Is there really a right to self-defense? by Amanda S. Green
I thought I’d seen it all when it comes to the anti-gun movement. There are those who interpret the Second Amendment as meaning that only the government can have arms because of the use of “militia”. There are those who grudgingly admit we have a right to own guns but they want to limit the kinds of guns and the ammunition we can buy (not only the type of ammo but the quantity). There are those who say the Second Amendment is outdated and needs to be repealed because we should all just love one another or some such thing. Nothing new in any of those arguments and you can go onto any aspect of social media and find folks who will enthusiastically advocate for either side of those arguments.
What I’d not seen until the other day was the argument that the Second Amendment doesn’t allow us to protect ourselves with a firearm.
Yep, you read that right. According to Justin Curmi in The Blog on HuffPo, “the main issue is on the right to self-defend with a firearm.”
Thank about that for a second. I warn you, it gets better.
“The main problem with the notion of self-defense is it imposes on justice, for everyone has the right for a fair trial.”
So, before he even gets into the issue of firearms, he has declared that there is a problem with self-defense because it imposes justice and that is wrong because everyone has the right to a fair trial. I don’t know about Curmi, but I believe a person has the right not to give up her life when in a situation where a reasonable person would believe the only reasonable action is to defend themselves.
It would appear Curmi believes we don’t have the right to defend ourselves or others because it might deny the guy trying to harm us the right to a fair trial. But let’s read on. Maybe he’s fooling us and is going to start talking sense soon.
“Therefore, using a firearm to defend oneself is not legal because if the attacker is killed, he or she is devoid of his or her rights.”
Or maybe not. Surely he can’t be saying we have to give up our lives, or the lives of our loved ones, in order to insure the person trying to harm us gets a fair trial. Maybe he thinks we all need to live in private cells, with no contact with the outside world except through the internet. Either that or he has never known a victim of violent crime or been one himself. I can imagine no other reasonable explanation for why a grown man – or woman or cabbage – would think it reasonable not to be able to protect oneself from danger.
“In addition, one’s mental capacity is a major factor in deciding whether a man or woman has the right to have a firearm. There are two reasons for ensuring mental capacity. First, one of the Five Aims is to ensure domestic tranquility and there can be no tranquility if one does not have the capacity. Second, if one’s brain is distorting his or her reality, they do not have the proper reasoning and deduction skills to use a firearm.”
Oh, how many ways is this statement wrong? First of all, I assume Curmi is referring to the Five Aims of Socialization. Of course, if you do a simple Google search, you’ll find all sorts of different responses to what those are and whether there are three or four or five or who knows how many. The fact he can’t be bothered to give the concrete “aims” or a link to them means either he is lazy or he doesn’t want to risk his readers actually looking up what he’s referring to and coming back to tell him he’s full of it.
Then there’s his comment that “there can be no tranquility if one does not have the capacity.” That’s one of those statements that drive me absolutely bonkers. The capacity for what? For making rational decisions? The capacity to consider the possible consequences of their actions? Or maybe the capacity to keep their emotions in check? Who knows and he sure isn’t going to tell us because the answer wouldn’t fit the narrative.
Then there’s the whole question of what he means by “domestic tranquility”. Is he talking about peace in the home or something on a grander scale?
And, for the most important question of all — why does this only apply to the person defending himself? You’ll note that Curmi makes no mention about how wrong it is for the perp to be doing whatever it is that forces the Average Joe or Jane to defend themselves. Funny about that, isn’t it? Everything centers on the victim – THE VICTIM – and how he doesn’t have the right to defend himself. Sorry, but that just ain’t gonna fly.
As for the last sentence of the above-quoted paragraph, that argument could be used to prohibit people from using just about anything. If your brain is distorting reality, you don’t have the “proper reasoning and deduction skills’ to operate a motor vehicle, use sharp instruments or any number of other things. Heck, if your brain is distorting reality, should you be allowed in a kitchen where there might be a gas stove, dangerous chemicals as well as sharp implements?
I know. Maybe we should just tell the attacker we are about to defend ourselves from that we need a time out to call our psychiatrist to get a certificate proving we were in a non-altered reality state before we get our gun and use it to protect ourselves. Yeah, like that’s going to happen.
“Therefore, if we ponder and meditate on the recent events in news about guns, it would be obvious that the current state is incorrect. A gun for civilians is a weapon for a revolution and not for ordinary use.”
Wait, what? We’ve gone from it is illegal to use a firearm for self-defense to “a gun for civilians is a weapon for revolution and not for ordinary use”? My, my, my, Curmi not only moved the goal posts, he changed fields.
And showed what he really meant with all his proclamations about how the use of a firearm for self-defense was a violation of the perp’s rights. He wants to take away our guns. Still, he’s moved the goal posts once. Let’s see if he stays on this path or not.
“The belief that a gun is a useful tool to protect one is counterintuitive because guns get into the hands of people who use them for horrible reasons.”
So, let’s punish those who obtain their weapons legally, those who are careful about their training and the care of their weapons because if we ban guns no one will have them.
Has this guy been living under a rock. Heroin is illegal and it is still easily available on the streets. Or, better yet, look at Prohibition. That really stopped the production and sale of alcohol. Not.
Wow, I will give him credit for making one accurate statement. It is difficult to hit a target in a stressful situation if you haven’t been trained on the proper use of your gun. Of course, he goes on to none-too-subtly allude to the belief that no one who doesn’t train like a cop can do so. After all, you can’t let the Average Joe or Jane have a firearm. They might find themselves in the situation where they need to use and, in doing so, deprive some poor perp of his “right” to kill them – oops, of his right to a fair trial.
There’s more but I will leave you with just one last note. At the end of his post, Curmi finally gave enough that I could figure out what his Five Aims were. It seems he’s written another post about how we ought to revise the Constitution and lists his own five aims:
Does is promote Justice?
Does it ensure domestic Tranquility?
Does it ensure the common defence?
Does it promote the general Welfare?
Does it secure the Blessings of our Liberty and Posterity?
So let’s go back to the issue of whether it should be illegal to use a weapon to defend oneself. What do you think? Do you think banning guns, or simply outlawing their use for self-defense meets any of Curmi’s so-called Five Aims? Me? No way. Allowing someone to harm me or my family does not promote Justice nor ensure domestic Tranquility. It doesn’t ensure the common Defence or promote the general Welfare. What it does is allow for crime to run rampant because the criminals will know their intended victims can do nothing to stop them without risking jail or worse.
I don’t know about you but I will do whatever it takes to keep my family safe in any situation and I guaran-damn-tee you, my actions would meet the “what would a reasonable person do in this situation” test.
AMANDA S. GREEN NORMALLY BLOGS AT NOCTURNAL LIVES.