Columbine a Year Later

April 20, 2000

When I started writing my radio commentary two years ago, it turns out that my first commentary was on "Kids Killing Kids." Little did I know that a year later, Columbine would be in the news.

Not so long ago the biggest problem kids faced was getting a flat tire on their bikes or having a mean teacher assign homework over the weekend. How times have changed. Who would have guessed that one of the perennial stories would be kids killing kids? They were already big stories in 1998 and 1999. Columbine merely magnified the attention.

Not so long ago when we did talk about kids killing kids it was in an urban setting. Gangland battles between the Bloods and the Crips reminded us that life in the inner city was hard and ruthless. But the latest battlegrounds have not been Watts, the Bronx, or Cabrini-Green. Over the last few years these violent confrontations have taken place in idyllic towns with names like Pearl, Mississippi or Paducah, Kentucky or Jonesboro, Arkansas or Littleton, Colorado.

It's now one year later from Columbine and there are still many theories. Earlier this week I even quoted from Colorado school board member Patti Johnson. There is perhaps no one single answer. But we should be concerned that our children listen to music with violent lyrics. We should be concerned that our children see thousands of TV murders. We should be concerned that they play violent computer games. And we should be concerned that state officials continue to find ways to pull God from the schools and prayer from the classroom.

School shootings have been in the news for the last few years, but Columbine was a wake up call. We need to rethink how we raise kids and what we allow them to hear and see.

I'm Kerby Anderson of Probe Ministries, and that's my opinion.