Under the Control of Manson / Open Lines

Under the Control of Manson / Open Lines


HostIan Punnett

GuestsDianne Lake, Open Lines

Former Manson family member Dianne Lake joined Ian Punnett (Twitter) in the first half to discuss Charles Manson and how he was able to influence so many people to commit mass murder at his command. She described a difficult and poverty-stricken early childhood until her parents separated and then reunited in California, leading to a better situation. For her 13th birthday, Lake says she even "got a brand new blue Princess phone." But soon, her parents entered the center of the 1960s counterculture and decided that she would be an emancipated minor at age 14. It was at that time she met Charles Manson and the women in his "Family," who she said made her feel "really welcome" after a recent rejection from a commune where her parents were living.

Lake said that she actually enjoyed the recent film Once Upon a Time In Hollywood (which depicts a fictionalized version of the Tate and LaBianca murders) and that it "made it real for me." She said the film did a fairly good job of depicting the atmosphere at the time, and the character of Manson’s group in particular. "Having been there," Lake said that Manson actually believed the "Helter Skelter" myth that he fed to his followers and led to the famous murders. She said the kindness of a Sheriff’s officer who took her in as a foster child made her feel truly loved and provided the structure she didn’t receive from her parents, and gave her the courage to testify against Manson and his followers.


Dave from California was the first caller during Open Lines, and he described hearing about Manson followers in Hawaii in the 1980s, which he heard from a police officer while living there. Ian said the cult continued after the trial, mainly due to Manson’s notoriety. John in Iowa recalled how frightened and affected people were when the news of the Manson murders broke. He described his own feelings as "a fearful, mystical terror." Gordon called from Florida to describe his apparent one-man crusade against local police corruption.

Bill called from Florida said that he counters the arguments of creationists by telling them if creationism is real, "how can I hold the skull of a man-ape in my hand?" Mary in New Jersey said that she agrees with the timelines of the creation as written in the Bible, to which Ian replied that lengths of time in the Bible were, in his opinion, "never meant to be taken literally." Joe in New York asked if it was true that Mike Love of the Beach Boys actually had one of his girls babysit for him. A man also named "Ian" called to relate some apparent ghostly encounters with his recently deceased mother, including a sighting of "white ethereal clouds" in her apartment.


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