Monday, June 06, 2011

Pastor’s son murders mother of 10

Toby Stangel went on a shooting spree in Hawaii, killing a mother of 10 and wounding several others. By all accounts, the shootings were the random acts of a troubled youth. Stangel’s father is the pastor of North Shore Christian Fellowship. Stangel grew up in the church but always had problems.

Toby Stangel was charged Saturday night with murder, seven counts of attempted murder and firearms charges and was being held in lieu of $5 million bail after he allegedly killed a mother of 10 and wounded two others in a 17-minute shooting spree that stretched from Kaimuki to Aiea.

The church has openly banded together to support the victims and to help deal with the grief of this horrendous tragedy. That’s all good, and I commend them for rising to the occasion, but I have to ask – where was the magic Christian morality in all this? Stangel is a Christian. He presumably knew the difference between right and wrong (at least in Christian terms). I guess knowing the bible does not make one moral.

Before you make nasty comments, please keep in mind that I know my statement is crazy. I’m just poking the bear with a big pointed stick because the bear needs to be poked. Reading the bible and being a Christian do not make us moral. It’s the actions we take that create a record of our behavior. In Stangel’s case, his murder spree has little to do with his faith and more to do with his upbringing and values (or mental issues).

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