1995 - Ted Kaczynski                                   Home

                                                                                               The Unabomber

When I read about the Unabomber's 1985 killing of a computer store owner it particularly concerned me given my current profession. I still was unsure if the math professor I had met in 68 was the Unabomber and my lingering prejudices from the FBI's involvement in the cover up of the JFK assassination prevented me from finding out.

It wasn't until September 1995 when the Unabomber's manifesto was published and he came up as an issue on one of the local radio talk shows that I called in to voice my opinion. I didn't mention that I might have met him and help inspire him because I couldn't be sure if Theodore was the Unabomber. I was aware of the one million dollar reward being offered for information leading to his arrest which I now realize I certainly could have provided, but didn't because of my lingering antagonism for the FBI's involvement in covering up the Kennedy Assassination.

I mentioned that the reason he didn't see anything wrong with killing humans was because he wanted to go back to the population we had in the world before industrialization. I pointed out that 90% of the world's population would have to die off if we went back to the lifestyle of the 1700s.

Then I mentioned a book that I had read entitled "Who Wrote the Bible" by a biblical scholar named David Friedman. The word Bible in the title was referring to the old testament and in the book Freidman reviewed scholarship concerning the authors of different parts of the old testament along with his theories.

I was fascinated by the techniques used by these scholars to find out who wrote something written 2500 years ago and wondered why the FBI couldn't get some of these people to look at the unabomber's writings and figure out where he was from and what university he attended. I mentioned that he probably attended a university on the “left coast” but I didn't mention Berkely. It wasn't long after that that his brother gave him up and he was caught.

While in the Butner, NC Federal prison in 2003 I picked up a book about the Unabomber and as soon as I opened the book I saw a picture of the young man that I had talked to on the campus of Berkely in 1968. It wasn't until then that I was positive that Ted Kaczyncski was the mild mannered Theodore. As I read the book I realized that Ted was the brother of the friend Jim had grown up with in Chicago. 

I'm sure I had some influence on Ted dropping out as did his university education and probably Jim's talk also influenced him. At the time my major concern was the war and I really didn't believe in most of the other far left propaganda as Jim did. I can't accept any responsibility for Ted's violent actions but I do feel some guilt about possibly being partly responsible for the world losing the services of such a brilliant mathematician. I love individual freedom and that includes unhindered by government buying and selling and what technology can do to make life easier. The earth has been here long before us and will be here long after we are gone. In a couple hundred thousand years after humans there will be little trace left of our existence on earth. We need to live in harmony with other species, but we have to realize our welfare comes first. When dinasours ruled the earth were they concerned about our ancestor's welfare?