The S.L.A letter: Dear Mr Editor, Did you know that the initials SLAY spell "sla", an old Norse word meaning "kill". a friend.
The Badlands card: Sirs -- I would like to expression my consternt (crossed out) consternation concerning your poor taste + lack of sympathy for the public, as evidenced by your running of the ads for the movie "Badlands," featuring the blurb: "In 1959 most people were killing time. Kit + Holly were killing people." In light of recent events, this kind of murder-glorification can only be deplorable at best (not that glorification of violence was ever justifiable) why don't you show some concern for public sensibilities + cut the ad? A citizen.
The Red Phantom letter: Editor: Put Marco back in the hell-hole from whence it came- he has a serious psychological disorder- always needs to feel superior. I suggest you refer him to a shrink. Meanwhile, cancel the Count Marco column. Since the count can write anonymously, so can I----the Red Phantom (red with rage).
The Zodiac Killer could have been toying with the newspapers, disingenuously feigning concern while laughing at the authorities - or he was simply not the author of these banal communications that surfaced in 1974.
The Symbionese Liberation Army didn't have unrealistic ideals, but unfortunately used contemptible means to achieve them.
With many female S.L.A members aligned with feminist ideals, would it be that difficult to believe, that the Red Phantom letter was aimed at Marc H. Spinelli (Count Marco) and his San Francisco Chronicle column because of its often belittling or denigrating comments towards women?
"Betty Friedan, whose 1963 book The Feminine Mystique is credited with reviving the feminist movement, originally called the strike at the conference of the National Organization for Women in March. As head of the hastily assembled National Women's Strike Coalition, she had predicted an impressive turnout. Inevitably, the women had their detractors. The San Francisco Chronicle's Count Marco called the strike "a day of infamy and shame" and urged his supporters to wear black armbands "mourning the death of femininity." link.
"Count Marco was an extremely popular columnist for the San Francisco Chronicle with an outrageous persona; this book of advice (Beauty and the Beast) on how to please a man was mainly for the ladies of "The Greatest Generation" and pre-boomers, whom it surely shocked and annoyed with its sexual frankness and its assumption that American women had everything to learn from European women; feminist readers now would be shocked by his assumption that women's lives are empty without masculine love and their main goal in life should be to please their "beasts." link. In other words, the Red Phantom letter was authored by a female member of the Symbionese Liberation Army (or a male member with a belief in feminism) in order to confront the opinionated columnist.
I am not a staunch advocate of handwriting analysis due to its subjective nature and the fact it can be disguised, but here is the Red Phantom letter next to an extract taken from a Symbionese Liberation Army notebook - written before the kidnapping of Patricia Hearst on February 4th 1974.