Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Suffer The Little Children

Because guns don't kill people.  Lack of access to mental health services don't kill people.  America's fascination and worship of violence doesn't kill people.  No, it is the lack of school-sponsored prayer that kills people.

The response to the Newtown shooting, in which 26 people were killed on school property, 20 of them children, was as predictable as it was infuriating:

You know the question’s gonna come up, where was God?” he said. “I thought God cared about the little children, God protected the little children. Where was God when all this went down? And here’s the bottom line: God is not gonna go where he’s not wanted.

Now we have spent, since 1962, this, we’re 50 years into this now, we have spent 50 years telling God to get lost. Telling God, we do not want you in our schools, we don’t want to pray to you in our schools, we don’t want to pray to you before football games, we don’t want to pray to you at graduation, we don’t want anyone talking about you in a graduation speech.

We’ve kicked God out of our public school system. And I think God would say to us, "Hey I’ll be glad to protect your children, but you’ve gotta invite me back into your world first. I’m not gonna go where I’m not wanted. I am a gentleman."

And then, Mike Huckabee weighs in:

And then I saw this gem floating around on several of my friends' Facebook status updates:


Guess our national leaders didn't expect this. On Thursday, Darrell Scott, the father of Rachel Scott, a victim of the Columbine High School shootings in Littleton, Colorado, was invited to address the House Judiciary Committee's subcommittee. What he said to our national leaders during this special session of Congress was painfully truthful.

They were not prepared for what he was to say, nor was it received well. It needs to be heard by every parent, every teacher, every politician, every sociologist, every psychologist, and every so-called expert! These courageous words spoken by Darrell Scott are powerful, penetrating, and deeply personal. There is no doubt that God sent this man as a voice crying in the wilderness.. The following is a portion of the transcript:

"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!"

             -Darrell Scott

The screed attempts to make the point once again that guns aren't to blame for the tragedy, lack of government authorized prayer in schools is the real villain here.

It always amazes me how people presume to know the mind of God, and how, in 100% of the cases, God happens to agree with whatever pet cause that person had in mind.  Whether it's lack of school prayer, gay marriage, or abortion, God had those beautiful children gunned down to teach the rest of us a lesson.  The same God who is quite capable of parting seas, inscribing tablets of stone with clearly written rules, having burning bushes talk, is now incapable of writing notes, and instead must resort to the crude murder of children so that the rest of us must hazily try to decipher his message.  That is quite the image of God that some people have.

But to double down on the wrongness, prayer doesn't seem to help shield locations from falling victim to a massacre.  Religion in their school did not prevent six Amish girls from being shot by a madman.  Being an actual place of worship did not prevent another madman from shooting up a Sikh temple, killing another six people.  Children and adults are already allowed to pray in schools, so why would school-sposored prayer have worked in this instance?

As Emily noted in her excellent post yesterday, there will probably not be one solution to this problem, it will almost certainly have to be a multi-pronged approach.  But people who are so eager to presume to know God's mind in the wake of a tragedy are not part of the solution, they are part of the problem.


  1. I think it's easier. I think just passing this off as "evil" or "because of something I already don't like" is a lot easier than looking it right in the face and learning about it.

    I keep crying when I listen to news or analysis of it, and the Hubby told me not to listen anymore. Which is valid, but I want to understand what should happen next, and that takes confronting the actual facts of why these shootings happen, and at what specific points we can legislate to reduce the possibility of them happening again.

    If God really wanted us to understand a specific agenda, He sure sent mixed messages and poor translators in this case.

  2. The Christian god is able to be so so clear, and so specific when he wants to send a message, yet in this case, somehow a bunch of different people can come up with a bunch of different reasons. Also the Christian god was pretty god about telling people beforehand exactly what he was going to do, and why. Ignore him at your peril (like the Pharoah). Yet in this case? And the New Testament doesn't even reach to this. I should be surprised at the depths that people allow themselves to sink to just to get face time and move their agenda forward, but I'm not anymore.