Monday, December 16, 2013

Playing the Blame Game After 18-Year-Old Shoots Student and Self at Colorado School

Almost exactly one year to the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, we get another one, this time at Arapahoe High School in Colorado.

It was a teenager who went off the deep end this time: 18-year-old Karl Halverson Pierson, who had allegedly just been kicked off the debate team. Because of that, he entered his high school armed with a shotgun, a machete and Molotov cocktails, ultimately putting 17-year-old Claire Davis into a coma and killing himself.

It’s sick and pointless and he’s probably in hell now. I don’t like saying that, but it’s probably true nonetheless. Regardless of whether this kid was or wasn’t a part of a Christian family, he behaved in a manner completely antithetical to Christian values that put him in direct opposition to the Christian God.

So don’t try blaming Christianity in this tragedy. God did not tell Pierson to do what he did.

Yet considering how this comes in the wake of too many other acts of violence committed by too many young people armed with guns, knives, bombs or merely their fists (as in the case of the knockout game sweeping the country… and yes, people have died because of it), I think I’m more than justified in asking…

What in the world is wrong with our culture!

Last month, I overheard a fascinating conversation by two retirees. The man was talking about his past in Catholic school, where he was beaten up by nuns on numerous occasions.

His conclusion? He flat-out stated that he didn’t condone the abuse whatsoever, but he learned how to handle his feelings through the experience… something he noted young people today don’t understand: “They don’t know how to handle anything. If somebody picks on them, they grab a gun, go into school and shoot it up or something.”

Now, admittedly, children don’t always do exactly that. Statistically speaking, we don’t have that many school shootings (though even one is more than enough). Yet the man is completely correct in noting the difference between his childhood and childhood today. The levels of kids and young adults who commit suicide or “have” to be put on drugs or turn to life of crime is exceedingly high.

What else can we conclude but that our youth aren’t learning to cope with life!

Again, you can’t blame the Christian God. Not when schools are going out of their way to avoid mentioning him. And don’t try blaming guns either… Back in the retiree’s day, gun ownership levels were much higher and school shootings were much, much, much lower.

So sure, let’s play the blame game when there’s plenty of blame to go around. But if we’re going to start pointing fingers, let’s at least do it right so we can avoid even more school shootings.

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