Some human beings are barely human. They are stone cold. This detachment has enabled them to commit murders and violent crimes without any remorse. So do we just lock them up and throw away the key? (sorry about the cliché) I watched a documentary about an online predator in England who murdered a 14 year old (Breck), after grooming him for over 12 months online gaming. The murderer was only 17, (about 19 now) but was a very skilled controller and manipulator. I don't know the label for this person: psychopath, sociopath, narcissist, paedophile, sadist? Apparently the murderer was an abandoned child himself and God knows how awful his own childhood was. Possibly molested and unspeakable suffering at the hands of dysfunctional parents. If I were to write a story of this predator ,as the main character and narrator, I would have to have compassion for him, wouldn't I? But part of me wants to just forget the idea and cross his name off, as another "wicked" and "evil" criminal, undeserving of my attention. As writers then, do we have have an obligation to find some nugget or jewel of humanity beneath the surface, in this case? Hitler was maybe the worst serial killer of all, even he didn't do the dirty work himself. Has anyone bothered to find a redemptive quality in him? Or would that be a wate of time? I'm not a wannable social worker by the way. I just tend to agonise over these things.