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Thread: Be a Good Victim

  1. #1
    Regular Member Repeater's Avatar
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    Nov 2007
    Richmond, Virginia, USA

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    Be a Good Victim

    In August, a man shot two people to death on a bridge near San Francisco. At the moment of the killings, two on-duty Marin County sheriff’s deputies were within 100 yards of the shooter. One was close enough to see the muzzle blast of the shotgun. The police officers, however, did not move against the culprit. One, stuck in traffic, called in a description of the killer’s vehicle as he fled. The other positioned her car to prevent traffic from entering the crime scene.

    These two law-enforcement officers did what police officers tell the public to do: Don’t intervene. Get a description of the offender. Call the police. Be a good witness.

    Much debate ensued about whether the officers’ behavior was appropriate, but the real tragedy is that the victims of this rampage did not have the legal opportunity to arm themselves. To them, the message was clear: Be a good victim.

    In the Heller decision last year, the Supreme Court affirmed the Second Amendment right of individuals to keep arms in their home and have them in a condition useful for self-defense. The Court stressed that the individual right to arms was not an unlimited one, leaving undisturbed bans on carrying guns into “sensitive places” such as schools and government buildings. The D.C. suit does not challenge this power, but asks the court to recognize that the whole of the District of Columbia cannot be a “sensitive place.”

    The District will almost certainly mention that the Heller decision also did not call into question 19th-century bans on concealed carry. This ignores the fact that while concealed carry was considered the mark of a brigand, open carry was accepted and legal. Modern feelings are the reverse; concealed carry is now practiced far more often than open carry. The plaintiffs do not specify the method of carry — open or concealed — merely that the Second Amendment does not stop at your front door.

    The lawsuit intends to make the District face reality. Criminals have guns. They brandish them when the police are not on the scene and victims are outside of their homes. The D.C. government should not handicap the honest, law-abiding citizens who wish to carry arms in order to defend themselves.

    Just as the Supreme Court affirmed a right to be armed in the home for self-defense, the courts of the District of Columbia should affirm the right of law-abiding citizens to be armed and defend their own lives outside of their homes. Ending “may issue” policies that work to ensure the victimization of average people will make the District, and eventually the nation, a safer and more just place to live.

  2. #2
    Regular Member TFred's Avatar
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    Oct 2008
    Most historic town in, Virginia, USA

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    Good article, but in your summarizing, you left out a rather key paragraph, the one that introduces the lawsuit mentioned several times in your quoted portion:

    [snip: three other paragraphs about concealed weapons permits...]

    The propriety of “may issue” permitting is now being challenged in court on the opposite coast. The District of Columbia maintains a “shall issue” or, more appropriately, a “no issue” policy. After the Supreme Court struck down the District’s ban on handgun possession within the home last year, the District repealed the police chief’s power to issue permits to let gun owners carry their weapons outside the home. Several plaintiffs have filed a lawsuit challenging this refusal to issue handgun-carry permits.

  3. #3
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    I'm a long time gun owner, going on two years with a handgun and I've never thought of the term "be a good victim". WOW! makes a guy really think about that term. I'll be using that onealong with the other reasons I carry and hopefully makethose folks who question why I do have a gun.

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