LETTER: Laws provide license to killI’m kind of worried about the rash of so called self-defense shootings going on around the country.
To the Editor:
I’m kind of worried about the rash of so called self-defense shootings going on around the country. The passage of “Stand Your Ground” legislation in Florida and other states and the similar “Defend the Castle” or whatever it’s called here in Wisconsin seems to have ended up getting a lot of people killed. Hard to tell if any of those killed were guilty of anything other than being in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Seems like these laws have given some folks the potential to be judge, jury and executioner in any situation where they perceive (and perceive is the operative word here) they are in danger, or perhaps they may just say they perceived danger.
Right now I’m perceiving some danger for a lot of people. Example: Some guy driving down a county road, his car conks out on him, it’s dark, he doesn’t have a cell phone to call for help...but up ahead the guy sees a light in a farmhouse, as he walks up the darkened driveway with his shoulders hunched and his hood up to protect him from the evening chill, the man of the house (or woman) sees the dark figure approaching and feels threatened, grabs the .22 from the front closet opens the door and fires a warning shot, except the warning shot does more than warn, it hits the unfortunate guy in the head. An accident? Sure it is but the guy isn’t any less dead.
Example: Bill gets in an argument with Frank in Frank’s back yard, and stomps off. A couple hours later, Bill returns to apologize and Frank pulls out a gun and shoots him. He tells the cops he was afraid of Bill.
Frank gets off because he was standing his ground and protecting his castle. Bill is still dead. Wouldn’t it be a smart thing to make it harder for people to get firearms as long as we insist on passing these really stupid laws.