Hill’s name inevitably surfaces in any discussion concerning Annie or Ray-always a shadowy figure with what appears to be an inordinate amount of luck or friends in high places.
Not the sharpest tool in the shed I think with his laughable rendition of the mysterious Mr. X- Peltier’s wannabe fabricated homeboy coming to the rescue. But like the line from Sultans of Swing by Dire Straits:
Harry doesn’t mind if he doesn’t make the scene- He’s got a daytime job, he’s doing alright………
Avoiding the scene has been a vocation-one he’s been adept at, no interviews, save the comical Mr. X skit, no bragging of deeds ala Peltier, no seeking the spotlight, movie career, or even a book. Not so much as a whimper-just another aged toothless predator
who must now lay in wait for something to pass by.
No, the inimitable Hill prefers anonymity, and like Brando in On The Waterfront believes he could have been somebody-he could have been a contender.
If there is any comfort to be found in the midst of this lament perhaps solace will be present in the knowledge that he is somebody-a person of interest in ongoing and newly re-opened investigations.
Chin up “Mr. X”, the spotlight awaits, and along with the original audience a new generation is eager to hear the taking of the Fifth- but it ain’t over til it’s over. The Fifth, that device which to me so clearly speaks to and defines a multitude of things.
No Janklow this time to grant absolution-little if any wiggle room-wiggle room that can only be purchased at the expense of another, not for anything as mundane as thirty pieces of silver, rather testimony to indict others to save ones own sorry ass in that process
known as immunity- an immunity from prosecution that replaces the communion wafer and leaves only the admonition to go and sin no more, lending credibility to the concept that indeed crime does pay at times.
I understand this process of bartering information for immunity, I understand that it is often an essential ingredient, a necessary evil- but I loathe the necessity of it. I loathe the fact that all it requires to escape justice is to assist in visiting it upon another regardless of how well deserved it might be.
A necessity created by the unwillingness of bit players, or good people stepping up to do the right thing- The right thing, once a standard, a tradition- now a tradition lost not all that long ago and facilitated by the beast AIM became, the rogues that populated it, and individuals like Harry David Hill, aka Mr.X. who ran in predatory packs that separated the vulnerable, taking them down while nipping at the heels and intimidating others into silence.
Silence IS consent, or as it is said in Latin, Qui tacet consentire videtur- a legal term that translates to giving consent to this thing. This thing of murder, of abduction, of rape, of burnings and bombings, looting, and outright theft and destruction. Of shooting an unarmed man and leaving him to die in a desperate rictus of indifference and being alone.
Silence has led to decades of grief and misery, murders, destruction and abuses on an epic scale-time to end that, time for all the people to remember who they are, where they came from, what it means, and above all to withhold consent, and in so doing resurrect honor and dignity.
How dead must a heart and spirit be to ignore, condone, or excuse such things as these? What degree of detachment, how great a fear, what code?