Local column: Many tears were shed

My heart was broken and many tears were shed, yet again, at the news of so many deaths at the hands of another school shooter. As I look at the photos of the victims, my heart just breaks for their families.

Is it possible that a school shooting could happen here in eastern Idaho? Sadly yes. We ask ourselves, what is the answer? There are many calling for stricter gun control laws. With thousands of gun laws on the books already, perhaps the authorities could enforce existing laws! Guns are the tool, but they are only part of the problem. Again, what is the answer?

I realize that many see the same problems in our society as I do. There are some of life lessons that need to be taught at home. All too often something as simple as respect for others is nonexistent. Our children have no moral compass! Whose moral view do we use? The Judeo-Christioa model would work; it was our moral compass for centuries. You know: virtue, kindness, respect, love for your fellow man and love and respect for God and country.

Bullying in our schools must be quickly identified and dealt with; bullying anyone at any time cannot be tolerated!

In schools, discipline for all intense purposes is nonexistent! Administrators’ and educators’ hands are tied. The U.S. Department of Education recommends that “School districts never use physical restraint for disciplinary purposes.” Discipline must start at home, children must be taught personal responsibility, and that there are real consequences for their actions! Parents and society in general have to stop blaming others and making excuses for bad behavior.

Clearly we need to identify and then get help for those students that suffer from mental illness. This is a very real issue, all too often, too many of our youth fall through the cracks. We need more resource officers so that they can be placed in all our schools.

There is something I find very troubling, as people from all over America and across the world expressed their condolences to those that were involved in the Florida shooting. Especially those that were injured and lost their lives, thoughts and prayers were sent their way. There were those in the national media and Hollywood that about lost their minds. Their faces red with rage!

They said, “Thoughts and prayers, how does that help anyone?” Well, while the government has restricted prayers in public schools, I can assure them that there were thousands of prayers offered by students and facility in that school that day.

“If God’s people will humble themselves and pray, He will heal our land, one nation under God.”

Mike Pence

vice president of the United States

Lewis lives and works in Idaho Falls. He is married with two children. You can reach him at jeffreylewisidf@gmail.com.