I grew up with the notion that Charlie Manson had his family commit a series of murders in order to start a race war. However (according to a new show about Manson and the murders) the murders were the result of a drug sale heist gone bad. The story goes that Tex Watson and another family member attempted to short-change a black drug dealer. The dealer was more than irritated and Charlie was scared and ended up shooting the guy. However the dealer didn't die. Charlie became even more scared because he thought the drug dealer was connected to the Black Panthers. He then (as this theory goes) has Gary Hinman killed by Bobby Beausoleil and have the killing look like it was done by the Black Panthers– So that the police would go after them and thus the Black Panthers would forget about Manson. Well that plan crashed & burned when Bobby Beausoleil was arrested soon after when he was driving Hinman's car. In order to throw the light back on the Black Panthers and get Beausoleil released, Charlie planned the murders of Sharon Tate & company... Well not Sharon Tate per se, but everyone in that house, whom Manson thought was still inhabited by a music producer who Manson had a grudge against (and Manson had visited the house previously). The Tex Watson & company murders of Sharon Tate & company were the intended to look like the Gary Hinman murder and ultimately a Black Panther associated murder. The problem was the folks that were murdered weren't the intended targets, which triggered the murders of the next night of the Labianca's who lived in a house next to a house Manson was again familiar with. So the Labianca's were murdered and again the purpose of the scene was to make it appear as a Black Panther murder. All this was intended not to start a race war but to put the heat on the Black Panthers and free Bobby Beausoleil. How likely is this scenario as opposed to the starting of the "race war" angle? I gotta admit maybe we gave Manson far too much credit as a supposed mastermind of trying to start a "race war" and maybe it was a case of a drug sale heist gone bad.