A Letter From 1999
Introduction to the Letter
Although this topic is not specifically biblical, I think you will see that it deals with matters that are solidly Bible based. If I offend, I am sorry – for you.
This time I am attaching a copy of a letter I wrote in 1999 shortly after the school shootings in Colorado as a reaction/response to some things said in the aftermath. I did not intend it at that time as a political statement, nor do I now. It would not have mattered who occupied the Oval Office at that point. The matters I covered and the things I noted in the (unmailed) letter are completely non-partisan.
I am sure the President was partially right in the statement with which I deal in this missive. However, to put everybody in the same boat is a cruise I refuse to take. The actions of Harris and Klebold represent everything I have dedicated my life to opposing.
Well, just read the letter and draw your own conclusions.
Remember this – we may not be able to do everything, but we can do something.
May 23, 1999
Dear President Clinton:
After the shootings at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado, you gave a speech in which a statement was made to the effect that we are ‘…all to blame…’ for this tragedy. Mr. President, I find that I must disagree with this sentiment. Among the dead in this catastrophe was the granddaughter of a good friend whose service in the Christian ministry is longer and more extensive than mine. Surely this godly man and his good wife are in no way responsible for their own loss in this matter.
Do not blame me. It is not my fault. All my adult life has been spent teaching against violence and for the respect of the law. (It is my understanding that Misters Harris and Klebold broke at least 17 gun laws besides all the other rules against assault and murder.) The law is for the lawless, but does not restrain them. It can only fix a penalty.
For 32 years the church I pastor has opened its doors on a regular basis at least three times a week. During my ministry I have knocked on thousands of doors inviting people to church and speaking to them about the need of their souls. I have passed out thousands of pieces of Christian literature and somewhere along the line lost count of the number of home Bible studies I have conducted. We have run bus, van and personal cars to pick up children and adults who often decide not to come tonight, failed to get ready or went somewhere else without notifying us. We have traveled as much as 35 miles one way to pick up a child for Sunday school.
Don’t blame me. From my pulpit and others I have repeatedly taught compassion, love, forgiveness and yielding to the rights and needs of others. As the apostle Paul instructed Timothy, I have tried to set an example of holiness, righteousness, modesty of dress, self-control and purity for the church and community. I have preached against hatred, self-indulgence, immorality, lying and murder. I have done what I can to foster an atmosphere of godliness and dedication to do right. There are ministers from this church in six states preaching the same message.
Don’t blame me. I have preached in 3 foreign countries at my own expense and been involved in the founding of several other churches. I have spearheaded the contribution of thousands of dollars for missions each year. For over two decades I have been involved in the running of summer youth camps. The shootings are not my fault.
Don’t blame me. Over the years I have been involved in helping drug abusers, gang members and alcoholics turn their lives around and become productive citizens. I am not contributing to the atmosphere of moral decay and loosened standards. I grew up during the 1950’s and 1960’s without ever experimenting with drugs, becoming involved in the so-called sexual revolution or rising up against those who were in authority. Don’t blame me. I am not and never have abetted the excesses of violence or the knee jerk restriction of the law abiding.
Don’t blame me. If people will not change their lives, at least I have done what I could to try to point them toward a better way of living. Over ten thousand times I have stood to encourage and invite people from all levels of society, from coast to coast, to repent of their sins, be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of those sins and to get the power of God in their lives by receiving the baptism of the Holy Ghost.
Mr. President I appreciate the fact that you are facing a problem in this country. But don’t blame me. It is not my fault. I am not part of the problem. I am part of the solution, if people will but listen.
Roy L. Moss