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Old July 17, 2010, 10:34 AM   #26
Microgunner
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Understand, I'm not a wisher of violence but if an intruder is brazen enough to violate my home while it's occupied I must assume he has nothing but bad intentions for me and mine. I want him dead, oh so completely dead if possible. This intruder will kill or maim eventually and needs to be stopped now. My moral obligation is to my community.
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Old July 17, 2010, 10:53 AM   #27
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I want to clarify something. The only entity that can legally kill someone in the United States is the state or federal government and only after considerable lengthy court room trials and decisions. You cannot kill someone else, but you can try to stop someone else in self-defense or the defense of others. Now if that person dies as a result of you trying to stop them then on a case by case basis the local authorities will study the issues and make a decision if they want to prosecute you. They will see if your actions closely align with the laws in question.

I would never post on a public message board that my intent was to kill someone else as one of the posters just did. That type of intent does not closely align with the laws that are out there. Your intent, at all times, should be to stop the threat...that is...if you do not first have a duty to retreat. I cant think of any laws where they will allow you to kill someone else.

You never (well almost never) see a LEO in the United States put any more bullets into a suspect then they need to. For example, at Fort Hood. The officer only fired off as many bullets as she needed to stop the threat. She didnt keep going and finish off the suspect. Her intent was to stop the threat. Had she put more bullets into the suspect then was needed to stop then she could have been prosecuted for manslaughter or murder in theory.

So dont go telling your friends or posting on messageboards that you want to kill someone else even in self-defense. Now you have admitted to the intent of the crime.
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Old July 17, 2010, 10:54 AM   #28
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I believe that as civilians we all have a moral duty, and personal responsibilty to avoiding dangerous situations. If the oppertunity exists. IME criminals tend to try and isolate their victims. You may not have the option of running away.
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Old July 17, 2010, 11:06 AM   #29
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Originally Posted by Water-Man
peetza, you sure get disturbed easily. In my opinion, it's a personal decision.

Actually, there is very little that disturbs me. The idea that someone would shoot another person rather than take a safe option of retreat is certainly one of those things.


Morally, legally, financially, mentally, it makes no sense. It is disturbing.
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Old July 17, 2010, 11:07 AM   #30
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peetza, while I think your responses are a great illustration of an individual taking on an additional responsibility to be willing to let go of unimportant stuff, I don’t think it can be justly applied by law due to differences in individual cases. If we are to accept the concept of unalienable rights, the concept of property must be one of them or all of them fall. How can you describe a right to anything, including life, without the concept of property … of "it" being yours? … And how can you describe anything as yours without having the ability to influence it’s future or determine its use? Retreat is giving up whatever right you had to the property you are retreating from. If you are required to retreat either morally or legally, you never had a right … morally or legally (respectively) to the property.

While your decision to prize life above all else might be laudable; even then, the personal moral obligation to retreat is dependent on the individual being strong enough (including financially) to give up whatever may be in danger. Cases in point when facing a thief:… property necessary for the survival of the owner and property that could pose grave threat to others if stolen.
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Old July 17, 2010, 11:09 AM   #31
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Originally Posted by usaign
You never (well almost never) see a LEO in the United States put any more bullets into a suspect then they need to.
Polk County Florida
A Florida gunman, who shot and killed an officer and his police dog, was shot at 110 times and hit 68 times when SWAT team members found him the following day hiding in the woods under a tree trunk and he refused to show his hands. Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd said the fugitive would have been shot more, but the SWAT team ran out of bullets. Angilo Freeland (pictured), 27, a suspected drug dealer, fled from police after he was pulled over in a routine traffic stop by Deputy Douglas Speirs. The deputy called for back-up and Deputy Vernon Matthew Williams answered the call with his police dog.

As they followed the suspect into the woods there was a "burst of gunfire" and Deputy Williams and his dog were killed and Speirs was wounded in the leg. An autopsy report revealed that Williams, 39, was shot eight times. He was shot once a close range behind his right year and again in his right temple.

After a massive manhunt for the fugitive through the night, a SWAT team surrounded Freeland in a thickly wooded area hiding under a fallen tree. When he failed to show the officers both hands and they spotted a handgun in one of his hands, they opened fire. Freeland's autopsy showed that he was shot 68 times. An investigation of the scene revealed that police fired 110 rounds.

"That's all the bullets we had, or we would have shot him more," Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd told reporters.


Thanks for the advice.
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Old July 17, 2010, 11:12 AM   #32
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Do you have a moral duty to get yourself killed?
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Old July 17, 2010, 11:25 AM   #33
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The poster that said who's morals nailed it. There's sliding scale morals in this world. I like old school morals (eye for an eye) but nowadays the moral thing is an expectation to run or beg for your life, retreat within your home! haha.

How about this?
If you're 30< then you have a moral duty to retreat/surrender your money & valuables...

30-40 and torn between generations so general confusion

40+ Old school morals, do not back down and set in your ways (yay!)

It's a little amusing and a little scary how some reject the idea of engaging evil with deadly force. Repugnant to kill eh? Maybe so, I don't want to kill. However, open minded critical thinking quickly shows us that human beings are natural born killers. The evil prey on the innocent and kill. The good kill the evil or kill animals and such to eat. There's a pretty fine line between the distinction of evil and good behavior.

There's a world of difference between the sheepdog and the sheep. Not so much difference between the sheepdog and the wolf! Do you think that sheepdog wont kill the wolf? WIll the sheepdog run from the wolf? If the sheepdog kills the wolf, is that repugnant? Maybe, but killing the wolf was necessary. The sheepdog need not back down and retreat. The flock suffers if the sheepdog retreats. Sometimes the Wolf runs if the sheepdog bares its teeth, and the sheepdog will let it go.

These are basic realities of life. By reading the thread it is apparent that some have chosen to not engage evil but to run because they believe that it is the "moral" thing to do. Others have thought it through and realized that Usually it is better to stand your ground. More evil is derailed by giving defense than retreating.

These are not bloodthirsty people who quickly answer to not retreat but to engage the evil...these are intelligent people who have thought it through beforehand so have the answer ready is all.
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Old July 17, 2010, 11:43 AM   #34
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And then the idea of safety comes back into it.

I can't believe that this is so complicated.


It doesn't matter if you're 4, 40, or 95.

Retreat, with complete safety. Complete. Safety.

The 40 year may be able to retreat when the 95 year old can not. The man in a wheelchair may... blah, blah, blah


Complete. Safety.

This is not an exercise in coming up with scenarios that do not involve complete safety.

It is a question.

Why do we need to complicate this?

You can retreat, with complete safety, do you?

Even outside the moral discussion there are extremely compelling social, financial and mental reasons.


Quote:
There's sliding scale morals in this world.
There's a sliding opinion scale. The morals are what they are. Whether I believe it, you believe, anyone or no one believes it. They are what they are.

If they're not, then they literally ARE NOT, as in, there are none. There either is NO right answer to ANY moral question or there is A right answer to a moral question.
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Old July 17, 2010, 11:43 AM   #35
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Make the assumption that retreat is possible with complete safety for all innocent parties but is not required by law.

Are you morally obligated to avoid shooting someone if you have another option?
All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing. That includes retreating from evil and not opposing it
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Old July 17, 2010, 11:47 AM   #36
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All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing. That includes retreating from evil and not opposing it
So "doing something" means staying and shooting?

That's all that a "good man" can do to prevent the "triumph of evil"?
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Old July 17, 2010, 11:53 AM   #37
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Let me see...do I get in my car and drive away in complete safety or shoot someone I don't absolutely, unequivocally HAVE to just to prove I'm someone who won't back down.

Wait, let me think....

D'oh!


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Old July 17, 2010, 11:58 AM   #38
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So "doing something" means staying and shooting?

That's all that a "good man" can do to prevent the "triumph of evil"?
It may, depending on the situation. In another thread, you talked about morals and Adolf Hitler and how he was absolutely wrong. Do you believe that we had a moral obligation to retreat from Adolf Hitler? Or do you believe that he should have been opposed, stopped, defeated?

A situation with a bad guy or a bully is a microcosm of that. Do you believe we have a moral obligation to submit to a bad guy or bully, and give him whatever he wants? Or do you believe we should assert ourselves and stand up for our rights? The bad guy does not have the right to make you take a single step back -- and if he is going to use violence to make you take that step, you have the right to defend yourself

It may be prudent to retreat in many circumstances, but I do not think you have a moral obligation to give a bad guy anything...except maybe space for him to retreat
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Old July 17, 2010, 12:02 PM   #39
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The Florida SWAT team shooting the man 68 times is a different scenario where a lot of gunfire might have been warranted. It may sound ridiculous when you read it, but as you read further you find that it was indeed justified to stop the threat.

First, the person they were trying to arrest was very willing to shoot law enforcement officers. He had killed one officer with 8 shots, wounded another and shot at a police detective. So that person was very willing to battle it out with the police.

Second, the police were chasing the man through a forest in a dynamic environment. When the police finally had him cornered, he produced a loaded weapon.

Third, what have we learned from past incidents such as the Miami shootout. We have learned that there are certain willing and able men out there that can take a lot of shots before they go down and the threat has stopped. In this instance, the man would have fired on the officers even if seriously wounded. If the police only shot the man 2-3 times then he might have been still capable of action against them. I bet that even in a wounded state, he would have shot that .45 he was holding at the police and someone might have been killed.

Fourth, the more guys you have...the more rounds you shoot...the less chance you will hit the target. How many times have you gone to the range and missed the target from a distance?

So 68 shots seems excessive, but the police did what they had to do to stop the threat.

So each incident I believe will be judged on its own merits by the local authorities. I would say that you better not have the intent to kill in any defensive situation, because that will get you into serious trouble.
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Old July 17, 2010, 12:04 PM   #40
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In another thread, you talked about morals and Adolf Hitler and how he was absolutely wrong. Do you believe that we had a moral obligation to retreat from Adolf Hitler? Or do you believe that he should have been opposed, stopped, defeated?
Do you remember the part about complete safety to self and others?


Besides, it's hardly the same argument stopping international aggression and genocide or retreating from a single aggressive person.
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Old July 17, 2010, 12:05 PM   #41
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Do I have a moral obligation to retreat from a threat if I can do so safely?

For me, that answer is yes.

While I have a moral and contractual/oath-based obligation to defend against all threats, I also have an obligation to my family for their physical and financial well-being.

If there is sufficient time and opportunity for me and mine to retreat safely, then we will retreat. I am not in a financially fortunate position of being able to finance a years-long legal battle when other options are available. To speak nothing of the moral gravity of taking another life; something I wish upon no person.

However, if there is no other option; I will use all available force to stop the threat with any and all means necessary to secure the safety of my family and myself.

There's been a lot of chest-thumping and such so far on this thread. Might I remind my fellow TFL members that we do not have the authority or obligation of being judge, jury, and executioner. We carry firearms to protect ourselves and our families; we do not carry firearms to enforce laws even if we think it's the right thing to do. Yes, I understand that the "BG" may harm someone else later on down the line, but are you willing to risk the physical and financial well-being of your own family in order to prevent the possibility of harm to an unknown stranger?

I am not, and I don't believe that any of you are willing to take that risk either. So let's get back to basics; if you can safely retreat from the threat, then do so, call the police, and be a good witness.

If you can safely retreat, you have removed the threat from yourself. In many cases, this will only leave your possessions to be plundered. Fine, take my stuff, that's why I have insurance. Everything I own can be replaced, even "priceless" heirloom guns handed down throughout my family. My wife and children cannot be replaced, nor can I be replaced as a husband, father, and provider if I am convicted and sent to prison. If I must shoot, I want to know in my heart of hearts that it was the only option available to me to save the life of my family or myself. Period.
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Old July 17, 2010, 12:08 PM   #42
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The Texas Constitution
Article 1 - BILL OF RIGHTS
Section 23 - RIGHT TO KEEP AND BEAR ARMS



Deadly Force to Protect Property

"A person is justified in using deadly force against another to protect his property to the degree he reasonably believes the force is immediately necessary to prevent the other's imminent commission of arson, burglary, robbery, theft during the nighttime or criminal mischief during the nighttime, and he reasonably believes that the property cannot be protected by any other means."

"A person is justified in using deadly force against another to pervent the other who is fleeing after committing burglary, robbery, or theft during the nighttime, from escaping with the property and he reasonable believes that the property cannot be recovered by any other means; or, the use of force other than deadly force to protect or recover the property would expose him or another to a substantial risk of death or serious bodily injury. (Nighttime is defined as the period 30 minutes after sunset until 30 minutes before sunrise.)"


Now according to some of the posters in this thread, following the law in Texas is an act of moral turpitude. However, I will submit to you that whether the laws of Texas appeal to your sense of morallity, or not, they certainly help to deter thievery.
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Old July 17, 2010, 12:14 PM   #43
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There is no safe way to answer a vague question like this, because there are no limits on the number of possible scenarios that will be encountered.

Easier to say, can a person honestly justify using force to counter a percieved threat under any possible circumstances, with no regard to outcome?

In specific, for example, we had a retarded teenager in my neighborhood who liked to play strange games. One day, I caught him sneeking through the gates into a neighbor's yard, carrying a toy gun, playing cops and robbers. He tried the back door of the house. I was on my way to kick his butt, and he took off down the block "bang-banging" all the way.

If the door had been open, if he had entered, had my neighbor caught him, WHAT THEN?

The castle doctrine and make my day laws are so simple as to be utterly fatuous, IMO. The answer is, that if the homeowner found him and perceived him to be a threat, killing him where he stood was totally justified. That toy gun, pre red tip vintage, was enough to pose a threat; there is legal precedent that a threat need only be perceived, even if it is an error.

Are any of you people here ready to face the consequences of putting a handful of rounds into the chest of a 6'1" tall retarded 19 year old, and killing him?

Just the fact that even 1 in 100 or even more encounters don't justify a lethal force response is enough to say that MORALLY, you must retreat unless, and until, the threat is absolutely clear. The fact that there will always be circumstances that should not be answered with lethal force is all it takes to show that there is a moral and ethical responsibility to back down, and to be certain of the threat before you shoot.

Down in LA, iirc, some boneheaded clod shot a completely unarmed japanese kid who was standing in his driveway, rather than just stepping inside his house and closing his door. I don't recall if he was ever convicted of murder, but if he wasn't, that was the grossest miscarriage of justice ever. He wasn't even threatened, he left his house and confronted this boy in his driveway, and shot him rather than retreat to safety.
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Old July 17, 2010, 12:18 PM   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nate45
Now according to some of the posters in this thread, following the law in Texas is an act of moral turpitude. However, I will submit to you that whether the laws of Texas appeal to your sense of morallity, or not, they certainly help to deter thievery.

EMPHASIS ADDED
That may very well be the case... However, a law that says you can shoot someone over a 4-wheeler would do nothing to curb the guilt of taking a human life over some petty possession.

Yeah, it's your possession.

No, the "BG" has no right to take it.

No, it's not worth shooting (and possibly killing) another human being for anyone with any variation of a sense of morality and right/wrong.
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Old July 17, 2010, 12:21 PM   #45
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Sometimes a retreat may be the sound thing to do. Depends on a million variables.

Is Peet suggesting that retreat should be the planned response to evil? Should my kid give the bully his lunch money because violence is never the answer? Massad Ayoob thinks so. He says carry a fiver wrapped around a matchbook to toss to the mugger to give em a little gratification and they may break off the aggression. Not a totally bad idea if you consider a single scenario, I mean, what's five bucks, right?

The problem lies in the mindset of the masses. If everyone did this then the criminal element would catch on and crime would increase, time to go collect me a stack of fivers honey.

If you stand your ground then you do not have to necessarily shoot them. This is proven daily all across America. All you need show is that you are ready, willing, and able to do them harm and 99 out of 100 times the evil one will flee. So, no Peet, doing something does not mean only shooting. As usual, the best answer is between shooting and running. It is the rare case that running would have been a better option than standing up to the BG and sending the message that yes I am willing to fight.
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Old July 17, 2010, 12:26 PM   #46
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Peet is suggesting no such thing.

Peet is suggesting that you find yourself in a situation wherein deadly force is authorized by law, but wherein there is an option that you see/know about where you could, by every belief that you have at the time, retreat in complete safety, to a position of safety, without shooting.

It doesn't matter how many scenarios there are. The situation is not vague in any way that matters.

There are only two important points:

1)You are legally authorized to use deadly force.

2)You are aware of a way of escaping in complete safety for all innocent parties.

Do you escape or do you use deadly force?

It really is not a complicated question and it has nothing to do with Hitler or with your 5th grader getting bullied in lunch.
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Old July 17, 2010, 12:28 PM   #47
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Now according to some of the posters in this thread, following the law in Texas is an act of moral turpitude. However, I will submit to you that whether the laws of Texas appeal to your sense of morallity, or not, they certainly help to deter thievery.
After reading that excerpt, it seems pretty clear that if I see somebody stealing my hubcaps off of my car, it, I can shoot him in the back with my 12 gauge, and take them back.

The legislature that passed that bill gave me permission to kill a guy for stealing my 5 year old DVD player, and take no responsibility for it. It's his own fault, after all, he is a thief, and deserves to die, apparently. Otherwise, why would I have the right to kill him bound clearly into law?

That doesn't qualify as moral turpitude, that is a sin of the highest order. That's just one step short of stoning adulterous wives, IMO.
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Old July 17, 2010, 12:30 PM   #48
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Quote:
Nice attempt at baiting...
Nice blatant ad hominem


Quote:
It really is not a complicated question and it has nothing to do with Hitler or with your 5th grader getting bullied in lunch.

The Pizzaguy is correct. Especially with his earlier statement: Last Resort.

Cover. Cower. Conceal.

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Old July 17, 2010, 12:35 PM   #49
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You do not have a duty to move as long as you have the right to be where you are. You have the right to protect yourself and the duty to protect those that depend on you for protection. You have the duty to protect yourself if others are dependent upon you(and this can mean high tailing it out of the situation).

If there is a duty to retreat, then you have no right to be where you are.

The future consequences of your action/inaction must also be considered as relevant to your decision when judging it.

The morals remain the same. Proper action according to moral principle varies due to the variables of the situations. Morality should shape law but is not dependent upon law for its definition.
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Old July 17, 2010, 12:36 PM   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peetzakilla
The idea that someone would shoot another person rather than take a safe option of retreat is certainly one of those things.

Morally, legally, financially, mentally, it makes no sense. It is disturbing.
Well said, PK.

I think it's worth reminding everyone that as private citizens, our right to use deadly force is one of self-defense: we have the right to defend ourselves, our families, and (sometimes) other parties from immediate threats to life. Period. Full stop.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Microgunner
I want him dead, oh so completely dead if possible. This intruder will kill or maim eventually and needs to be stopped now. My moral obligation is to my community.
No. What someone may do "eventually" isn't a reason for shooting him. We don't, as individuals, have the right to "dispense justice," to "cleanse the gene pool," -- or to "assert ourselves and stand up for our rights," if that means taking it on ourselves to use deadly force on someone who isn't an immediate threat.

Taking a human life is a terrible thing, and a huge responsibility. This is why the right to do so without facing legal consequences is severely limited.

We say all the time that we should shoot only to stop a threat, not to kill. As peetzakilla said, "Shooting some one is a... LAST resort." Surely it follows from this that if we can safely end a threat in another way, such as by retreating from it, we have a moral duty to do so.
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