Stand Your Ground
The concept of Stand Your Ground
It means that we can defend our right to be in public or at home without having to yield to attackers including lethal force. I have a duty to protect my right to walk in society and feel justified in using deadly force--if necessary--to keep that right.
I am a rational adult and I will not harm a person who robs me because their life is more important than my money. I will not kill a person who is not trying to kill me. I will not attack a person, but I will defend myself.
I would rather defuse an argument than win it. I would rather step off the sidewalk rather than provoke contention because another is in my path and will not move.
I think that decent people with true meekness are protected by this concept of "Stand Your Ground" because a meek person will not take the upper hand just because he can.
This concept of Stand Your Ground initially sounds great, and I do not believe that any person should be the victim of an assailant just because he or she happens to be in the same place as the assailant at the time that person decides to interrupt the lives of people for selfish illegal activity!
If a person has the ability to intervene and safely prevent criminal activity within his or her realm of influence he or she should. Isn't that how it is done in the movies?
I recall a story where a man, who eventually became a religious leader, recounted a mugging he endured in Chicago. The mugger was apparently a novice and the victim discovered he could easily take down his young assailant, but at the cost of the assailant's life. This man decided to give up his property rather than take a life. He could have stood his ground and killed the man with justification, but decided that man’s life was important enough not to act.
He was not afraid because he could have defended himself had it come to that. He would rather let him go. Having the justification to use deadly force does not mean a person should use deadly force.
Questioning Stand Your Ground
In light of two reports that have wrenched my heart, the Trayvon Martin/George Zimmerman, and the Daniel Adkins/Cordell Jude incidents, I see no need for either Daniel or Trayvon to have been shot.
Zimmerman should be held accountable for his deed. There should be a clause in the Stand Your Ground law that negates the law if the person claiming it purposely places him or herself in harm’s way--trying to be a superhero like in the movie "Kick-Ass."
Zimmerman shot that boy trying to "stand his ground" but Trayvon assailed that man trying to stand his OWN ground.
So, whoever survived is justified?
Where is the line in the sand?
What if I decided to shot a police officer because he tried to arrest me? Have I a right to be unencumbered by shackles?
What if I shoot my neighbor because she accused my kid of stealing her kid's toy? On the other hand, what if she shoots me?
In The Neighborhood
A neighbor accused our children of stealing one of her kids’ portable video game consoles confronted my wife over the misunderstanding. I don't know what the console brand was. The woman confronted my wife on several occasions and my wife graciously explained that if one of our kids took the game we would surely fix the situation.
We interrogated our kids because we know that kids look innocent but are not always so--especially if your view of them is clouded by love and familiarity. We searched the house. We pleaded with, encouraged, threatened, and listened to our kids.
Our kids told us that the neighbor kids left their device at our house once. I remember that situation and also remembered that one of our kids returned it to them. I also recall telling that neighbor kid not to bring electronics to our home again to avoid a situation. Well, of course, I was not heeded. The game came up missing and my children allegedly took the device. After a week of dutiful investigation, my wife and I concluded that the game must have been misplaced and we told the neighbor lady.
One of the kids of that family later went up to my oldest daughter while both were at a public park and slapped the taste out of my daughter's mouth--telling my daughter the slap represented the way she felt about the game they accused us of taking. Being dutiful, my daughter came home and related the incident. Her mother told her not to fight, so instead, she told.
My wife confronted the mother of this girl. The woman was loud and abrasive, using profanity at and around her and in front of her own kids.
She suggested that my wife address her kids, the abrasive woman's kids, and tell them to stop fighting. My wife responded that her purpose in telling the neighbor woman about the slapping incident was so she could instruct her own kids to stop the behavior to prevent misunderstanding.
What if the neighbor woman felt attacked when my wife approached her about the slapping incident? I could be a widower!
All of this is because of a misunderstanding over a toy!
All of this because of a misunderstanding over a neighborhood kid!
There was a shooting because of a misunderstanding at a Taco Bell!
Hear the Lawyer Lionel Explain the Law
Clarify the Law
If Trayvon attacked Zimmerman while he stood on his porch, a surprise attack, that would be a reason to stand his ground. On a public property, a person snatches a purse; I could see that being a reasonable case--though letting the person go would save a life.
If you have the means to escape with property in hand, yet you decide to still kill a person in "self-defense" I say put him or her in jail. If you follow a person scaring the B-Joseph out of them and they attack you--Stalker!
At least Trayvon didn't just shoot him for following him, which could be construed as a justifiable stand your ground issue.
I do not believe in preemptive strikes. I believe in defensive returns. It is called being a good person. It is called being a good person who cares about others. It is called civil society.
When did it become wrong to care about people?
This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.
© 2012 Rodric Anthony Johnson