Home Invasion Defense

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I keep thinking about Oscar Pistorius who stands accused of murdering Reeva Steenkamp.  I think he’s guilty, but that isn’t the point here.  I am thinking about his use of the self-defense excuse.

Oscar claims he shot Reeva Steenkamp because he thought she was an intruder.  In the most sympathetic analysis this is simply a dumb ass stupid mistake, one can barely call it a “tragedy.”  Our hero hardly lacks a noble flaw.

His home invader was cornered in a bathroom behind a closed door.  Wouldn’t it be prudent to guard the closed door with your loaded weapon and call the police?  Shooting up the door might only piss off an armed invader, drawing return fire.  Right?

Or, guess what…you might kill your girlfriend.

The shoot first ask questions later approach to defense is troubling enough, but shooting first when you don’t know what you’re shooting is criminal.  It demonstrates that all people cannot be trusted to safely and lawfully use their weapons in all cases.

But just the idea that you are justified in shooting someone because they are on your property strikes me as extrajudicial and reckless.  Burglary becomes a capital offense with the sentence executed out of the sight of courts and the people.

The bottom line as I see it is we have too many anti-gun regulation arguments based on fear and paranoia.

I am looking for reliable stats on home invasion.  Unlike gun violence, for example, I haven’t yet found a dependable, objective source.  What you do find is a lot of hype.  Even the Cutter murders from 1959 — the incident behind Truman Capote’s In Cold Blood — is cited on one security site as a reason why you must arm your family now!

I think we’re nuts.

 

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