Stay close to your televisions on Tuesday, Aug. 13. That's when Discovery Channel will air ID Investigates: Killer Truckers. It's the latest episode in a string of salacious spectacles highlighting everything evil that lurks out there in the night. The show is beamed into 84 million U.S. households, and it's just the kind of PR boost trucking needs like another DPF.
The press release sent to most major media outlets to promote the show begins, "Big rig drivers of America’s interstates rule the roads and supply our lives, delivering everything from clothing and food to livestock and fuel. But for some asphalt cowboys, the highways provide more than a living. They serve as a hunting ground."
Oh great, just what folks need to hear.
The program highlights the deeds of four truckers-turned-serial-killers, John Robert Williams, Robert Ben Rhoades, Wayne Adam Ford and Adam Leroy Lane, all now safely behind bars and best forgotten.
But hey, what television journalist can resist the opportunity to play on American's fear and loathing of truck drivers by retelling the gruesome and wholly unrepresentative stories of these four creeps. There are what, 3 million truckers in this country? That a handful of them go off the rails committing sadistic torture and murder makes it necessary to cast a pall over this entire industry?
Here's another chunk of the press release: "ID Investigates: Killer Truckers pulls back the curtain to explore contributing forces and environments that breed criminality along our nation’s highways through the lens of four distinct stories of tragedy ..."
Contributing forces and environments that breed criminality along our nation’s highways? I guess that some 2,999,996 of this nation's truck drivers have so far managed to avoid the sort of temptation that led the other four down such a dark path is some sort of a victory for humanity. Are we all potential serial killers because we eat truck stop food, listen to country music and record every minute of our lives in a logbook? That seems to be the message intoned in that PR blurb.
I'm saddened by shows like this. I don't think they do anything toward honoring the memories of the victims, or to warn the public of the real dangers og driving aggressively around trucks. Such shows are just another stain on the tarnished canvas that television has become. And they tarnish the reputation of all the hard-working men and women who would go as far as trying not to run over a stray raccoon on an Interstate highway.
Upon reading of the upcoming broadcast, I took the liberty of researching the four demons soon to be idolized by the Discovery Channel. They are all despicable excuses for human beings, unworthy of anything more than a very brief obituary.
"Investigation Discovery’s all-new documentary special, ID INVESTIGATES: KILLER TRUCKERS takes a hard look at predators in the fast lane, illuminating a dark corner of America’s mobile society, in which the open road can both hide and drive deadly intentions."
I can hardly wait.