Free to believe what you want

Published 12:00 am Sunday, December 5, 2004

Dear God:

Why didn’t you save the school children at ?. . Moses Lake, Washington 2/2/96, Bethel, Alaska 2/19/97, Pearl, Mississippi 10/1/97, West Paducah, Kentucky 12/1/97, Stamps, Arkansas 12/15/97, Jonesboro, Arkansas 3/24/98, Edinboro, Pennsylvania 4/24/98, Fayetteville, Tennessee 5/19/98, Springfield, Oregon 5/21/98?

Richmond, Virginia 6/15/98, Littleton, Colorado 4/20/99, Taber, Alberta, Canada 5/28/99

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Conyers, Georgia 5/20/99, Deming, New Mexico 11/19/99, Fort Gibson, Oklahoma

12/6/99, Santee, California 3/5/01, and El Cajon, California 3/22/01?, Sincerely,

Concerned Student

Reply: Dear concerned student, I am not allowed in schools. Gee, God, how come, when did this get started? .Let’s see, I think it started when Madeline Murray O’Hare complained she didn’t want any prayer in our schools. And we said OK?. Yes you did, and then someone said you better not read the Bible in school, the book that says things like &uot;thou shalt not kill, thou shalt not steal, and love your neighbors as yourself. And we said, OK. Yes you did.

And Dr. Benjamin Spock said we shouldn’t spank our children when they misbehave because their little personalities would be warped and we might damage their self-esteem.

And we said an expert should know what he’s talking about so we won’t spank them anymore. Then someone said teachers and principals better not discipline our children when they misbehave.

And the school administrators said no faculty member in this school better touch a student when they misbehave because we don’t want any bad publicity, and we surely don’t want to be sued. And we accepted their reasoning.

Then someone said, let’s let our daughters have abortions if they want, and they won’t even have to tell their parents. And we said, that’s a grand idea. Then some wise school board member said, since boys will be boys and they’re going to do it anyway, let’s give our sons all the condoms they want, so they can have all the fun they desire, and we won’t have to tell their parents they got them at school. And we said, that’s another great idea…

Then some of our top elected officials said it doesn’t matter what we do in private as long as we do our jobs. And we said, it doesn’t matter what anybody, including the President, does in private as long as we have jobs and the economy is good. And someone else took that idea a step further and published pictures of nude children, and then stepped further still by making them available on the Internet. And we said, everyone’s entitled to free speech.

And the entertainment industry said let’s make TV shows and movies that promote profanity, violence and illicit sex… And let’s record music that encourages rape, drugs, murder, suicide, and satanic themes. And we said, it’s

just entertainment and it has no adverse effect and nobody takes it seriously anyway, so go right ahead…

Now we’re asking ourselves why our children have no conscience, why they don’t know right from wrong, and why it doesn’t bother them to kill strangers, classmates or even themselves. Undoubtedly, if we thought about it long and hard enough, we could figure it out. Do you think it has anything to do with that old saw…WE REAP WHAT WE SOW?

Free to believe what we want. Kinda catchy, don’t you think?

Robert Pocklington lives in Suffolk and is a regular News-Herald columnist. He can be reached at