April 14, 2009

Columbine: Ten Years Later

USA Today has an interesting retrospective about the terrible school shooting at Columbine High School.

In the aftermath I have heard any number of explanations for why these two monsters acted as they did. A number of them suggested that bullying might have been among the primary reasons for their actions.

That has always troubled me. I don't pretend to have a degree in psychology or to be any sort of expert in the field of mental health. I can understand to an extent how if someone was being bullied that they might want to strike back at the person(s) who were doing this. But this goes far beyond that.

Take a look at this excerpt from the article:

What's now beyond dispute — largely from the killers' journals, which have been released over the past few years, is this: Harris and Klebold killed 13 and wounded 24, but they had hoped to kill thousands.

The pair planned the attacks for more than a year, building 100 bombs and persuading friends to buy them guns. Just after 11 a.m. on April 20, they lugged a pair of duffel bags containing propane-tank bombs into Columbine's crowded cafeteria and another into the kitchen, then stepped outside and waited.

Had the bombs exploded, they'd have killed virtually everyone eating lunch and brought the school's second-story library down atop the cafeteria, police say. Armed with a pistol, a rifle and two sawed-off shotguns, the pair planned to pick off survivors fleeing the carnage.

As a last terrorist act, a pair of gasoline bombs planted in Harris' Honda and Klebold's BMW had been rigged apparently to kill police, rescue teams, journalists and parents who rushed to the school — long after the pair expected they would be dead.

The pair had parked the cars about 100 yards apart in the student lot. The bombs didn't go off.
Read a bit further on and you see that money limited their ability to murder. A lack of finances helped to save lives.

But if we go back to the subject of bullying what bothers me is that I have a hard time accepting that bullying pushed them so far over the edge that they would be willing to murder so many who had nothing to do with them.

They were sick individuals who took a cowards way out and by that I refer to all of their actions that day, from start to finish.

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