The week of January 24, 2016

Finding second chances in unexpected places

By Jesse Hicks

In this week’s issue of the Kernel, we’re looking at redemption, and the ways in which we often go looking for it in the strangest places.

First, I profile Daniel Luke, who, after watching Netflix’s sleep hit docu-series Making a Murderer, decided that he had identified the real killer. Almost immediately, he jumped on a plane, heading from Portland, Oregon, to Manitowoc, Wisconsin. He arrived there expecting a crowd of people demanding justice for Steven Avery and Brendan Dassey, the two men whose court case had been profiled in the series. Like many viewers, he thought the two were innocent, that the justice system had failed them. So he was surprised to find himself alone in Manitowoc, seemingly the only armchair sleuth who’d left his couch. He wanted to right a wrong, and expected to have help. But as he revealed during my conversations with him, his motivations for wanting to solve Teresa Halbach’s murder were as complicated as the case itself.

Meanwhile, closer to home, Nico Lang writes about his visit to the best-reviewed psychic on Yelp. He goes in a skeptic, wondering whether the whole profession of psychic mediumship is a large-scale scam (and perhaps one of the few recession-proof industries). He doesn’t leave a believer, exactly; I won’t spoil the story for you, but the insight he returns with is both touching and insightful.

Enjoy the issue.