Why Were the Girls Crazy about Charles Manson?

True Crime

Why Were the Girls Crazy about Charles Manson?

Illustration: Sushant Ahire


s obituaries of Charles Manson, cult leader and one of the most culturally enduring murderers in modern history trickle in, the mind inadvertently gravitates toward The Girls, for as senior journalist Julie Beck perfectly put, “The most fascinating part of the Manson story has always been the girls.”

Manson was a troubled dude who had spent half his life in prison until the murders. He played the guitar, formed a twisted philosophical bend based on a Beatles song, and a mishmash of counter-culture, Scientology, and bigotry, but was by all accounts, supremely charismatic. This makes him an “interesting dude” in the drug-riddled hippie culture of the ’60s in America. Add to this the dynamic orations and proliferation of information surrounding him, to which he once added by proclaiming, “I’m Jesus Christ, whether you want to accept it or not, I don’t care”. And we have the perfect blend of personality, self-confidence, rebellious philosophy, and propaganda that makes a cult leader for the hazy minds of young, “peace-loving” hippies.