2) Were there any mitigating circumstances? He was bullied in school. His parents divorced, and he had conflicts with his stepmother. And yet I got the sense that he was the main cause of his own misery. He wasn’t liked because he wasn’t likeable. It’s a vicious circle, I suppose.
3) I was shocked at how openly racist this kid was. He was a Eurasian obsessed with “hot blonde girls” and he shows vile scorn for any Asian, black or Latino man who has the nerve to date a white woman. I know there are millions of other racists who share these attitudes, but it’s rare to see them expressed in print like this. The newspaper reports didn’t emphasize this aspect of his personality, which seemed surprising given the fact that three of Rodger’s victims were his two Asian roommates and their Asian friend. In the manifesto, Rodger calls his roommates “repulsive.”
4) The kid was a world-class narcissist. Just listen to him: “Humanity has never accepted me among them, and now I know why. I am more than human. I am superior to them all. I am Elliot Rodger… Magnificent, glorious, supreme, eminent… Divine! I am the closest thing there is to a living god. Humanity is a disgusting, depraved, and evil species. It is my purpose to punish them all. I will purify the world of everything that is wrong with it. On the Day of Retribution, I will truly be a powerful god, punishing everyone I deem to be impure and depraved.” It’s hard to take this stuff seriously, right? And yet the kid kept his promise. He had his Day of Retribution.
No, it’s definitely not pleasant reading. But texts like this are windows on the world of evil, and getting a good view of the Adversary can be useful for both fiction and life.