Being from a rather religious family (both my immediate and extended family), I often get email forwards about various political or religious issues. I usually just roll my eyes and don’t respond. Here’s one of the latest email-forward from my aunt. I’ll spare you the full text – you can read it over at Snopes. (Snopes agrees that Darrell Scott made this speech, but points out the overblown language used to frame the piece and says the speech was never given to Congress.)
Subject: PLEASE READ THOUGHT PROVOKING
Guess our national leaders didn’t expect this, hmm? 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:
* Actually Darrell Scott wasn’t speaking to Congress, he was “one of eight people who presented statements to a small House Subcommittee meeting in an office building; … and didn’t prompt outrage from an unreceptive audience”.
Religious people really love to cast themselves as the role of wise martyr speaking truth to power. I’m surprised they didn’t use this photograph to accompany the email:
“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.
Point #1: No to gun control. Conservatives are going to love this email, and so will the NRA. Of course, this was just a brief detour to talk about the real cause of this tragedy.
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.
The blame for Columbine lies in this government room? The blame lies with people pointing fingers at those who accuse the NRA?
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!
Point #2: We must pay tax dollars for (Christian) religious education, or else these kinds of shootings will happen again.
So, the blame for Columbine lies with those who “outlawed” prayer in schools, preventing children from finding what they need — God.
Of course, the government never outlawed prayer in schools. The government outlawed the practice of teachers (authority figures paid by the general public’s tax dollars) leading students (a captive audience of other people’s children) in prayers to a religion they may or may not believe in. The solution to Columbine is in using tax dollars for religious education — but only as long as it promotes their particular religious view.
I like some of those lines:
“Your laws ignore our deepest needs,”. Our deepest need is to indoctrinate other people’s children? And why do public schools have to allow the teaching of religion? Aren’t there other places to do that, or must “all our deepest needs” be met in schools?
“You’ve stripped away our heritage”. “Heritage” meaning “Christianity”, and “stripped away” meaning “you won’t let us make other people’s children pray to Jesus”.
“You’ve outlawed simple prayer.” Prayer isn’t outlawed in schools.
One of my former neighbors believes in all kinds of new age / wicca moon-goddess beliefs. She’s also a public school teacher. I think we all know what would happen if she started leading other people’s children in prayers. Christians would protest and complain, but it’s totally different if it’s their religion that’s getting taught. Admittedly, those are different situations: my neighbor would lead innocent, impressionable children in prayer to a false idol – the demonic moon-goddess, rather than showing them the way to the One True God.
“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… The real villain lies within our own hearts.
Hmm, I think most of this speech could be repeated by devout Muslims in any historically Islamic territory. A good way to entrench the dominant religion.
“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.
This totally plays into the Christian-conservative myth that prayer was outlawed in schools. By perpetuating this myth, they try to turn “teachers can’t lead students in prayer” into some kind of burden on Christians and the one true God. I especially like how he tries to pretend that politicians were trying to deny students the right to pray in school.
Do what the media did not – – let the nation hear this man’s speech..
Yes, the media did not let the nation hear this man’s speech. The media is against Christians, and are working to suppress the truth. Or, maybe they just didn’t think it was newsworthy. Interesting spin, though. I think I’ll try it with this blog-post: “Do what the media did not — let the nation read my blog post!”
Today, I got an email from another relative where she says that it’s obvious that we needed to overturn the ban on prayer in school. Ugh.