What does the tragic shooting at the Marjory Stoneman High School in Parkland, Fla., on Feb. 14, 2018 mean for Connecticut? After Connecticut suffered the tragedy of the Sandy Hook school shooting in Newtown on Dec. 14, 2012, Connecticut tightened up its gun control laws to the tightest among the 50 states. The recommendation to ban bump stocks that can turn a semi-automatic weapon into an automatic weapon is welcome. To require more people to have background checks is also welcome. But this is not what the Parkland School shooting means for Connecticut.
We should not forget that criminals do not follow the law. That is why they are criminals. Law abiding citizens obey the law. Law abiding citizens do not shoot fellow citizens.
So here we are in Connecticut, the home of the Sandy Hook shooting, and have been told by our leading press and political leaders that the Parkland shooting is about guns. It is actually not about guns but rather about values. We do not teach morals and ethics in school anymore.
I know that when I have played video games such as Call of Duty in the past, I would never have considered mowing down my fellow citizens as if they were wheat! How can young people think that they should not respect the life of other people? The teaching of morals and ethics has been pushed out of our schools. That has been a mistake. Secular humanism is an empty vessel.
Let’s consider Facebook and Apple. Both have vision statements for their companies. Both vision statements are worthless. Both companies have no morals or ethics. Apple downloaded a virus onto my phone so that the virus/update would slow my phone down, in the hope that I would buy one of their newer phones. Do unto others as you would have done unto you! That is the Golden Rule.
The Golden Rule is more important than man-made laws. It is the rule that you live by every day at work, school and in society. Yet we don’t teach it enough. It is my understanding that Facebook had a privacy page for privacy settings for your account, but the privacy page did not actually do anything. Facebook still collected your data and sold it.
It appears Facebook would sell the data on their own mothers and fathers, even if they didn’t want Facebook to. Do unto others as you would have done unto you. In my opinion the entire company of Facebook like Apple lacks any morals and ethics. And that is where we end up when we do not teach morals and ethics. Should we just be impressed with their resumes and money?
And the most important lesson we do not each in school: the value of life! We do not teach that you must be grateful for every day that we have as none has been promised to us. We must teach the value of the life of your fellow student. We must teach that the life of your teacher and of the custodian and everybody else in school is great.
The word in the street is that the football players at Marjory Stoneman High School were not even allowed to pray before a game; to pray for the gift of being on the team and to be with their teammates; and, to pray for the opportunity to participate in the game with another team. When we prevent students from showing their appreciation for each other and their contributions and teamwork, we lose love for each other. As a deacon in a Connecticut church suggested after the Parkland shooting: petition for prayer.
So yes, the Golden Rule of doing unto others as you would have done unto you should be taught. Respect for your life and the life of others should also be taught. And there should be prayer allowed in school. That is what the Parkland school shooting means for Connecticut.
Peter Thalheim is a Republican candidate for governor.