Guest Post from Coach Dale Brown
Darrell Scott, the father of Rachel Scott, a victim of the Columbine High School shootings in Littleton, Colorado, in 1999 was invited to address the House Judiciary Committee’s sub-committee. What he said to our national leaders during this session of Congress was painfully truthful.
Since the dawn of creation there has been both good and 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.
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 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!
Now, another mass murder occurs in our country and the question is: “Will this change the political culture in Washington to implement tougher gun control?” We have heard all the rhetoric before and everyone is sick of it. Now, it is time to do something in the area of gun control and mental health. One out of every five children in the USA suffers with some form of mental illness. It is time for a meaningful nation-wide conversation about mental illness.
There must be a federal ban on military-style assault weapons (AR-15) and the large ammunition magazines. We can no longer let the powerful gun lobbyists dictate what should be done. This now is the 13th mass murder in America this year. Total firearms murders in the United States in 2011 was 8,583. This year it is a staggering 9,146 compared to 11 in Japan, 30 in Australia, 35 in France and 41 in England and Wales, all which have strict gun control laws.
Maybe another question we should all ask ourselves: “Do these violent video games and violent movies contribute to the violence in our great country?”
President Obama the other night in Newtown, Connecticut, strongly stated: “We cannot tolerate this anymore.” It is easy to say, what can little old me do to make a difference? Nobody makes a greater mistake than he who did nothing because he thought he could only do a little. That is exactly when apathy and indifference take over and we lose control of our own destiny. We can’t look to others to do it for us; we must be the catalyst for change. The idea of saviors has been built into our entire modern culture. We have learned to look to stars, politicians and leaders, thus surrendering our own strength, demeaning our own ability and causing us not to act.
Great social transformation such as the end of slavery, women’s and civil right’s movements and the end of colonial rule all began with public awareness and engagement. Political leaders followed rather then led. A few courageous and committed people brought about change. Gandhi’s most profound statement is so very true: “We must be the change we wish to see.”
Over one hundred fifty years ago (1857), British historian Thomas Macaulay made this dire prediction for America: “Your republic will be as fearfully plundered and laid waste by barbarians in the 20th century as the Roman Empire in the 5th century; with this difference, that the Huns and Vandals that ravaged the Roman Empire came from without, and that your Huns and Vandals will have been engendered within your own country, by your own institutions.”
I started this plea to you by asking, “What are you doing to change the system?” and I conclude it with asking you, “What will you NOW do to change the system?” We have lost our moral compass and must wake up before we lose everything.
GOD BLESS AMERICA BUT WAKE UP AMERICA BEFORE IT IS TOO LATE.