Now that Charles Manson, one of the most infamous cult leaders of all time, has died, Twitter users are having some pretty weird reactions. People are tweeting "RIP Charles Manson" — something you may have noticed if you checked out what was trending over the weekend. But before you freak out, thinking that thousands of people are actually sad that someone like Manson is dead, don't. It's just a case of mistaken identity.
On Sunday, Manson died at age 83 after having served 46 years of a life sentence across several California prisons. In 1969, his followers, who were known as the Mansion Family, carried out murders that included victims like actor Sharon Tate, which led to Manson being convicted of first-degree murder for the deaths of seven people. Last week, Manson was hospitalized and later died of natural causes.
And as Mashable pointed out, once the news broke, the "RIP" tweets started pouring in — a pretty strange sight to see when you consider how many deaths this man was responsible for. But, after scrolling through a few of them, the cause of these tweets is clear: These people actually think that Marilyn Manson, the musician, is dead, not Charles Manson, the cult leader.
First, there are those who seem to be genuinely mourning the singer (who, by the way, is still kicking at the ripe old age of 48):
It's hard to tell if all of the tweets are genuine or if some might be joking about the fact that other people actually tweeted "RIP Charles Manson." Just look at the one below that may or may not be sarcastic. But if this was genuine? Well, that's rough. Being that Manson was in prison in the '90s, there's a good chance he didn't have time to record an album. But hey, who knows — maybe keeping Manson off the Billboard charts did change music forever. We'll never know.
Of course, there are also people who are reacting to people tweeting RIP, who tend to fall into two categories: Those who realize the mistake that's being made, and those who are just shaking their head at the thought that people would actually wish that a cult leader gets to rest in peace. The blinking guy meme has never felt so appropriate.
Yet another category? Those who are actually sending "RIP Charles Manson" tweets to the true recipient, which is honestly just as hard to understand as the tweets that are meant to be about Marilyn. It's hard to grasp how someone could consider Manson "wise but misunderstood", but it happens.
And if you need a little mental cleansing after those tweets, there's also this, the best tweet of them all — an obviously sarcastic post accompanied by a photo of Russell Brand, because why not? Only the good die young, apparently.
There is one small connection between the two unrelated Mansons — Marilyn, who was born Brian Hugh Warner, chose his stage name as a combination of Charles' last name and Marilyn Monroe's first name. There's no word on how Marilyn himself feels about the confusion, although he did tweet a link to his song, "Sick City," along with Charles' Life Magazine cover from 1969.
Seeing Twitter react to Manson's death is truly a roller coaster from start to finish, but hopefully, some people learned to tell the difference between the two men.
Just so we're clear: Charles is dead, Marilyn is not. Charles was a cult leader, Marilyn is a musician. Two very different people — a fact that Marilyn would probably be really glad everyone kept in mind, even if he does share Charles' name.