The narrative around the 1999 Columbine shooting developed rapidly -- and incorrectly, according to author Dave Cullen, who's featured in a new mini documentary on the incident from the Retro Report carried in the New York Times.
Shooters Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold were bullied and out for revenge, the media reported in the shooting's immediate aftermath. That turned out to be false, the report says:
Almost none of this proved to be true. In fact, as Mr. Cullen notes, Columbine was less a successful school shooting than it was a failed school bombing. Harris, later deemed a psychopath by some psychologists, and Klebold, a suicidal depressive, did not seek out specific groups or individuals. They wanted to blow up the entire place and kill hundreds indiscriminately with a homemade propane bomb. But their device failed to detonate. Only then did they begin using the guns that had unlawfully been supplied to them by others.
CPR's Colorado Matters spoke with Cullen when his book came out in 2009. Listen to that interview here:
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