As you all know that read this blog entitled, “MySelfDefenseBlog” I mostly speak for the underdog in society – the ones that criminals try to take advantage. I also support guns/laws that regulate guns so long as they make sense. This is why this case has been so hard for me. Here is the NY Times verdict piece.
The thing is whenever someone enters into an confrontation with another – things can go south fast. That is why I hated working as a bouncer at a bar. I was representing the bar when I had to throw drunk and unruly patrons out! I got in about one hundred fights in the two years I did that. One time when I was chasing a couple of pranksters down the street – a wise old black man watching the parking lot next door stopped me on the way back and gave me some sage advice. More on that but in this post I want to address the real issue I see – not the verdict but how people are treated based on the legal system in a state from my perception.
In California, in most counties, one does not have the right to carry a concealed weapon (county Sheriff’s do not approve the permit). That means only the criminals have guns. So for most folks in California – where you live makes a difference. If you go to the poor section of town at night – that’s where drive by shootings occur. So for most folks – Crime is rare. One just has to be prudent later in life. Don’t do the bars and drunken open parties but rather hang out with your friends. I tell you this because except for the young and dumb (my acronym for youth), most people have no problem staying out of trouble.
All people are vulnerable that have kids… you know the young and dumb. No matter how much a parent tells the kid how to stay out of trouble – they are old and do not understand as much as their friends know. Any if they get hurt – their parents, friends, and acquaintances also get hurt!
So what I am leading up to is in California – issues like happen in Texas and Florida would not happen because unless someone breaks into your house – you cannot legally shoot them in most cases.
California also has the reasonable man standard. If in the opinion of the cops, jury – the person acted reasonably outside of their home and had to take a life – they can be acquitted of any crime.
However if the person did not act reasonably – that person will be held by the cops and convicted for the crime if everything goes right.
In my own personal experience – I’ve had to beat up many people that tried to hit me first. This was back in the days with no cell phone camera’s (heck – no cell phones). So the winner is the only one that could tell a story. Back then any of the people I was trying to knock out because they started it – would have gladly shot me if they had a gun I am guessing. In every case as I was throwing someone out of the bar and they attacked me and I turned the tables on them (remember about 100 times) – I could have been killed I reckon.
How about morally? If their are no witnesses – only the two combatants know what happened. Morally a person ought to take every measure to first avoid a fight and if they have to fight – quickly end it with any means needed. Yes I still believe in self defense and I know how easily it is to hurt a person. But if you do not at the very least incapacitate your opponent – he can rally and take you out!
Regarding the Martin/Zimmerman case – I have no idea if the verdict is just – just as I guess the jury does not. Juries base their decision on the laws.
What I will say is Florida and Texas ought to have laws that require that the victims do everything they can to avoid an altercation before resorting to self defense.
About that wise parking lot attendant – he told me that even total jerks have a mother, father, brother, sister, wife, husband, sons, or daughters, friends and lovers that will miss them. If you don’t think much of the jerk in front of you – remember you will be hurting a lot more people than just him if you end up hurting him.
What do you think?