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Old June 13, 2009, 07:30 AM   #109
DeltaB
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Join Date: June 5, 2009
Posts: 70
Without creating a debate over REX LEX vs. LEX REX, it the King law, or is the Law king, we live in a country (those in the USA) that is defined by the rule of law. In the Castle Doctrine, your home is your "Castle" and you, "King" of it. It's the premise, from British common law, that we get out rights to defend ourselves in our own homes, and those states which have the "stand your ground" clause, it extends to your vehicle and your place of business. It is when you abuse your rights as King, as defined by law, that we find so many times this matter becoming an issue. The moral duty to obey a given law is the duty to do as the law states by reason that it is the law. If the state in which you reside dictates that you have to retreat, then it would be immoral, as far as the law is concerned, not to.

The law in the state which your "castle" resides dictates what is the legal duty of your "kingship" in regards to using force on another human being. Some states have opted to give private citizens the right to choose to decide whether to retreat legally. But here is the quagmire, when do you cross the line, whether legal or not, when do you start playing "God" in relationship to being the one who chooses who lives or dies under your power as "King." At that point, you have set up your own system of ethics and morality, ergo..REX LEX, you define what is law. If your ethics doesn't follow the laws of your state, then you can find yourself under the penalty of the law of the state. In the USA, it is the courts who decides legally who lives or dies.

Criminals often show us that they have no regard for the law, or human life. But as a civil society, we cannot choose that path. And vigilantism is no better, it is anarchy in a system that is defined by laws. When we loose our ethical compass when it comes to "life", then we can find ourselves in the same place.

In the end, it isn't so much about the moral duty to retreat, but how much do you value life. Both yours and others. If it does come down to a choice of whether I or the aggressor lives, I'm sorry, I win. If there is in my power, the ability to allow both of us to escape death, I would take that route. (rant over, stepping off soapbox)

Last edited by DeltaB; June 13, 2009 at 08:07 AM.
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