It’s interesting how legality affects morality. As a father I take very seriously the job of raising my kids to know the difference between right and wrong. Why? Because making the right decisions will prolong their longevity and their ability to positively impact humanity. Lately I find myself competing with the message that society is sending. With the legal diversity that exists today their obedience to the ‘laws of the land’ is on somewhat of a sliding scale. Morality and ethics now become more of a relative norm based on how the majority voted. If something is legal, does that make it right? Raising my kids to be responsible law-abiding citizens is suddenly more complicated. Most debate the existence of a set of moral standards, but I believe there is.
If you’ve been in hiding the past twenty-four hours, you’ve likely missed the image above. It immediately went viral. This New York police officer’s actions speak to a set of values and ethics that no person can argue with. The way the world has responded to this random act of kindness not only restores my faith in humanity but it reveals an innate sense of moral and ethical ‘law’ that we implicitly know is right but don’t always follow. This is the message I want my kids to get. To understand. To emulate. And they shouldn’t need a legal reason to do so. Love your neighbor as yourself. It’s not the law. It’s the golden rule.