Wednesday, February 26, 2014

The logic of "Stand Your Ground"

Dear New York Times, Self-Defense Is Not Vigilantism

“Stand your ground” is not a principle that endorses vigilantism, the quest to enforce the law unilaterally, but instead a principle that declares that public spaces do not belong to violent aggressors. This represents not the abrogation of law but rather the use of law to more justly determine the rights of aggressor and victim, granting greater rights to the victim and thus bringing the statutory law closer in line with natural law. When the state, by contrast, mandates that citizens retreat from aggression (a concept fraught with practical difficulties and dangers), then it does not limit violence, it instead empowers unlawful aggression.

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