Six Words That Matter in the ‘Stand Your Ground’ debate

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from The Gray Area:

In Mr. Philips March 26th article titled, “The Truth About Stand Your Ground” he states that the old law provides self defense options to Florida citizens by saying “If there was no means to avoid confrontation consistent with your own safety, you could freely stand and “shoot, stab, bludgeon, punch, kick or bite.” The statute he references follows:

The defendant cannot justify the use of force likely to cause death or great bodily harm unless he used 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 use of force likely to cause death or great bodily harm if by retreating he could have avoided the need to use that force.

Note that this “old law” requires the person to “use every reasonable means … to avoid the danger“. These six words clearly emphasize retreating from an assault is the preferred response to violence. Therefore, leaving violent criminals free rein over any and all targets because they will get no resistance. While this defies common sense, it is nonetheless a pivotal part of the gun control lobby’s efforts to disarm American citizens.

Compare those six words to these in the new Florida stand your ground law; “reasonably believes that force is necessary“. Both statute’s language offers a reason ability requirement on the victim. However, one is reasonable to retreat and the other is reasonable to defend. If you are the victim of an attack, it is reasonable to consider how to “avoid the danger”, but it is not reasonable to avoid defending yourself.

Under the “old law” the only way you can stay out of trouble is to run away. That is because there would always be an argument in court that said unless you could always run away. That doesn’t insure your safety, the assailant will sometimes harm you for running away. It only protects the assailant from getting hurt. Curious? Lawyers even tried that in the Trayvon Martin case by saying that George Zimmerman should have run away before he was being beaten. How far back in a situation must you go back to be able to say I reasonably did everything possible to avoid the danger? No way to know that and no limit to the left’s definition of a responsibility to retreat.

But what responsibility does an assailant have? Remember, you can be sued by the assailant for damages if you defend yourself against his aggression. Ridiculous! The assailant should be responsible for the attack and the resulting actions of the attack – because he started it!

The six words in each statute clearly represent the difference in this debate. In one you must run away. In the other you may defend yourself if reasonable & necessary. Unless you are a crazed anti-second amendment leftist and will do anything to disarm America, it is obvious which is the most appropriate law language for those who may be the victims of violence.