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Posts Tagged ‘Gun Rights’

Self-Defense then, Legally Sanctioned Justifiable Murder NOW!

Thank you Marc Fiore for the great satirical video; keep them coming!

After the horrendous decision of the jury in the Zimmerman case, the light has been shined on the law that allows this kind of legally sanctioned mis-interpretation of self-defense. This tainted interpretation of self-defense has allowed a jury to use their underlying predisposition of a young black youth to completely obliterate their common sense and proper legal instructions for self-defense.

In Florida, the Stand Your Ground law (SYG) has allowed for and even encouraged/protected unwarranted vigilante behavior of its citizenry. Stand Your Ground law has been effect in Florida for 5 years and since that time the rate of justifiable homicides in Florida tripled; How are you liking that Floridians? This sad state of affairs should make all law-abiding Americans take pause and realize that a reversal is in order on this approach to self-defense.

The Stand Your Ground law essentially gives every citizen the right to kill based a perceived level of threat of bodily harm or possible death regardless of how unfounded that perception is to the reality of the situation. In fact, if a person invokes the SYG law in their defense then they are actually protected against civil law suits. Can you think how America would feel if O. J. Simpson had used SYG as a defense; was found not guilty (as he did in reality); and then was protected from any civil prosecution?

Before the “Stand Your Ground (SYG)” law was implemented in Florida the provisions for and instructions to jurors on self-defense were vastly different. A typical judge in Florida would inform the jury that the following conditions had to be met in order for the defendant to qualify for self-defense in the state of Florida.

“The defendant cannot justify the use of force likely to cause death or great bodily harm unless he uses every reasonable means within his power and consistent with his own safety to avoid the danger before resorting to that force. The fact that the defendant was wrongfully attacked cannot justify his/her use of force likely to cause death or great bodily harm, if by retreating, he/she could have avoided using that force.”

This was, and should have continued to have been, the standard by which  a law-abiding citizen could invoke a self-defense plea in a civilized society. The fact that Florida has ventured so far from this commonsense approach to self-defense (which has been a part of the American judicial system for many hundreds of years) is an abomination to justice and the health of The Social Compact.

That was the provisions for self-defense in Florida and in all states in America, but in came the Koch brothers money, the American Legislative Exchange Council(ALEC), and the irresponsible Republican and Democratic legislators of Florida and now they have the “Stand Your Ground” law in Florida. This law takes an ominous and irresponsible turn on self-defense and now gives legal cover for justified offense; aka murder. It turns or gives cover for John Q. Public to go from a law-abiding citizen who calls upon police to handle a perceived criminal situation and turns them into a legalized vigilante with a license to kill with the added caveat of extra protections from civil liability’

Today, a Florida judge (as was the case in the Zimmerman trail) currently instructs jurors that the following minimalist conditions need only apply in court as a justifiable reason to take the life of another Floridian:

“If the defendant was not engaged in an unlawful activity and was attacked in any place where he/she has a right to be; the defendant has no duty to retreat and has the right to stand his/her ground and force with force including deadly force; if he/she reasonably believes that it was necessary to do so to prevent great bodily harm or death to himself or another, or to prevent the commission of a forcible felony.” Read more…

Rethink gun laws, NOW!

ar-151

AR 15 is not needed by John Q. Public

The carnage and incomprehensible violence that happened in Connecticut shocked the nation and brought the topic of gun control to the nation’s attention. The correlation between the senseless slaughter of those beautiful elementary kids and guns are a natural response by all that have a moral foundation in peace and love. In reflection of the tragedy, the collective WE all demanded that “assault weapons” be banned and called for the re-institution of the loophole riddled assault weapons ban.

The CT shootings led to everyone shouting from the rooftops about the need to regulate or even outlaw certain “assault weapons” as a cure to the evil that happened at Sandy Hook. The event actually left me quite numb and to be honest, I am still quite numb in many ways about that inhuman mass shooting. With that being said, I dare to say that no matter how tragic that shooting is the reality is that it has very little to do with just gun ownership. It has to do with a lack of gun regulations in terms of nozzle velocity, firing capacity  and gun insurance.

I assert that the proponents of gun laws are taking the wrong stance. The arguable connection between the horrible event at Sandy Hook and “assault weapons” only feeds the argument of those on the gun-side that contend that “the way to stop a bad guy with a gun is with a good guy with a gun”. The connection between guns and the horrific mass shooting is as contaminating as the belief that “the answer to gun violence is more guns”; both are wrong-headed.

The two opposing positions are equally poisoning the topic of gun regulations by posturing, hyperbole, division, and political demagoguery. Appealing to the other sides sense of good morality on the subject of guns will only harden their stance in opposition of yours.  The problem lies in the fact that we naturally oppose that which we do not already agree with and this is a matter of human nature.

As Stanford University psychologist Leon stated A MAN WITH A CONVICTION is a hard man to change. Tell him you disagree and he turns away. Show him facts or figures and he questions your sources. Such is the reaction of those who argue their unrestricted right to guns. Appeal to logic and he fails to see your point.” Such is the reaction of those who argue their unrestricted gun rights. One can relate this to the theory of “fight or fleet”; this holds true with predators and data. Relating mass shootings to the need for gun control weakens the argument somewhat. America needs to look at gun regulation/control at the level of what is at the bare minimum level of responsibility that all gun owners should accept. Read more…

Taking a real look at the Second Amendment of the Constitution of the United States

Second Amendment

The right to bear arms?

As passed by the Congress: “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” As ratified by the States and authenticated by Thomas Jefferson, Secretary of State.

When looking at the Second Amendment, in its totality, one can get only one understanding from it; that is if one has an understanding of constitutional history. It has essentially has two parts that make up its whole. I find it amazing that most people, especially those I call the “gun-stupid”, only choose to read and adopt the second part of the Second Amendment. Its intent is utterly clear when one reads the entirety of the Second Amendment in conjunction with the Federalist Papers. The Federalist Papers are the written text explaining the arguments for and against the constitution thereby seeking to persuade the states to ratify the Constitution. See; http://tinyw.in/y3IV. The contention that surrounded the Second Amendment was not based on an argument over the rights of people to have arms; it had/has its roots in a disagreement over whether or not this nation would have a standing army or not.

Based on my interpretation of the Second Amendment and the Federalist Papers (29), I get the following meaning from it “In order to have a well regulated militia in the defense of the United States (or states at that time) the rights of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed”.  Now this understanding of the 2nd Amendment is a far cry from what the gun-stupid would argue today. If you really want to get a better understanding of what the Founding Fathers meant you will really have to read the Federalist papers, but if you just want a quick rundown here it goes.

The Founding Fathers argued heavily about the whether America should establish of an army during times of peace and at the end of their debate it was settled, that America would not have a standing army during times of peace. This decision would remain as policy until the early 20th century when Congress broke from the original intent of the Founding Fathers and established a standing army. The original Constitution allowed for a standing army for a period of TWO years (which is why today, military appropriations happen every two years; it is a means to circumvent the Constitution) and that was how it was until the early 20th century. It has long been established that the Fathers feared a standing army. They were well versed historians which had seen that countries with standing armies were often times over-thrown by its military, which soon oppressed its people. This has happened  time and time again throughout history, and thus the Founders agreed that America would not have a standing army. Of course this approach to the military would not last, but this was the agreement at the time. Read more…

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