In the aftermath of the Tucson, Arizona shooting, there will be plenty of analysis. One of the best arguments I have read comes from Sean McClanahan at Examiner here. Sean admonishes Americans to remember to remain objective. Nice job, Sean.
I want to add this to that: remember how it all came down January 8th; Madman Whatizname eluded or sidestepped all gun laws, all murder laws and assault laws. I just watched anti-gun activist Paul Helmke on FOX and heard him say that the United States would be a lot safer without guns. I talk to the television a lot and I answered that murder is already illegal, Paul. So much for laws we expect killers to obey. Murder, which is already illegal, simply negates gun laws as a credible program. Gun bans allow murder.
Who knows at this hour how many laws Whatsizname really broke and how many crimes he actually committed? They'll determine that soon, but something must be remembered by all of America in the outcome of this shooting.
Two citizens stopped the shooter but quick. Sean's article points to the good sense gun owners have in impeaching the fear-mongering tactics of the anti-gun crowd and how people will overkill and get out of control. The two ‘Good Samaritans' who stopped the shooter reminded me of those three citizens in Southern California who stopped a lower school shooter here before he could really hurt someone.
Here is what every American needs to know in second amendment issues, whether you're listening to gun control nuts or not. What gun control activists do not tell you is this:
1. When citizens stop a violent crime in progress, they do not need advance permission from any officials. Anti-gun attorneys who advocate banning guns know (or should know) these five things: i) self-defense is an affirmative defense recognized by criminal and tort law; ii) breaking and entering furnishes presumption of intent to do great bodily harm to the occupant; this is also held in some cases of vehicles in some states; iii) self-defense using lethal force is permitted as a reasonable response when facing grave danger; iv) stopping a violent crime in progress is in accord with public policy, and; v) stopping a crime in progress is in accord with the public interest, and;. vi) you can make a citizen's arrest and you may bring reasonable force to bear to effect that arrest.
These laws and American values were not put in place to hear people move the air around.
Add to this that we in California do not have a duty to retreat, and you have a body of knowledge that changes the entire complexion of how crime is managed by the citizen. Of course you won't hear this from the anti-gun crowd.
2. Civilians who interrupt violence do not operate on shoot-to-kill orders in order to stop or protect themselves or others. Think back to Louisiana Governor Blanco who announced that looters during Katrina disaster recovery would be stopped by "National Guardsmen in helicopters who are battle-hardened and fresh from Iraq with shoot-to-kill orders." (How they can distinguish from altitude the lawful residents from looters remains a mystery, but official remarks such as these donot impress looters, but only give rise to distrust of officials through silly technical error.) Such hasty answers designed to protect the community only wind up excluding one of the community's most understated assets: the armed citizen.
3. Time and again, such Good Samaritans are praised and thanked for their action in the absence of first responders. Quick thinking saves lives in the absence of first responders. Cops and Paramedics aren't everywhere, but citizens are. And where citizens are, so is the public interest, the public policy, and the law.
I could predict that 2011 is going to be the year of the sovereign citizen, but it could wind up being the decade of the sovereign citizen.
Stopping every crime in progress may not be the smartest thing for your average layman to do, but when you're there, the law is there and sometimes that is enough. It was enough yesterday.
The real value of the armed citizen in any community is the spirit of refusing to be a victim, whether it is you or protecting someone else, or having enough armed citizens to make violence rethink its position as a predator at-large. Yesterday, it was all done for someone else; no more shooting victims from one distinct moment forward. How many armed citizens were there ornot there is now immaterial, for they all acted responsibly, didn't they?
The spirit of Independence – the knowledge and awareness that you don't need permission from anyone to act as these people did – is enormously valuable as a return to self-rule and safer streets. Arizona is a right-to-carry state, and is said to be freer than other states who refuse to respect your lawful independence from officials. Think of the gun ban states who do not recognize your authority.
And isn't this what we're all talking about before the 2010 election? Independence from our officials for safer streets and smaller government . . ?
The two good sams summoned that independence yesterday within the laws of the State of Arizona. How many lives did they save? Well, they saved all the rest of them, that's how many they saved. The ones who would not be shot next were saved by the courage – and the legal authority – of the two who stopped Whatsizname from shooting any more.
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