Ed Note: This essay was written by Howie Silbiger just after the Columbine School Massacre in 1999. It is very sad that in 2018 it is still relevant.
I could have been a school shooter. It’s chilling that I can say that and be serious about it, but it’s true. As a teen, I fit the profile. I was somewhat of a loner, bullied at school and had access to a friend’s father’s hunting rifle. If my psyche was different, if I was a little mentally off, it is very possible that you may have read about me instead of Dylan Kleobold and Eric Harris. I am a Kippah wearing Jew. It is part of my identity, I do not compromise on my religion, I never have and throughout middle and high school I paid the price.
I remember the torture clearly, nearly every instance and all of my tormentor’s names. I’m told that someone bullied a lot does that, remembers it. The beatings started in grade 7. First it started with taunts, but when I heard “Fucking Jew” screamed at me, I braced myself for the fist. Read more