What Is To Blame?
“Here I bow my head to pray
But not to MY GOD, I am ashamed to say
For He is not sanctioned by the state
So some other prayer I must make.
It all started out so well and good
‘Put God Back In School’ we said we would
But then the society around us changed
The ‘official’ God now has a different name.
We were warned, but we couldn’t wait
To abolish the separation of church and state
Because the majority was on our side
Our religion was worshiped far and wide.
But the world grew smaller as years went by
And others moved in as we began to cry.
‘They don’t believe the same as we do!’
Suddenly, our decision we began to rue.
Politicians in office now had a different God.
They vowed to make us follow Him, they would.
And since the state now decides our belief
We can blame only ourselves for our grief.
So now I bow my head to pray
And wish I could go back to that day
When we didn’t know what we would lose
And I could worship the God I choose.”
There is an email that has been circulating throughout the internet since the shootings that took place at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newton, CT, 7 days ago. Although it appears that this speech, made by Darrell Scott, the father of Rachel Joy Scott — a student killed in the 1999 shootings at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado, was just given recently before the Senate Subcommittee on Crime, it was, in fact, given on May 27, 1999, just a few short months after he lost his daughter. However, his words are just as significant and impactful today, as they were 13 years ago, and they are well worth hearing and remembering, despite the fact that his words, and the words of other Columbine parents, did not receive very much media coverage, at the time!
Since that time, and spurred on in part by writings in the notebooks and diaries left behind by his daughter, Mr. Scott — the son of an Episcopalian minister (though he himself is adamantly non-denominational), quit his job, set up a non-profit organization called The Columbine Redemption, and embarked on a grueling schedule of speaking engagements all across the United States to spread this message. The following is a portion of the transcript of his address in Washington.
“Since the dawn of creation there has been both good & evil in the hearts of men and women. We all contain the seeds of kindness or the seeds of violence. The death of my wonderful daughter, Rachel Joy Scott, and the deaths of that heroic teacher, and the other eleven children who died must not be in vain. Their blood cries out for answers.
“The first recorded act of violence was when Cain slew his brother Abel out in the field. The villain was not the club he used.. Neither was it the NCA, the National Club Association. The true killer was Cain, and the reason for the murder could only be found in Cain’s heart.
“In the days that followed the Columbine tragedy, I was amazed at how quickly fingers began to be pointed at groups such as the NRA. I am not a member of the NRA. I am not a hunter. I do not even own a gun. I am not here to represent or defend the NRA – because I don’t believe that they are responsible for my daughter’s death. Therefore I do not believe that they need to be defended. If I believed they had anything to do with Rachel’s murder I would be their strongest opponent
I am here today to declare that Columbine was not just a tragedy — it was a spiritual event that should be forcing us to look at where the real blame lies! Much of the blame lies here in this room. Much of the blame lies behind the pointing fingers of the accusers themselves. I wrote a poem just four nights ago that expresses my feelings best.
Your laws ignore our deepest needs,
Your words are empty air.
You’ve stripped away our heritage,
You’ve outlawed simple prayer.
Now gunshots fill our classrooms,
And precious children die.
You seek for answers everywhere,
And ask the question “Why?”
You regulate restrictive laws,
Through legislative creed.
And yet you fail to understand,
That God is what we need!
“Men and women are three-part beings. We all consist of body, mind, and spirit. When we refuse to acknowledge a third part of our make-up, we create a void that allows evil, prejudice, and hatred to rush in and wreak havoc. Spiritual presences were present within our educational systems for most of our nation’s history. Many of our major colleges began as theological seminaries. This is a historical fact. What has happened to us as a nation? We have refused to honor God, and in so doing, we open the doors to hatred and violence. And when something as terrible as Columbine’s tragedy occurs — politicians immediately look for a scapegoat such as the NRA. They immediately seek to pass more restrictive laws that contribute to erode away our personal and private liberties. We do not need more restrictive laws. Eric and Dylan would not have been stopped by metal detectors. No amount of gun laws can stop someone who spends months planning this type of massacre. The real villain lies within our own hearts.
“As my son Craig lay under that table in the school library and saw his two friends murdered before his very eyes, he did not hesitate to pray in school. I defy any law or politician to deny him that right! I challenge every young person in America , and around the world, to realize that on April 20, 1999, at Columbine High School prayer was brought back to our schools. Do not let the many prayers offered by those students be in vain. Dare to move into the new millennium with a sacred disregard for legislation that violates your God-given right to communicate with Him. To those of you who would point your finger at the NRA — I give to you a sincere challenge.. Dare to examine your own heart before casting the first stone!
My daughter’s death will not be in vain! The young people of this country will not allow that to happen!”
Rachel Joy Scott
August 5, 1981 to April 20, 1999
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, shall guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, let your mind dwell on these things.
During this most blessed season of the year, please remember the millions of our brothers and sisters who continue to suffer from the effects of Superstorm Sandy. Give as much as you can, as often as you can to the following organizations. Your gift might just mean a family who has lost everything might just have something to smile about this Christmas!
Staten Island Gift Cards For Relief
For information, visit
The Robin Hood Relief Fund
“121212” The Concert For Sandy Relief
Call 1-855-465- HELP (4357)
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