Littleton Aftermath
Words and Music by Robert Wynne
© 1999

April 22, 1999

It’s a thing that shouldn’t happen, but too often now it will
And it breaks the heart each time you hear of someone’s children killed
Last night I turned on the evening news, and felt my blood go cold
And cried as I watched the story there unfold

The scene was Colorado, in a nice suburban school
Things like this don’t happen there! It goes against the rule
It’s not the inner city, but it happened just the same
And the reporters were all wondering who to blame

And you can say we need more gun control, or armed guards at the schools
Or that we could reach these kids with more counselers and their tools
But somehow I doubt it matters much just who the blame falls on
To a parent whose child won’t be coming home

There were sixteen or maybe more whose lives were just erased
The contributions they might have made can never be replaced
They won’t have the chance to fall in love or spread their wings and fly
And all that we can do is wonder why

What could have we done different? With whom can we find fault?
What can we do to bring this vicious cycle to a halt?
Each expert on the evening news has an viewpoint of his own
And each forgets the families left alone

And you can say we should get rid of all the violence on TV
Or that we need more laws to regulate society
But somehow I doubt it matters much just who the blame falls on
To a parent whose child won’t be coming home

 

I wrote this the morning after the Littleton, CO, school shootings, in an attempt to make some sort of sense of it all. It’s primarily a reaction to the talking heads and pundits who were all saying ‘Well, of course, this happened because…’ and proceding to try and tie this tragedy to whatever their pet theory about “What’s Wrong With The World Today, Especially These Kids” happened to be. The thing the media always loses track of is that these are, at heart, not national tragedies — they’re human tragedies…whatever the societal implications, there are families who are missing their loved ones tonight.

This song never did help me find any answers. It raised a lot of questions though.

I never perform this song.