Contra Mozilla

Thursday, April 3, 2014

TMM: Cop-Killing Laws

It's kind of old(ish) news, but I'm only now hearing of it: Indiana passed a law to make it legal for citizens to shoot cops who enter their homes illegally:
Self-defense is a natural right; when laws are in place that protect incompetent police by removing one’s ability to protect one’s self, simply because the aggressor has a badge and a uniform, this is a human rights violation. Indiana is leading the way by recognizing this right and creating legislation to protect it.

Of course cops have already begun to fear monger the passage of this bill, “If I pull over a car and I walk up to it and the guy shoots me, he’s going to say, ‘Well, he was trying to illegally enter my property,’ ” said Joseph Hubbard, 40, president of Jeffersonville Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 100. “Somebody is going get away with killing a cop because of this law.”

Instead of looking at the beneficial aspect of this law, which creates the incentive for police to act responsibly and just, Hubbard takes the ‘higher than thou’ attitude and is simply worried about himself.

How about questioning the immoral laws that you are enforcing in the first place? Or how about sympathizing with the innocent people whose pets and family members have been slain, due to police negligence?

I think this kind of thing goes under the same general heading as the (long-since vetoed) Arizona bill which was meant to protect (or grant) religious liberties to those who wanted to opt out of participating in in "gay marriages." Namely, the intent of the law is probably good, but the fact that we even have to consider such laws is a sure sign that our nation (and civilization) is in decline. Actually, we need look no further than some of the comments in the article I linked about the cop-killing law.

In general, I am basically now in favor of this kind of law, for the simple reason that many police (individuals as well as entire departments) abuse their authority. The no-knock entry seems like a good idea, until it is used against petty criminals--or worse, innocent victims whose house is invaded by accident when the police get the wrong address.

A frequent complaint on gun-owners' rights sites (and forums, threads, etc) is that thanks to these no-knock entries and occasional wrong houses, the innocent home-owner now has to waist precious time ensuring that the people invading his home aren't police officers. This is time which might be costly in the event that the invader is a dangerous criminal [1]. Actually, since the police are increasingly likely to harm (or even kill) the occupants of the home regardless of whether or not they are guilty would suggest that they should be treated like average criminals whenever entering a home. A better law would almost certainly be to ban the no-knock entry (and no warrantless entries whatsoever), with automatic civil and criminal penalties against any officer who enters a house without permission or who harms any of the occupants therein.

But all of this goes back to my earlier point--made in the context of the Arizona bill--that we are increasingly living in a country in which rights must be spilled out in the law or they become nonexistent. Prudence is a dying virtue, whether among the citizens, the police, or the legislators and judges. It is a simple matter of common sense that people have a right to self-defense, in particular when they are at home. That is true whether the aggressor is hiding behind a badge or not.

[1] Speaking of which, the question might be raised as to which is more likely: the entrance of a dangerous criminal, or of the police. If the former, then time is being wasted in what is more likely than not a dangerous scenario. If the police are more likely to enter this way, then the law becomes even more obviously relevant, since this would tend to indicate that the polices' irresponsibly entering a home is an all-too-frequent occurrence.

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