut ward somewhere. You do what you’re told to do.
Horin: You’re convicted of conspiracy, you yourself didn’t murder anyone.
Manson: No one ever said anything about conspiracy
Horin: As far as I know, you are here for conspiracy to commit murder.
Manson: Well, if that’s what I’m here for they should let me out about 14 years ago. Because conspiracy only carries something like 7 years.
Horin: After 22 years in prison, what can you say about all the prisons you’ve been? How do you feel about prison?
Manson: Hmm, I don’t know whether— that’s a waste of time to even think about something that insane. You know, I don’t think about that, that much. I put it— I keep putting it behind me. You know, I just keep putting it and putting it behind me in hopes that it will deal with it itself. I don’t judge. I don’t want to be the judge. They got judges down there on the court. They do that. Judge Wapner does all that. That’s his job; he gets paid to do that. These guys get paid to put people in line and judge them. I don’t get paid to do that. That’s not on me.
Horin: Do you ever think that you will get out of here?
Manson: I don’t know. I got some people with guns out there now working on it.
Horin: If you were a Mafiosi, you wouldn’t be here now.
Manson: I’ve been a Mafioso. For years.
Horin: No, you haven’t.
Manson: There ain’t no Mafioso.
Horin: No, you havent.
Manson: No, no, no.
Horin: You’re just being a 60s type of dude.
Manson: Tell me something about the underworld. I’ve only been in prison for 46 years. So you tell me something you know about the underworld.
Horin: About which underworld?
Manson: Are you talking about the Cleveland barber chair? Have you noticed the streets since I’ve been arrested?
Horin: I wasn’t in America when you were arrested.
Manson: How long you been in the United States now?
Horin: Three years.
Manson: How many?
Manson: Three? Yeah, well you don’t know much about what I am talking about, anyway.
Horin: I don’t, tell me.
Manson: It’s been quite a change. The first change— the first— the first change— the first change came from here [bows in prayer].
Horin: Oh, don’t start.
Manson: Wait a minute— why don’t you— why don’t you— aw, bitch! I ought to smack you right in your mouth. I would, I would! And there ain’t nobody in the fucking world who will do a fucking thing about it except him. I’ll smack you in your fucking mouth and make you understand what I am saying to you, see.
Horin: Are you serious?
Mason: Because that’s the only way you will understand. I knew I didn’t want to do this interview with you! Because I knew you were gonna cop this attitude on me, witch! You dig what I am saying. You cop this “I’m better than you, I know more than you.” You don’t know half of what I am talking about! Now, listen. In the barber shop, in the penitentiary, there is a sideburn. And you will notice that the sideburn in the last 20 years was cut up here. If you notice, I was the first guy to start that sideburn being cut. And when I came to jail, the cop came up and said, “You will do this!” I said, “No I won’t do that!” And I didn’t do it. And I kept the sideburn. And I kept the hair. And I kept the beard. And he will tell you that 25 years ago, we was not allowed to have long hair and a beard.
Horin: So, you mean the prison system changed?
Manson: I put long hair and a beard on this prison system. Now, the devil got no power here. You know why the devil’s got no power here? Because I’ll whoop him in the ass every chance I get. I always did. Because he’s a coward and a punk. He don’t even go in the chapel.
Horin: He don’t?
Manson: No. [laughs] I got a hold over there. I go in the garden. I got a whole world back here, man. Got a whole world back here.
Horin: Describe it.
Horin: The whole world you have back there.
Manson: Peace. Harmony, music. You know the good thing about an animal? If you come up to an animal and you show them big teeth you don’t have to bite him. He can see you got big teeth, he’ll get down off of you. And leave you alone. I got nature.
Horin: What is it about you—
Manson: Nothing. It’s nothing, man. I’m just a little runaway kid. I’m just a street kid. Just a throw away child.
Horin: Tell us about you.
Manson: There’s nothing to tell.
Horin: You told me, I want to— I forgot—
Manon: [talks fast and gibberish] See, in other words, I life in a faceless world.
Horin: Do you hope, that deep down, that this interview will change public opinion of you?
Manson: I’m not looking for sympathy. I don’t give a fuck about the public.
Horin: Can you trace your life in some way that can explain how you have gotten you to be this special thing?
Manson: Sweetheart, I don’t live like that. I don’t think like you.
Horin: Try to.
Manson: My life is in that uniform. My life is in the chow. My life is in the CCC camp. My life is in the trees. And the forest service. My life is in the water. In the Feather Rivers; I’m trying to get the Feather Rivers back on the ground again. I’ve got things that I’m doing with my life that’s got nothing to do with Hollywood. It’s got—
Horin: I’m not coming from Hollywood. I’m not trying to bring you as a star—
Manson: I’m not saying you do. I’m just telling that I’m not— that I’m— I don’t give a fuck about entertaining people. I don’t give a fuck about entertaining people. I’m not running for office. I don’t give a fuck. Its better that you hate me. Because that way you stay further away from me. Because I really don’t like people around me. I really don’t like people, I really don’t.
Manson: Because they’re rotten.
Manson: Because they lie too much.
Manson: They cheat and hurt—
Horin: What is it, do you think, that make them so rotten?
Manson: You know, why, why? I’m not a sociologist. Is it my job to heal and deal to the world? I’m not the savior. You know, don’t put saving the world on me. That’s what got me in this mother fucking insanity, man. You put that mother fucking good guy on me, man. They fucking crucified my ass, and then you say you don’t believe in me. I say, “Okay.” Okay, I died a hundred times in this hallway and then you say I ain’t no good and I’m rotten. And I say, “Okay.” And I have to start all over. Every time I start all over, I start building up something, and then you come up with that and say, “We wanna do that,” then you take it out and boom!: you stick it up my ravaslam, tell a bunch of fucking lies on me, start some more shit in some newspaper, put another one of them stupid fucking books out with a lot of fucking horseshit that somebody wants to buy. People want to buy that insanity. They don’t want the truth, they want fear. They want violence. They want sex and drugs and guns. They want that. That’s what they want.
Horin: What is it that you have, that they always wanted?
Horin: You said people always wanted something.
Manson: Motion. I got motion. And music. I got a creative mind that’s wide open to the universe. I got “individual.”
Horin: Is there anything that you could have told them that might of convinced them that you got what they wanted?
Manson: I did.
Manson: I’m trying to tell you.
Manson: Stop construction.
Horin: Stop construction, and do what ?
Manson: Construction is destruction. You can’t build a house unless you tear a tree down. You’re destroying the tree to build a house.
Horin: So you’re preaching back to nature?
Manson: I’m preaching rebirth. We started a rebirth movement in 67.
Horin: Whose “we,” the Manson Family?
Manson: Well, yeah, the Family— what they called the Family. The Red, Yellow, Green, Gold, all the girls that were singing in the group. We had a group called The Family. And we sang songs about getting back to earth and getting reborn again. But everybody stole that and took it to the presidency. See, you got a lot of double-dealing, see. You know how many movies people steal? They hold us in cells just so they can run and make movies about us. Selleck has been stealing me. Hanson has been stealing me. They come from England stealing me off the Crystal Palace. They come stealing me all over the world. They keep taking my life off. I’m gonna make a movie about convicts who get mad at actors that steal their lives. And when we get out of jail, they’re coming to Hollywood to look them actors up and see if we can’t charge some rent.
Manson: You’re selling my own mind back to me, man. You’re stealing my very soul. You’re stealing my existence every day, man.
Horin: Why are you kept in security housing?
Manson: Why? All kinds of different reasons. Because they’re insecure. Anything they can find an excuse to get off on, you got a whole bunch of people around and everybody wants to make a decision about something and nobody can make a decision. So I’m in the hallway the other day and I let a fart. And this woman came over with her pen and paper and she wrote me up for a fart. I said, you know, “Gee whis.” Man, I can’t even fart without somebody putting it on a piece of paper and taking me to the disciplinary board with it. I can’t out of lock up. If I try to get out of lock up, everybody they all hate me because I’m trying to live my own life.
Horin: Let’s talk about what’s going on in the world today.
Manson: The world’s coming to an end. You can never look at God when you’re looking down at it. You got to get under him and look up at it. And then when you look up at him, you’ll be surprised what you find.
Horin: What do you mean?
Manson: You can’t understand him looking down at him. You got to look up at him.
Horin: Who’s it?
Horin: Wait, I—
Manson: Want me to tell you what you have to do?
Manson: Quit using soap. Quit using bleach. Quit using toxic chemicals to spray waxes on your floors.. Quit using light bulbs. Quit using things that contaminate the earth. Quit using automobiles. Get you some donkeys and some little wagons. Quit building things. Quit cutting trees down. Get all the way back down up underneath that lizard. Get up underneath that lizard. And bow down to that lizard. Because if that lizard dies— whatever you guys do with that war, it don’t matter. It might be better if you all killed yourselves, then maybe the lizard would survive. Because if you kill yourselves in that war over there, you’re going to destroy the world with you.
Horin: Do you think it will arrive to that?
Manson: It’s already there. What do you think it will? What do you think I’m doing in prison? I tried stop it. That’s why I ended up in here. That’s why I’m so insane.
Horin: What actions did you take to stop the world from destroying itself?
Manson: See the first thing, the first thing you don’t understand about— the mind has changed. Change is the mind when the mind comes into change, it comes in through you. It comes in through you. It comes in through you, it creates you. Creation makes news things happen. When you get on your motorcycle and you ride your motorcycle and you [makes sound effects] and you go and smack somebody in the head and say, “Hey how you doing” They don’t realize that you took their mind and you put it in your hand. And told them, “Look, I’m gonna let you live.” And the dude says, “You gonna let me live” I says, “I’m gonna let you live, but you gonna help me quit cutting those trees down now, right?” He says, “Yeah!” I says, “Yeah, let me buy you some ice cream!” And I buy him some ice cream. And I let him go on down the road. And he don’t know that I let him live. He thinks I was joking. Because he don’t think I would kill him. Just like you don’t think I would kill you.
Horin: Well, I don’t think you can.
Manson: I tell you what—
Manson: I tell you what. Just ask any one of them girls that I got arrested with, if I’m not up in there. They got Xs on their foreheads.
Horin: I know.
Manson: Yeah. I went all the way through it. All the way through it. All the way to the other side. I yell up and say, “Anybody there?” They say, “No, only you lord.” Only me? Nobody can get over there? They say, “No.” You can’t get over there, ghost! I got Xs on the head here. [laughing]
Horin: What do the Xs mean?
Manson: Your fingers are black, you see.
Horin: What does this X mean?
Manson: Assalamu Alaikum. It means we’re under the lizard. We’re under the lizard, man. We’re in the desert and under the lizard. We’re putting; we got hoes. We’re planting things. We’re planting things. We got little seedlings and sunflower trees and we’re bringing the water up. We’re bringing the water up out of the cities and putting the water back in the land.
Horin: When you put that X on you, you didn’t associate it with Hitler or anything like that?
Manson: Let me tell you this: You make Hitler into a big person, because he was your fear and you were afraid of him. Your mother was afraid of him. Wait a minute; I’m not afraid of Hitler. Hitler was a little teardrop that fell from the prison’s eye. Hitler was only one little person.
Horin: What does the X mean?
Manson: You know what it is, it is an Alcatraz Indian. It’s an Indian called “Walksontop.”
Horin: Do you have any resentment to any member of the Manson Family? Do you feel they’ve done you harm?
Manson: I don’t have thoughts like that. I don’t think like that. I don’t resent, I don’t— I don’t have thoughts like that.
Horin: Charlie, you made that Mansonite [holes up a scorpion], what does it mean to you making these dolls? Can you tell me about it?
Horin: What do they mean to you?
Manson: Something to do. I lived in Mexico city, and there was a whole bunch of nuns in Mexico city. And these nuns would take this thin string and make these black shawls that they wear. And I would show them out to make cigarettes disappear. And on my cigarettes there would be a picture of a spider. And I always used to identify with a spider, and the nuns that made the little things for Jesus. So, I was sitting in the cell and I was tearing a sock apart and I was thinking about them broads and I was thinking, you know. You know, you know real when you see real. That’s the part of me that they hate. Because they don’t like me when they see the real, because they don’t like the real to be seen. Because most people like to hide the real, because the real is always what gets hurt. The real is what we don’t understand. The real is, you know, the real is what we push under the baby. You know, we put it over by the baby and leave it, you know. The real is difficult. The real is, it says this: “Surrender! Give it up! Every bit of it! I want it all!” One world. That’s the only way we’re gonna survive. One world government. One money. One computer. One zoo. One prison. One person. One. If not, I’m gonna sneak out on you. And when I sneak out, I’m just gonna fuck and kill and party until it’s over. Because if you don’t do it this way [holds up one finger], there ain’t no [holds up two fingers] that. There ain’t no two of nothing. There ain’t no two of nothing. There’s one; there’s only one Japan. I got it already. I got 5 samurais in this same fucking hallway. I’ve already locked them. To the emperor, I’ve already got it. To Germany, I already got Germany. I got France. I got it all locked right here like a big octopus. I’ve already locked it down. That’s the ghost. That’s Idi Amin. That’s Jomo Kenyatta. That’s Mau Mau. That’s African. That’s the world. That’s the black star that shines all around the world; you dig what I’m saying. I got a white star over here shining all the way to Norway. All the way to the Palace. All the way to Sweden. All the way to Latin America. Everywhere. The only person that won’t surrender is you. You won’t give it up because you still want to be the man. We both can’t be the man. You gonna have to either be the man or the woman. If you want to be the women, you can do it. I mean, for the trees. You know, whatever I got to do. Whatever how I can serve, but I served this house at the end. I keep serving to the end and all you’re doing is picking up and making stupid movies out of me. For TV policemen. You keep making TV and Hard copy out of me for some stupid fucking ignorant asshole can have a silly ass thing that ain’t doing anything for nobody. It’s not helping anything. We got to stop cutting trees now! And the only way o do it is to stand up on top of the world and say, “Do!—” Only way, we’re gonna do it is— okay, okay. The only way we’re gonna do it is get up on top of the world and say, “You either stop cutting the trees, or we’re gonna crucify you.” And you can’t just say it, you got to do it. Because if you don’t do it then they think you’re bullshit.
Horin: Let’s say the parole board decides to let you out. How would you live your life? What would you have done with all of the music and all your power?
Manson: Nothing. It has to be— everything’s in here. The control is inside the ship. This is a big ship that we live in, man. This is a big ship. This is a big ship. The hallways a— it goes all the way to Montezuma. It’s a bottomless pit. There’s millions and millions of peoples’ minds in here. Uh, I can’t even, I can’t see, I can’t realize, uh, parole board. Because, like, the last time I went to the parole board they got the Chinese and the Russians at the parole board. They got a china man named Chong and guy named Slovitch. In other words, they’re letting Russia out of prison before they will let me out of prison. They let the Ayatollah out of prison before they let me out of prison. They let out, uh, Sabo-suku Do-boogie-bow-wow, they let em out. They let all them guys out before they let me out.
Horin: So you don’t think they will ever let you out?
Manson: I don’t— if they let me out, what are they gonna do?
Horin: What are you going to do yourself, then?
Manson: They’d run. They’d clear— if I said I was moving to Compton, everybody in Compton would leave. You don’t realize how much it is. You see a little bit, you don’t realize. You know how many books they put out. Something like 58 trash-head books. That’s more than Hitler had put out against him. When he came to a town everybody stood up in parades. In other words, you don’t realize how big it is. It’s big; it’s so big that only you could bring it home. Only you could really bring it home. You know, because you have to bring it home to the whole world. You couldn’t bring it home to half of the world. You couldn’t bring it to New York. You can’t bring it to Oregon and hide it in the bushes. I wanted to take it to the desert and hide it in the desert. You know what it is; you know what we’re dealing with here?
Manson: We’re dealing with the majesty of the whole world.
Horin: Meaning you are that connected?
Manson: It’s not only me, I’m just one of all of the Xs. There’s all kinds of other people doing it. We— we just didn’t come here with me alone. Bobby Beausoleil from France is here. He’s eagled all out. He’s got dead people in the bushes. He’s killing, he’s thrilling, he’s covered in blood. Bobby’s out in the— he’s riding his bike. He’s got his motorcycles over doing other— I got shit going on all over this mother fucking country, man. I’m not just locked up in the cell. You seen Vinny come up. Vinny’s one little, you know— the dust off the end of it—
Voice: We’re on an hour.
Horin: Listen, I’ve got to go. It was nice seeing you.
Manson: Did we communicate somewhat? Did you take one of this hand? Don’t be offended by anything I said, because if this glass wasn’t here—if this glass wasn’t here—I wouldn’t have said half of that stuff. Y’all have a good day.
[After being handcuffed, talking through the prison door.]
Manson: If I don’t have my rights, what have my kids got?
Horin: So you want to stay here for more time, just for a retrial?
Manson: Well, it depends on how the principals— I have principals that I have to live and die by. I have things I believe in that I got to hold on to. If I don’t, then what am I? A piece of meat You can go buy that at a butcher shop and get 150 pounds of hamburger. That’s the thing that—
Horin: So you want a retrial, do you think you have a chance?
Manson: I prefer having my rights. Because if I don’t have my rights, then what the hell am I getting out for?
Horin: Do you really think if you have a retrial, you will just walk?
Manson: It wouldn’t matter if I win or lose. It’s that I got my rights. I didn’t break the law. I know that and God knows that. I know what happened and nobody else knows what happened. I didn’t break the law; it’s that simple.
“I don’t know all the things you know, but you don’t know the things I know either, and I don’t disrespect you and take your rights. So give me my fucking rights. You can’t fool me. You can’t trick me. I didn’t have nothing to do with killing those people, period. I’ve told you that all the way down the line. I wasn’t around anyone when they were killed. I’m not saying I’m not capeable of doing it myself, but I’m just saying this: I did not do that. And I could’ve proved it in a court of law.” — Charles Manson (Parole Hearing, 1997).