Does Big Creek in Clay County, Kentucky, sound like a place where you would like to run out of gas . . . in the middle of the night . . . with anything but a hill billy accent? Well, let me answer that. No.
Although he didn't run out of gas, as far as we know, some poor bastard named Bill Sparkman unfortunately found himself near Big Creek--it's not clear exactly where--about two weeks ago now, and was murdered. His body was found deep in the Daniel Boone National Forest. Naked, hung from a tree, hands and feet bound with duct tape. His ID as a part-time federal census-taker was duct-taped to the side of his face, and his killer had scrawled "FED" with a felt-tipped pen across his chest. He was 51 years old. (See story here.)
At this point there are few answers about Mr. Sparkman's death, and everybody over there in Kentucky seems pretty close-lipped about this. It's said that Clay county has a number of drug traffickers and meth labs, but there's nothing to indicate these people had anything to do with poor Sparkman's demise.
Here's what I think. I think he was murdered because he was working for the federal government, and he was in the wrong place at the wrong time in Deliverance country. He's a casualty of the right-wing madness that has branded the government of our country as the enemy of everything truly American.
I'll tell you what's truly American about this: mindless, vicious murder of a supposed enemy. We really ought to be proud of ourselves.