(Prosecution witness Paul Watkins, age 20, testified about the meaning of Helter Skelter.)
Direct examination by Vincent Bugliosi:
"During your association with Charles Manson, did he frequently discuss Helter Skelter with you?"
"He used the word 'Helter Skelter' constantly?"
"I wouldn't go so far as to say constantly. He did not say, 'Helter Skelter, Helter Skelter, Helter Skelter.' But he did quite a bit, yes, it seemed to be the main topic."
On How Helter Skelter Would Start
"There would be some atrocious murders; that some of the spades from Watts would come up into the Bel-Air and Beverly Hills district and just really wipe some people out, just cut bodies up and smear blood and write things on the wall in blood, and cut little boys up and make parents watch. So, in retaliation-this would scare; in other words, all the other white people would be afraid that this would happen to them, so out of their fear they would go into the ghetto and just start shooting black people like crazy. But all they would shoot would be the garbage man and Uncle Toms, and all the ones that were with Whitey in the first place. And underneath it all, the Black Muslims would-he would know that it was coming down."
"Helter Skelter was coming down?"
"Yes. So, after Whitey goes in the ghettoes and shoots all the Uncle Toms, then the Black Muslims come out and appeal to the people by saying, 'Look what you have done to my people.' And this would split Whitey down the middle, between all the hippies and the liberals and all the up-tight piggies. This would split them in the middle and a big civil war would start and really split them up in all these different factions, and they would just kill each other off in the meantime through their war. And after they killed each other off, then there would be a few of them left who supposedly won."
"A few of who left?"
"A few white people left who supposedly won. Then the Black Muslims would come out of hiding and wipe them all out."
"Wipe the white people out?"
"Yes. By sneaking around and slitting their throats."
"Did Charlie say anything about where he and the Family would be during this Helter Skelter?"
"Yes. When we was [sic] in the desert the first time, Charlie used to walk around in the desert and say-you see, there are places where water would come up to the top of the ground and then it would go down and there wouldn't be no more water, and then it would come up again and go down again. He would look at that and say, 'There has got to be a hole somewhere, somewhere here, a big old lake.' And it just really got far out, that there was a hole underneath there somewhere where you could drive a speedboat across it, a big underground city. Then we started from the 'Revolution 9' song on the Beatles album which was interpreted by Charlie to mean the Revelation 9. So-"
"The last book of the New Testament?"
"Just the book of Revelation and the song would be 'Revelations 9: So, in this book it says, there is a part about, in Revelations 9, it talks of the bottomless pit. Then later on, I believe it is in 10."
"Yes. It talks about there will be a city where there will be no sun and there will be no moon."
"Manson spoke about this?"
"Yes, many times. That there would be a city of gold, but there would be no life, and there would be a tree there that bears twelve different kinds of fruit that changed every month. And this was interpreted to mean-this was the hole down under Death Valley."
"Did he talk about the twelve tribes of Israel?"
"Yes. That was in there, too. It was supposed to get back to the 144,000 people. The Family was to grow to this number."
"The twelve tribes of Israel being 144,000 people?"
"And Manson said that the Family would eventually increase to 144,000 people?"
"Did he say when this would take place?"
"Oh, yes. See, it was all happening simultaneously. In other words, as we are making the music and it is drawing all the young love to the desert, the Family increases in ranks, and at the same time this sets off Helter Skelter. So then the Family finds the hole in the meantime and gets down in the hole and lives there until the whole thing comes down."
"Until Helter Skelter comes down?"
"Did he say who would win this Helter Skelter?"
"The karma would have completely reversed, meaning that the black men would be on top and the white race would be wiped out; there would be none except for the Family."
"Except for Manson and the Family?"
"Did he say what the black man would do once he was all by himself?"
"Well, according to Charlie, he would clean up the mess, just like he always has done. He is supposed to be the servant, see. He will clean up the mess that he made, that the white man made, and build the world back up a little bit, build the cities back up, but then he wouldn't know what to do with it, he couldn't handle it."
"Blackie couldn't handle it?"
"Yes, and this is when the Family would come out of the hole, and being that he would have completed the white man's karma, then he would no longer have this vicious want to kill."
"When you say 'he,' you mean Blackie?"
"Blackie then would come to Charlie and say, you know, 'I did my thing, I killed them all and, you know, I am tired of killing now. It is all over.' And Charlie would scratch his fuzzy head and kick him in the butt and tell him to go pick the cotton and go be a good nigger, and he would live happily ever after."
On Manson and Death
...."We was sitting around on acid, and I was getting kind
feeling really weird, getting really stoned, and I was reacting quite a
bit. And Charlie was telling me to die. He was just saying 'Die,' just
'Die.' And I didn't just die. So he jumped up and started choking me.
first I sort of fought it. I mean, I was going to physically fight it.
Then I knew there was something else going on, so I didn't. I just laid
there. But I was emotionally fighting it. In other words, I was scared,
and really, really afraid. He was laying on top of me, looking into my
eyes, and he was actually overpowering me. My throat wasn't strong
to overcome the strength in his hands, and I noticed that there was a
between my fear and how strong his hands were on my throat, because it
puzzled me that he could overcome me like this. So then it was going on
for quite a while, in other words I was really running out of air, and
then he smiled and looked in my eyes
and he says, 'I'm going to kill you now.' And at that point I
thought I was dead anyway so I just says well, I couldn't talk, but I
sort of mentally said, 'Okay, I give up, go ahead.' And he jumped off
he sat back and smiled and said, 'Then if you are willing to die, then
you don't have to die.' Then he said, 'Come on and make love with me.'