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Old July 16, 2011, 04:10 AM   #175
JohnKSa
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Join Date: February 12, 2001
Location: DFW Area
Posts: 18,496
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What the hell other reason is there to shoot somebody? We all know what bullets will do when they rip thru somebody's body. If you are shooting somebody, you are intentionally trying to kill them. There is no arguing this.
Somewhere around 90% of the time a person uses a gun in self-defense no one is shot at all. Somewhere around 80% of the time a person is shot with a handgun they survive.

It may help your argument to make it sound like using a gun in self-defense, or even actually shooting someone in self-defense, is a death sentence but nothing could be farther from the truth.

People shoot attackers in self-defense to make them stop attacking. Who cares if the attacker dies if he kills you or one of your loved ones first? Who cares if he lives if you and those you care about survive uninjured.

The prognosis of the attacker is irrelevant to a person who is LEGALLY using deadly force in self-defense. As long as the attack is stopped it shouldn't matter what the long-term outcome is. And once the attack is stopped the justification for deadly force ends.

People who are overly concerned with whether the attacker lives or dies aren't concerned primarily with self-defense as they should be. They are using deadly force to enforce their personal brand of justice, to take retribution on those who have wronged them, to try to right the wrongs of society by killing those they think aren't worthy to survive. That is totally unacceptable in an organized & civilized society.

That is why the pharmacist went to prison and that's why the charge was so severe.
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But I won't be joining the crowd who calls him evil. Misguided, definitely. But subtract the security tape and give Mr Ersland a few of his marbles back so he can keep a story together, and he probably would have been cleared.
Getting rid of evidence doesn't make him any less evil. His evilness is NOT dependent on being held accountable nor is it dependent on whether the state had the evidence to prove their case. What made him evil is the evil thing he did, not the fact that evidence existed to prove it. Personally, I'm very glad that he was caught. I can think of few things worse than an evil person being hailed as a hero because nobody knows the evil that he did.
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Consider the murder of Bin Laden and his family and friends.
When you declare war as Bin Laden did, and seek to kill your enemies whenever and in whatever manner you can then you give up your right to live peacefully and unmolested. Your enemies now have the right to kill you without being considered murderers.

While it is certainly true that murders do sometimes happen during wars (formal or informal wars) it is absolutely not true that all killing in war is murder. Trying to redefine well-accepted terms (like murder) to support one's argument is not a reasonable debate tactic.
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But in some ways this could have made it even harder in that aspect, watching a kid in a pool of blood who had been shot in the head squirm around dying slowly.
This is getting ridiculous. I understand that some of you don't agree with the way this case came out, but fabricating "evidence" to rationalize your views is unreasonable. The testimony, certainly supportable by blood evidence is that the kid did not move after he was shot the first time in the head and fell to the ground.

And the idea that Ersland was moved to shoot him out of pity is laughable. If he truly had pity on him he could have immediately called for medical attention after repelling the attack. Instead he chased one robber out of his store and down the street emptying his gun at him and then returned to the store, checked the robber on the floor, retrieved a second gun and walked over to shoot him. His motives are clear from his actions--there's no need to try to make up implausible motives for what he did. He wanted them both dead. He couldn't catch the one but he was able to come back and kill the first one.
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I am just exploring possibilites. I also realize that that is inconsisent with anything Ersland said.
Why explore "possibilities" that you admit are inconsistent with the evidence?

What is it that makes you so desperate to understand and explain this murderer so what he did doesn't sound as bad as it obviously was?
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The pharmacist ended it with deadly force.
He DID end the fight with deadly force. Legally.

When he came back and murdered the man on the floor the fight was already over and had been for some time.
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The perp would be just as dead.
That's pure speculation. As we know from the Gabby Giffords case, and others, being shot in the head with a handgun is not a death sentence.

Besides, it doesn't really matter. Had he stopped when he should have and the robber expired it would have been legal self-defense. As it was he clearly committed murder.
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A momentary lapse in judgement, due very likely to adrenaline, does not constitute first degree murder in my opinion and certainly does not deserve life in prison in my opinion. I can see most of you disagree.
A momentary lapse in judgement is one thing. Walking back to the store, checking the robber, going to retrieve a second gun, and walking back over to shoot an unconscious man repeatedly is NOT a momentary lapse in judgement. That's called carrying out a plan.
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the pharmacist intentionally killed one of them
And that's exactly the problem. Instead of just trying to stop the attack he was set on killing them. Self-defense isn't about killing, it's about preserving the life and well-being of the defenders and defended. If the attacker dies in the process, that's acceptable to the law. But the law does NOT give anyone the right to TRY to kill someone in self-defense. It might be the outcome but it is not the goal from a legal standpoint and therefore should never be the goal of a law-abiding citizen.

This is not complicated stuff, folks. Just look at the term "self-defense" and it can hardly be plainer. It's clear that the focus is on "defense", not killing and on defense of "self", not offense against the attacker.
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And I wouldn't give him life in prison, given the circumstances. You can call me a barbarian all day long if you want. But if you slam some scumbag that comes into your place of business or home un-announced, waving a pistol in your face, and you end the fight...you'll be glad I'm on the jury.
First of all, there is no need for biased jury members in a legal self-defense case. It's certainly possible to use deadly force in self-defense and still be exonerated without having someone who won't convict a murderer sitting on the jury.

Second, and I've already made this point once, but it seems to be lost on some here. If you kill someone when society via the law says that it's illegal you are just as much of a scumbag as the guy who "comes into someone's place of business or home unannounced and waving a pistol in his face".

It is our ACTIONS and DECISIONS who make us either law-abiding or criminal scumbags. There is NOT some magical quality that humans are born with that makes one person a criminal and another law-abiding. If a person decides to commit murder and then carries it out, he is a criminal. A scumbag who deserves to go to prison.

The idea that some have that that some of us are somehow automatically good guys by virtue of some intrinsic trait is EXTREMELY disturbing, especially when it's used to rationalize actually MURDERING someone. This type of thinking is what leads to genocide, cleansings and holocausts. One group convinces itself that it's intrinsically better than another group (or other groups) and then they're off the hook for their actions and decisions because in their minds it's not actions and decisions that are important.

Law-abiding citizens aren't born with some intrinsic "betterness" than criminals, they create themselves by making correct decisions and by living within the law.

Criminals aren't born scumbags, they create themselves by making bad decisions and by performing criminal acts. ANYONE can make himself into a criminal scumbag by making one or two bad decisions and by performing just one criminal act. The pharmacist did just that.
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