Parents of students shot to death at Colorado’s Columbine High School five years ago were seething at comments made by killer Dylan Klebold’s parents, reports the Rocky Mountain News. Don Fleming, whose daughter Kelly died at the school, was outraged by Tom and Sue Klebold’s comments to New York Times columnist David Brooks. Fleming believes that neither the Klebolds nor the parents of Eric Harris, the other gunman, were engaged in their children’s lives, that they ignored police contacts with their sons, and that they let the two continue to hang out together after they were arrested for breaking into a van. “The Klebolds are totally disgusting,” Fleming said. “They’re saying ‘We really regret missing the warning signs, but we did nothing wrong.’ That’s a contradiction.”
Phyllis and Al Velasquez, whose son Kyle was killed by Klebold, were equally upset. “I vented to Al as I read the whole thing,” Phyllis Velasquez said. “I can’t say a whole lot nice about the Klebolds…The Klebolds are clueless.”
In the Times interview, the Klebolds Klebold said they would never forgive themselves for the warning signs they missed about their son’s mental state, but that they didn’t do anything as parents that they need to apologize for, reports the Denver Post. Tom and Susan Klebold spoke publicly for the first time since the massacre. The Klebolds’ attorney, Gary Lozow, said Tom Klebold offered to go to the school and help negotiate with Dylan on the day of the shootings but nobody returned the call.
The Klebolds talked to Brooks after Brooks cited an April 20 article on slate.com that said Harris and Klebold yearned to become the most prolific mass murderers in history. Susan Klebold is quoted as saying, “Dylan didn’t do this because of the way he was raised. He did it in contradiction to the way he was raised.” She said, “I think he suffered horribly before he died. For not seeing that, I will never forgive myself.” Said Tom Klebold: “He was hopeless. We didn’t realize it until after the end.” The Klebolds believed there was a “toxic” culture of athletes and bullying in the school that may have set Dylan off. They admit they don’t know why the boys gunned down 13 people in the worst high school shooting in U.S. history.
The Slate story, by Dave Cullen, is titled “The Depressive and the Psychopath: At Last We Know Why The Columbine Killers Did It.” Klebold, who is believed to have followed Harris’ lead, is described as depressive and hotheaded but someone who blamed himself for his problems to the point of being suicidal. Harris is called a psychopath – cold, calculating and homicidal. “Psychopaths,” says Dr. Robert Hare, quoted by Cullen, “are not disoriented or out of touch with reality. They are aware of what they are doing.”
FBI agent Dwayne Fuselier, a psychologist and the FBI’s lead investigator at Columbine, was quoted by Cullen as saying Harris was filled with contempt for those around him and was disgusted by the “morons” at school. He had a messianic superiority complex and wanted to punish the human race for its appalling inferiority.