By COLlive reporter
New York City Councilman Chaim Deutsch (D-Brooklyn) introduced a resolution into the city council to call upon the New York State Legislature to pass, and the Governor to sign, legislation requiring a moment of silence in all public schools at the beginning of each school day.
“Whereas, Moments of silence are observed at the beginning of school across the country as a secular, non-sectarian way for students (and faculty) to meditate, reflect, set goals, or engage in any other silent, positive activity,” the text of the resolution reads. “Whereas, requiring all public schools to observe a moment of silence has the potential to positively impact students’ academic and behavioral progress; now, therefore, be it..”
Deutsch, who is running for Congress, said that “Data has shown that the moment of silence provides a unique outlet for children and adults. It is a time to focus inward, to relax, and to momentarily get away from troubles and stress. I am excited to bring this resolution forward and urge the State to pass this law.”
A “Moment of Silence” is a brief period of reflection or meditation at the beginning of each school day. Since the mid-1980s, the idea has gained adherents in the U.S. and beyond as many schools, public and private, have begun to start their days with a moment of silence and reflection.
In 1985, the U.S. Supreme Court heard a case about an Alabama law allowing public school teachers to start each day with a moment of silence.
Referencing the case, the Rebbe said it would raise awareness about the existence of a Supreme Being – “the authority behind our society’s most basic laws. A truly civilized society begins with giving children the opportunity to think about ‘an Eye that sees and Ear that hears’,” the Rebbe said.
Rabbi Shmuel Butman, Director of the Lubavitch Youth Organization, said: “We strongly applaud the efforts of Councilman Deutsch as this is something the Lubavitcher Rebbe spoke about many times. It will give all individuals regardless of race, religion, color or cread a chance to reflect on what is good and noble and make this world a better place.”
David Mandel, CEO of OHEL Children’s Home and Family Services, said, “Legislation to encourage students to have a moment of silence comes at a good time. Stress and anxiety have permeated our lives at every age. Not only caused by the advent of social media but encompassing life as we know it is faster more intense with greater challenges albeit potentially more rewarding. A moment of silence is a good easy tool to teach youngsters at all ages that they can set their own pace without feeling pressured to do it all.”
VIDEO: Kids Explain how a ‘Moment of Silence’ is helpful