The famous Russian author and  dissident, Alexander Solzhenitsyn once wrote these words:  “The line separating good and evil passes not through the states, nor between classes, nor between political parties either—but right through every human heart—and through all human hearts.”

This a very astute observation from a courageous man who recognized evil when he saw it and put himself at risk and definitely in harm’s way in the all seeing-eyes of an all-powerful godless state.

Gumshoe believes through his life experience as a sworn law enforcement officer that every suspect had evil in their hardened hearts.  This evil, however, is not limited to only suspects. Us, also buckaroos!

Evil has permeated our world since the banishment of Mr. and Mrs. Adam and Eve from the garden called Eden.  Entry verboten. It now resides quite comfortably throughout our society and our institutions and in our hearts as well since the fall.

Evil is always a “personal choice”.  The phrase, “The devil made me do it!” seems humorous at first as a lame excuse for anyone to absolve themselves of any mea culpas.

Gumshoe loudly shouts from the nearest rooftop, “Bull****!”

From our earliest childhood recollections, we all inherently knew in our young beating hearts when we did wrong.

We all learned to lie, conceal or shift the blame. Unless we were naturally born sociopaths, (or in some cases psychopaths), we all had a conscience that chewed at our innards until the truth revealed itself from our young mouths with teeth in braces.

Learned behavior perhaps?  Bent moral compasses, maybe.   Monkey see, monkey do? Nope!

Gumshoe believes that one acts accordingly by knowing “the right” from “the wrong”.   This credo has definitely kept “us civilized“ from the “us barbarians” who are pounding at our personal gates to be corrupted.

The road sign pointing to “Perdition this way” passes through our hearts, don’t cha know? It’s our choice to follow or make a “U-Turn”.  Thank you comrade Alex and God bless your soul.

Well, until next time folks, try to always love the ones who love you and even try harder to love the ones who don’t.

Coram Deo!


Danny Pitocco
Danny Pitocco
RETIRED (as a Detective with the Snohomish County Sherriff’s Department, Washington State), Danny has over forty years of law enforcement experience across city, county, state and federal levels of government, including service as a Special Agent for the DEA, US Department of Justice. He’s a decorated law enforcement veteran, and recipient of the "Detective of the Year" award for Snohomish County, Danny is a certified composite artist and has testified as an expert witness in the field of narcotics and modus operandi of particular crimes in state and federal courts in California, and has given testimony before federal grand juries. Danny served four years of active duty in the US Marine Corps and loves Jesus as his personal savior.

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  1. I believe each person created by God comes into this world to have a mind to think, and a heart to love. Even those sweet precious babies who fall under “blessed are the meek” are able to think and act on what is good or bad. We learn our behavior and expectancies from our parent (s), but as we mature and grow into adulthood, we make our own decisions. Hopefully they are good ones, not based solely on how we were raised, but on believing that God was instrumental in all that we are given based on what we learn. Wisdom comes with age. Love comes with loving. If I choose to do “evil”, I choose to do so on my own. St. Poemen on said: ” The beginning of evil is the lack of Vigilance” I believe that to be true as I look around and see with my own eyes that lack of vigilance had produced evil in our younger generation.

    • All true Nightingale. We must all be viligiant since the evil one will constantly try to ambush us when we are not at peace with God.

  2. Great article Gum Shoe. I sort of focused on the word “knowingly” A lot of the statues in the Penal Law starts off with “A person is guilty of (fill in the blanks) when he “knowingly” commits so and so. Although my time in Law Enforcement was ions ago I remember when I interviewed a suspect who eventually admitted to the crime, would always try to find an excuse as to why they did it. “I was only trying to scare him or her”. “I needed the money”. “I was drunk when I hit her”.
    I’m going to stray just a little. Today is Veterans Day, yesterday was Marine Corps Birthday. I think about all those that have gone before us and served without question and in some cases made the ultimate sacrifice. They did this not out of hatred, but I believe out of love for country and felt they were doing the right thing. For some reason we have lost our moral compass. For some, God and Country has no meaning in their lives.

    Growing up my dad used to say it’s a cruel world out there son and no one is going to give you anything, you have to earn it.
    Unfortunately we are living in a society where there are those that don’t want to play by the rules. Take what you want, from whoever you want and there are no consequences. This is evidenced by our current cash less bail laws.
    Someone once said “All it takes for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing”.
    I want to believe that things will get better. That somehow, someway we will get that Moral Compass back. Go back to a country where we once again can be civil to each other. Where laws mean something and our leaders are not only held accountable but take responsibility for their actions.
    Thanks again Gum Shoe.
    Semper Fi

    • Right on all points Tom. Happy Marine Corps birthday you old Jarhead. Chesty Puller would have been one hell of a cop.

  3. Another great article Danny.

    As a Christian my world view is shaped by God’s Word, the Bible. He tells me (and all believers) in the book of Romans not to be conformed to the world but to be transformed by the renewing of our minds…….that happens in a variety of ways and results in the maturing process – but even Christians have to be proactive if maturing (sanctification) is to happen at all. Sadly, as they age, many who believe do not grow in respect to their salvation, they simply get older.

    All that to say this regarding your insightful article Danny….two Scriptures came to mind as I read ‘Passages’:

    “There is no one righteous, not even one; there is no one who understands; there is no one who seeks God.”
    Romans 3:10-11
    “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?”
    Jeremiah 17:9

    One of several references to conscience in the New Testament is to a conscience that is “seared” or rendered insensitive as though it had been cauterized with a hot iron (1 Timothy 4:1-2). Such a conscience is hardened and calloused, no longer feeling anything. A person with a seared conscience no longer listens to its promptings, and he can sin with abandon, delude himself into thinking all is well with his soul, and treat others insensitively and without compassion.

    Christians strive to keep our consciences clear by obeying God and keeping our relationship with Him in good standing. We do this by the application of His Word, renewing and softening our hearts continually. We consider those whose consciences are weak, treating them with Christian love and compassion.

    I thank God that He gives us a free will to choose – even to chose whether to accept or to reject Him! Rejection leaves us to our own devices; most tend to ‘go with the flow’ of society as it becomes more and more perverse…..and as what used to be called evil is called good. Thankfully, and amazingly, if we accept the fact that God’s Word is true and are experience a spiritual birth by receiving His Son Jesus as our Savior……God gives us a ‘helper’, the Holy Spirit, to help guide us through this life and empower us to do the right thing……to become a fully devoted follower of Christ. That’s why it’s called AMAZING GRACE!!

    • Loved your reference to Holy Scripture my dear brother Mike. I think of Romans 8:28 that tells us that all things (including the bad) ultimately work for the glory of God. God’s word kept me balanced and focused when I encountered injustice and incarnate evil while “on the job”. His word guides me to this day to enter His kingdom through the narrow
      gate. Thanks bro for writing the epilogue on my article.

  4. I don’t think that we come into this world with a good or bad lable stamped on our hearts and brains. I agree with you that we have the ability to act in either a good way or an evil way, but I believe that is largely based on learned behavior. That learned behavior in turn guides our decisions later in life.

    There was a time, back when we were children, when learned behavior was largely controlled by close family. Parents, and perhaps aunts, uncles, and cousins. Maybe with a bit of input from neighborhood kids, also closely controlled. Input by teachers, religious leaders, and a broader pier group came after 5 years of age, but the groundwork was already laid.

    In todays world youngsters have broad input into behavior patterns from childcare workers, to tv, to the internet, and neighborhood examples and not all of that is conducive to making good decisions later in life. Too often those that should be setting a good example (religious leaders, teachers, elected officials, and even parents) act on the evil side of the line and with impunity. We see the results of that manifested in a rise in all types of crime, actions of hate, and a massive breakdown of good behavior.

    • Your correct my friend Vincent. Nature or Nurture seems to be the quotient to define one’s behavior. However, good folks and bad folks as well spring from both origins. I believe it’s the “free will” thing that ultimately has an individual act upon their own selfish interest rather than the unselfish welfare of others. Thanks again for your comment that is appreciated by Gumshoe.