Age, Crime, Punishment and True Justice


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Old Dog
July 19, 2005, 10:40 PM
I’m curious as to what the prevailing attitude of THR members really is, as far as crime and punishment. Of late, I'm becoming increasingly dismayed by a certain recurring attitude reflected by numerous posts ... And frankly, I'm not seeing a lot of opposition to some of these types of remarks.

Some recent threads recount news stories wherein a young person, typically engaged in some type of minor criminal activity (e.g., shooting bottle rockets near or at passing cars or breaking into a car and stealing the stereo) ends up crippled or dead. Notwithstanding the fact that everyone IS responsible for one’s own actions and should be held justly accountable, it seems that many members of THR consistently respond with comments such as: “Good, more gene pool cleansing” …”Righteous shoot” …“Darwinism in action” … “The miscreant got what he deserved” … “I would have drawn down on him” … “A life of crime nipped in the bud” … You get the gist.

Some of these stories seem to involve persons with no criminal records, appear to be either adolescent flirtation with petty crime (which can be overcome, as I’m certain many THR members know from personal experience), just plain childish stupidity or the result of long-term lack of parental guidance and involvement.

What disturbs me is that so many posters indicate that in some of these situations that (if they were involved) they would respond with a firearm -- and deadly force ... Or, they seem tremendously encouraged that the story's subject ended up either crippled for life or deceased. Some posters have responded with seemingly bloodthirsty enthusiasm as far as the use of deadly force to deal with property crimes, where no weapon was displayed by the suspect, the suspect was in the act of fleeing, or the crime involved property not vital to our national security interests …

What’s the real attitude of everyone here?

- Are some here so anxious to use their guns that they would shoot a fleeing 15-year-old in the back over a car stereo?

- Are some here so judgmental that they truly believe an appropriate punishment for a juvenile criminal who commits petty theft is death?

- Are some of you here really so lacking in compassion that you can’t feel a spark of sadness, at least for the family, when a teenager is left a quadriplegic after being accidentally shot while committing a car burglary?

- Is it truly justice when a 12–year-old boy is killed by a passing car after being chased into traffic by an enraged motorist whose car was the target of a bottle rocket launched by the boy? Do you really believe that?

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Sindawe
July 19, 2005, 11:09 PM
As I've stated in some of the threads you reference Old Dog, and others you have not, stealing my possessions is stealing the portion of my life that was spent to earn the funds to obtain those possessions. If a person has no qualms about stealing a portion of my life, why should they have any issue with stealing ALL of it?

If in the act of some petty crime, the youthful miscreant has something particularly traumatic (though not necessarily harmful or lethal) it may give them pause to reconsider such actions next time the urge strikes them....

"Gee, last time I swipped some of old man McGrump's apples, I got a butt full of rock salt. If I borrowed his truck for the day, he might just kill me. I'd better find something less dangerous to do. I think I just go fishing."

Knowing how the legal system, and a good number of my fellow citizens view such an opinion, I'd 'prolly be disinclined to actually take a shot at a fleeing criminal. Just not worth the hassle from those who express/put into practice the stance you appear to support. But I understand completely those who would.

Of course, should said young punk mess with my family, friends or animals directly, well the fires of The Hot Place will be a vacation on the beach after I'm done with 'em.

ralphie98
July 20, 2005, 12:03 AM
I think it's just a lot of macho talk, people trying to sound like the tough guy. I doubt much thought is given to the circumstances. The people saying it's good that the kid got shot in the back for jacking the car stereo would hopefully have better sense than to do such a thing themselves intentionally.

As I've stated in some of the threads you reference Old Dog, and others you have not, stealing my possessions is stealing the portion of my life that was spent to earn the funds to obtain those possessions. If a person has no qualms about stealing a portion of my life, why should they have any issue with stealing ALL of it? I don't buy this

It would be like taking a bit by Henry Rollins (I think) seriously. He talks about time murderers. If killing somebody is considered depriving them of a part of their life, then wasting somebody's time is just as bad since you are depriving them of a minute or two of their life. All of these people wasting your time would be murdering you one minute at a time and should be punished accordingly.(I'm paraphrasing of course)

Sounds kinda silly when you put it like that, but the way I read these types of posts, it's the same idea.

Standing Wolf
July 20, 2005, 12:31 AM
I'm sure there's a certain amount of posturing involved in some of these threads; I'm equally sure, however, the posturing isn't even a seventeenth of 1% as inimical to the nation as the revolving door criminal so-called "justice" system that prevails from coast to coast.

It's one thing to huff and puff on the internet; it's altogether another to turn the lowest of the low loose to commit more crimes of the most abominable sort.

P95Carry
July 20, 2005, 12:36 AM
There is inevitably I think a large measure of ''keyboard bravado'' - more so maybe (said with due respect) from younger guys, some anyways.

The ''cap his a$$'' syndrome is an easy one to promulgate but - on balance I think and hope that even those folks from states with castle doctrine might in real life be not quite so (apparently) trigger happy.

I doubt anyone wants all the legal sequele and hassles from a shooting - and all too often what seems like a good idea (''capping'') is not - there are alternatives. For me the bottom line is - me and mine - are they under threat of lethal force. If so then I will respond in kind and hopefully win the day. Beyond that I would prefer to find alternatives.

It is tho something I think many feel, that when we hear of a blatent attack - viz lethal force from a BG - that we do make references to the 'gene pool' - in my case it is only because I have little feeling of remorse over some low life getting his just reward - as long as - it is a totally justified shooting. There are tho a great many cases where doubts exist.

We need to be careful how we judge and respond.

peacefuljeffrey
July 20, 2005, 12:41 AM
What you're witnessing, Old Dog, is probably hyperbole being used to express the utter disgust and consternation that we are suffering because it really seems that the prevailing attitude about youth is of permissiveness, and forgiveness for serious crimes when punishment is truly what is called for.

We are a group of people pushed to the edge of what we can tolerate seeing go on in society. Our society is truly SICK. So forgive us, if we sometimes spout off about how fed up we are, and engage in a bit of fantasy.


-Jeffrey

Fletchette
July 20, 2005, 12:53 AM
Old Dog,

I have noticed this too, and have been accussed of the exact opposite - being too soft on crime. My basic attitude is that we as a society are over-reacting to many things, crime being one of them. We should assess with a cool head what really should even be considered a crime, as we have so many laws on the books. Also, many crimes that are presently felonies should really be treated as misdemeanors.

As for shooting; my view is that it is only just to shoot if your life or limb, or that of an innocent, is reasonably in danger. The only justifiable reason for shooting an unarmed man in the back that I can think of (barring warfare) is if someone snatched an infant and was outrunning you. Even in that case, I'd probably go for the legs so as to minimize injury to the infant.

KriegHund
July 20, 2005, 12:55 AM
Sometimes they get what they deserve. Sometimes they dont.

Would i shoot a fleeing criminal? No, unless he posed an immediate threat to someone or a firearm.

Its just to much trouble- let the guy go if hes not going to pose a threat.

Would i shoot someone who, despite having a gun drawn on them, continued to approach with a deadly intent? You betcha.

JDThorns
July 20, 2005, 05:17 AM
OldDog letme tell you my story.
I was unloading groceries one day ( the wife was in the hospital having our second child) 2 BGs pushed my door open and came in my home. One of them demanded money and my watch, I complied and gave up my wallet and watch thinking they would leave and not harm me or my infint son. When I did not have enough cash for their needs ( I had not seen a weapon so far) one of them pulled out a 25 cal and fired at me striking me in the neck. and went through my kitchen window, at this point I lost it I ran into the next room and retrieved my 38 when the scumbags saw it they took off. One of them stopped on the sidewalk pointed the gun atme saying he was going to come back andbust a cap in my arse. At this point iI drew down on him and fired 3 shots 2 of the struck my neighbors car but thr 3 rd one took off his knee cap. Do in answer to your queston Yes I would take then out. How am I supposed to know wheathr or not they have a weapon? I was out of work for 3 weeks because of this. You see I tried to be nice about this but they was out for blood, Mine. as a result of this I could have ended up DEAD what would you have me do/ kiss their *@****. Both of them had career criminal record s. They are out of prison just after 5 years and live just up the street from me. Now they don't mess with me bacause they know I am armed and will fight back. :fire:

Sindawe
July 20, 2005, 05:32 AM
They are out of prison just after 5 years and live just up the street from me. Sounds like they need to suffer an "Unfortunate accident" in the very near future. "Gosh, what a shame. And just out of prison you say? tsk tsk. I hope they did not suffer..Too shread you say? Oh My, such a shame..." Glad you survived the encounter JDThorns.

Dogs. Time for a pair of dogs in my life perhaps. Named Fenrir & Cerebus I think. :evil:

peacefuljeffrey
July 20, 2005, 05:40 AM
Old Dog,

I have noticed this too, and have been accussed of the exact opposite - being too soft on crime. My basic attitude is that we as a society are over-reacting to many things, crime being one of them. We should assess with a cool head what really should even be considered a crime, as we have so many laws on the books.

Yes, but Fletchette, you are really brazenly setting up a strawman here.
No one is ambiguous about crimes of violence, and those are really the crimes we are bemoaning happening. Robbery. Rape. Murder. Even plain old beatings. You wonder if we should reassess whether these should be crimes?

I mean, yes, growing marijuana for personal use should not be a crime (and I don't even use the stuff). Yes, no consentual sexual activities should be crimes. Lots of stuff should not be crimes. But let's not pretend that we here at THR are crying that the sky is falling over petty malum prohibitum crimes. We're clearly about the malum in se crimes.

I don't agree that people who are concerned and angry over GANG CRIMES OF VIOLENCE are making a mountain out of a molehill. This stuff is truly a problem.

-Jeffrey

zahc
July 20, 2005, 11:28 AM
I think it is a fully good idea for people to make burglary and theft a very dangerous activity. I see no convincing reason why it shouldn't be.

Don't want to be shot, don't break into cars. Works for me.

Note I personally don't feel death is a suitable punishment for anything less than lethal force. But I'm also not a fan of putting the burden of determining whether lethal force is present on the innocent party. Criminals often carry weapons and escalate property crime to physical ones.....

Consequently I have a hard time feeling remorse over people that recieve lethal responses to nonlethal crimes they initiated.

petrel800
July 20, 2005, 12:10 PM
Crime is subject to economics, just like any other revenue generating activity. If crime pays (risk vs. reward) there will be more criminals. If the death of some kid stealing stereos convinces 10 not to take that path, then good riddens.

I too am tired of the they're just kids, or not my sweet little angel in the paper and news. There is no more accountability left in this society. Everyone's a victim, even the criminal.

We've spent so many years denying Darwin with welfare programs and handouts, that it seems we have encouraged this kind of behavior. You can't buy anything these days without a safety label on it. We've been taught that if we are approached by a criminal to just give him what he wants and he'll go away. We've been taxed to house these criminals in jails that have more channels on TV and a better gym that most people have access to. Then we let them out before they serve 10% of their sentence.

People can only take so much of this crap before they become indifferent to criminals being shot for they're actions.

To answer your questions,

What’s the real attitude of everyone here?

- Are some here so anxious to use their guns that they would shoot a fleeing 15-year-old in the back over a car stereo?

I'm not, and I don't think anyone here would, but it's kind of hard to feel sorry for someone who would go to great lengths to put himself into that position.

- Are some here so judgmental that they truly believe an appropriate punishment for a juvenile criminal who commits petty theft is death?

Stealing car stereos isn't petty theft. Breaking into a car causes quite a bit of damage to the vehicle and some car stereos cost $100s if not $1,000s of dollars. Plus if someone is that far up the food chain of theft, Grand Theft Auto is probably the next step. Once again is it an appropriate punishment, probably not, but he sure as heck isn't a victim of the situation.

- Are some of you here really so lacking in compassion that you can’t feel a spark of sadness, at least for the family, when a teenager is left a quadriplegic after being accidentally shot while committing a car burglary?

No, because most of the time the kid is out a 12 or 1 am and the parents have allowed this behavior to occur. If anything, the parents in these cases should be charged with their childs death allowing them to be out that late unsupervised.

- Is it truly justice when a 12–year-old boy is killed by a passing car after being chased into traffic by an enraged motorist whose car was the target of a bottle rocket launched by the boy? Do you really believe that?

The only victim in that case is the girl who hit the 12 year old boy. Its not truly justice, its just a situation IMO where a group of stupid people came together, but if you do stupid things its a matter of time before you do something stupid to the wrong person.

dolanp
July 20, 2005, 12:20 PM
I would not go so far as to say I'd 'shoot the little bastards' or anything along that line. However, when I see a criminal, regardless of age, reaping what they sow, I am not really compelled to feel sorry for them.

pcf
July 20, 2005, 12:46 PM
Is getting shot over a car stereo excessive, no. If robbing cars was so petty and minor, why did the thief run?

Ever had to dish out $500 in November to pay your deductible because someone trashed your car, instead of buying a plane ticket to go see your kids at Christmas? Even "minor" property crimes can take a huge toll on the victim(s).

lysander
July 20, 2005, 12:50 PM
Old Dog,

I share your lament on this one. As I peruse the threads here on THR I am often saddened by the apparent callousness of some posters. The story of the 12 year old dying because of bottle rocket hijinks is a good example and was especially tragic. I can recall my days as a pre and early teen. I can recall throwing snowballs at moving cars and running away. I can recall bottle rocket fights in the local park. These things are just something that boys do...and I am beyond happy that I and all my friends escaped unscathed. In the case of that poor 12 year old...we have so many families and lives shattered...and the apparent indifference of many who post here is equally chilling.

It is OK to acknowledge a tragic turn of events. It doesn't make you weak. It doesn't mean you are a bleeding heart liberal. It is also OK to acknowledge that people can be stupid...but does stupidity warrant death?

Sometimes I think that the bloodthirsty responses found in some threads must come from people who just feel browbeat. From people who have had it up to here... :cuss: and are looking for a place to vent. But, who knows?

LeonCarr
July 20, 2005, 01:52 PM
Never pass up the opportunity to LEGALLY kill a criminal.

Just my .02,
LeonCarr

Old Dog
July 20, 2005, 02:36 PM
Never pass up the opportunity to LEGALLY kill a criminal.
And statements such as this reflect exactly the attitudes I was speaking of in my post. I truly hope this attitude is not representative of most of the THR membership (if it is, perhaps a name change for the forum would be in order).

This sort of thinking is not going to win over any antis or fencesitters on the RKBA issues.

For the people who believe that a death sentence for every petty thievery is justified, I just have to wonder -- where's the humanity here?

Not every crime is a capital offense. Not every criminal is beyond redemption.

For those who believe that killing children who perform criminal misdeeds is justice, well, I can only pray that no child in your family or circle of friends would ever be involved in one of these cases. And for those who righteously maintain that "It will never happen in my family because we raise our children properly," here's hoping that you never have to find out the hard way that even kids from loving, attentive and morally upstanding families do stray off the right path sometimes ...

Fletchette
July 20, 2005, 02:50 PM
Yes, but Fletchette, you are really brazenly setting up a strawman here.
No one is ambiguous about crimes of violence, and those are really the crimes we are bemoaning happening. Robbery. Rape. Murder. Even plain old beatings. You wonder if we should reassess whether these should be crimes?

No, I am not complaining about prosecuting these violent crimes. But the prosecution of ridiculous "crimes" wastes resources and fills our prisons with people that should not be there. Read JDThorns story. Here we have two career violent criminals that commit their srime and are out in 5 years. Why? Because we have to release them to free up a cell for a pot-smoker.

Violent criminals should be put away for a long time. Youthful stupidity is most often its own punishment.

HankB
July 20, 2005, 03:11 PM
. . . are different from actions.

I believe few people here will actually kill a bad guy over what many perceive as a petty crime. But just because they wouldn't do it themselves, doesn't mean they won't sympathize with someone who actually does.

As a group, it's been my observation that we at THR don't tend to value bad guys - even minor bad guys - very highly.

Old Dog
July 20, 2005, 03:27 PM
Attitudes ... are different from actions.
And perception does not always mirror reality.

Thus, another point I wanted to make was that, should we continually broadcast our views as being those of bloodthirsty, anxious-to-shoot-any-bad-guys, ultra-hardcore bada$$ and no-compassion-for-anyone group, this is exactly how we will be perceived by those outside our group. Now, if this is how the majority here want to be viewed, I submit that no one should be surprised, offended or otherwise worry about how the rest of the world views gunowners. As a consequence, the RKBA movement continues to suffer image problems ...

Werewolf
July 20, 2005, 03:43 PM
Not every criminal is beyond redemption. You are correct sir... about some.

But the recidivism rates show that most are beyond redemption.

So... With tongue in cheek and paraphrasing a medieval general in Southern France:Screw it! Just shoot 'em all and let GOD sort 'em out!

That said I'm not sure I could shoot a 15 year old kid for breaking into and stealing my car - hell I know I couldn't do it. However, without any doubt I know that I could shoot the same kid if he threatened my life or the life of a family member.

On the other hand adults aren't kids. The difference between the two is that adults are supposed to be able to see further into the future than the end of their noses and weigh the consequences of their actions. Thus, can't do the time don't do the crime becomes a very cogent concept when any criminal action is undertaken.

peacefuljeffrey
July 20, 2005, 04:46 PM
+1 for Zach for this: I think it is a fully good idea for people to make burglary and theft a very dangerous activity. I see no convincing reason why it shouldn't be.

Don't want to be shot, don't break into cars. Works for me.

Note I personally don't feel death is a suitable punishment for anything less than lethal force. But I'm also not a fan of putting the burden of determining whether lethal force is present on the innocent party. Criminals often carry weapons and escalate property crime to physical ones.....

Consequently I have a hard time feeling remorse over people that recieve lethal responses to nonlethal crimes they initiated.

A perfect post!


And Leon, I agree with you about passing up an opportunity to legally kill a criminal. Society doesn't need 'em, they harm society, they could be the next person responsible for the criminal killing of your loved one or someone else's.

Old Dog, when you decry a statement like Leon's, when he advocated NOTHING that is outside the law (as long as the law is clear in providing the right to kill the criminal in the given circumstances) then you are decrying his right to do something legal, and that itself is out of bounds.

After all, why are you in a position to judge anyone? If the law says that I can shoot if threatened, YOU have the choice to not shoot if you don't want to. But you don't have the prerogative of judging ME if I DO decide to shoot because the law allows me to.

This judgmentalism (which, I would add, seems to give an awful lot of kindness to criminals for no good reason I can see) is really no different from antis begrudging us CCW even though it may be completely legal for us. How can someone bitch about someone else doing something that is within the bounds of the law?

And why would you do what they do? We get enough of that from the antis. Stop with the sympathy for the scumbag criminals, please! :barf:

-Jeffrey

LeonCarr
July 20, 2005, 04:46 PM
Mr. Old Dog,

In most of the cases where a criminal is killed by a law-abiding citizen in justifiable self-defense, the criminal killed has a long history of violent crime. What this means is that before that person became a victim, there was one or more previous victims. The criminals I referred to in my previous post are the ones intending to do harm to myself or other people. My intent was not that you should kill criminals who do things to your property, but Chapter 9, Section 42 of the Texas Penal Code gives me that justification if necessary.

Every time I hear about a law-abiding victim being assaulted, raped, or killed by a criminal, I ask myself, "What if that person would have been armed, and knew how to use it?".

It is not my intention to portray myself or others as "baby killers", but children commit violent crimes everyday, and the penetentiary is full of them.

Just my .02,
LeonCarr

peacefuljeffrey
July 20, 2005, 04:49 PM
Thus, another point I wanted to make was that, should we continually broadcast our views as being those of bloodthirsty, anxious-to-shoot-any-bad-guys, ultra-hardcore bada$$ and no-compassion-for-anyone group, this is exactly how we will be perceived by those outside our group. Now, if this is how the majority here want to be viewed, I submit that no one should be surprised, offended or otherwise worry about how the rest of the world views gunowners. As a consequence, the RKBA movement continues to suffer image problems ...


If enough scumbag criminals thought there were enough "bloodthirsty, anxious-to-shoot-any-bad-guys, ultra-hardcore bada$$ and no-compassion-for-anyone people out here among the public, with guns to defend our lives, loved ones, and property,
maybe the criminals would think twice about trying to ply their criminality against us.

And who cares what anyone else thinks? We have the legal right to defend ourselves, whether they scorn it or not.

-Jeffrey

DeseoUnTaco
July 20, 2005, 04:54 PM
I agree with all that has been posted on this thread so far: some of it is keyboard commando-ism. Some is frustration with attitudes of tolerance towards crime. Many things. I for one think that people make mistakes, and a mistake that doesn't cause long-term harm in another should be forgiven. I'm not happy about our current system of giving out felony convictions like they were parking tickets, and then the felony conviction disables (ie, civil disability) the person for ever and stays on the record forever. America is using its justice system to create a large pool of eternally second-class citizens. They are paid less, they have to do what they are told by employers (conditions of parole), they cannot vote, they cannot own a gun. So many things are felonies these days. It's not legal to discriminate based on race, age, many other factors, but it is legal to discriminate against a felon, which means paying less money. Also felons know they have a hard time getting a job so employers can abuse them and they won't speak out about it.

As for defending myself against criminals: certainly I would do it if my life is threatened. If someone just wants some property (usually to buy drugs) and I don't feel my life is in danger, let him take it. I saw on another post somewhere "count on spending $50k in legal bills for every shot you fire." Ok, that's not a solid rule but there is some truth to it. So even if you shoot to defend property you still don't come out ahead. It sucks to be the victim of a criminal and nothing can erase the damage from it.

Augustwest
July 20, 2005, 04:59 PM
In the words of Capt. Malcom Reynolds, fictional smuggler, thief and man of honor:

You don't know me, son. So let me explain this to you once: If I ever kill you, you'll be awake, you'll be facing me, and you'll be armed.

Combat-wombat
July 20, 2005, 05:01 PM
I've seen the same things, Old Dog... I agree with you wholly.

Otherguy Overby
July 20, 2005, 05:05 PM
And statements such as this reflect exactly the attitudes I was speaking of in my post. I truly hope this attitude is not representative of most of the THR membership (if it is, perhaps a name change for the forum would be in order).

This sort of thinking is not going to win over any antis or fencesitters on the RKBA issues.

For the people who believe that a death sentence for every petty thievery is justified, I just have to wonder -- where's the humanity here?

Not every crime is a capital offense. Not every criminal is beyond redemption.

For those who believe that killing children who perform criminal misdeeds is justice, well, I can only pray that no child in your family or circle of friends would ever be involved in one of these cases. And for those who righteously maintain that "It will never happen in my family because we raise our children properly," here's hoping that you never have to find out the hard way that even kids from loving, attentive and morally upstanding families do stray off the right path sometimes ...
__________________
Will

Lemme venture this: What we are seeing here is a reaction to an overly permissive society.

IOW, it's okay to steel if you are a child (under 25), it's only property or some other collectivist justification.

By making value judgement on the response of the damaged, you may well be justifying criminal behaviour. He was only stealing a car stereo, or a horse or something.

You've a choice here:

Accept the occasional over-response: Killing a petty criminal (or child under 25).

OR: Awarding societal benefits to culturally disadvantaged perpetrators.

So, who's the real victim? Should the victim have the right of self defense?

Utimately, what you are proposing is criminalizing response to criminal action.


Howzat for tossing Occam into the deep end?

Old Dog
July 20, 2005, 05:24 PM
Clearly, some of you have missed my points.

In NO case do I advocate the denial of any person's right to use deadly force in their own defense, or in defense of family or loved ones ...

At NO point do I advocate leniency in sentencing for those convicted of crimes, whether or not those persons are children.

What I AM talking about are the comments made in many posts by THR members and the attitudes of (I'm assuming here, I know it's a stretch) law-abiding gun-owners.

I was originally wondering if many members were actually as bloodthirsty and heartless and ready to kill as they seemingly want readers of their posts to believe. I am speaking of the image we portray when we go on record with some of the heinous comments such as "Good; he got what he deserved" when written in response to a story about a 12-year-old boy being killed.

Honestly, if some of you cannot see the forest for the trees, I don't know how you expect to successfully communicate to others just how important the right to keep and bear arms is. And if you're NOT worried about what others think -- our movement really is in trouble.

And who cares what anyone else thinks? We have the legal right to defend ourselves, whether they scorn it or not.
pj, have you not been paying attention to what's going on in this country with respect to RKBA? We'd darn well better care what others think...

OR: Awarding societal benefits to culturally disadvantaged perpetrators.
What? Where did this come from? I'm talking about beliefs and attitudes, not coddling criminals based on their background.

carebear
July 20, 2005, 06:01 PM
Old Dog,

In re the kid running into traffic story. After doing something wrong, and facing the foreseeable consequences (maybe excessive and illegal, but still reasonable to foresee) of getting caught, THE KID RAN INTO TRAFFIC!

The guy was just chasing him, not herding him. If someone breaks right instead of left it isn't the pursuers fault. If the kid can't think clearly enough about setting up his little prank ambush to have a back door out (like I always did, and if I'm smart enough to think it through he should be too, cause we're all equal right :rolleyes: ) and pulls a bonehead move as a result, it is HIS FAULT what happens.

End of story. It is sad, and I feel for his family's loss, but I refuse to grieve terribly over an idiot having his idiocy catching up with him.

Just as I refuse to weep when people who CHOOSE to commit crimes suffer the consequences, excessive or not. THEY chose to do wrong and THEY failed to do wrong in a smart way. THEY had the absolute ability to control their fate up until the last moment.

I REFUSE to be taken to task as bloodthirsty for failing to have sympathy for the criminal. ESPECIALLY the ones who aren't even smart enough to pull off crime successfully.

You don't get to be stupid in an inherently dangerous business and expect to live a long life. Just as an inherent, foreseeable, yet excessive and illegal, risk of doing crime is victimization by brutal cops or fellow inmates, so is getting illegally shot or beaten by pissed off victims. There's no excuse for anyone, us or them, whining about it after the fact. You do reap what you so.

It's not being cruel or bloodthirsty, it is just being realistic and tired of the whining.

Old Dog
July 20, 2005, 06:52 PM
Argh!! While I debated remaining silent on this thread, I guess I'll follow up yet again ... Since I'm reasonably certain that in my original post I wasn't chiding folks for not displaying sympathy for the subjects of these stories ... Rather, I was trying (apparently, not succeeding) to speak to the utter callousness of many statements made by posters in response to some of the stories (and questioning the beliefs and feelings behind the responses). And I noted the resultant (in my view) potential for perpetuating an already widespread, negative image of gunowners ...

No one's asking anyone to grieve for the "victims" or their families ... But ...
Comments such as:
"Sounds like the punk got what he deserved." -- in response to the story about the 15-year-old boy, paralyzed after being shot allegedly attempting to steal a car stereo --
or:
"Darwinism in action." in response to the 12-year-old getting killed in the Bottle Rocket Incident --
when these might in fact, have been the only occasions in which these kids tried something remotely resembling a criminal act ...
will simply result in our movement's loss of credibility.

Perhaps the kids were already embarked on a lifetime of crime ... Perhaps they'd committed numerous, more violent crimes, yet never been caught. Perhaps they were deserving of serious punishment for something they'd done. We may never know. What we should know, is that making statements like the ones above just make us ALL look like idiots.

GhostRider66
July 20, 2005, 07:39 PM
I was originally wondering if many members were actually as bloodthirsty and heartless and ready to kill as they seemingly want readers of their posts to believe. I am speaking of the image we portray when we go on record with some of the heinous comments such as "Good; he got what he deserved" when written in response to a story about a 12-year-old boy being killed.

I'm not sure that I agree with your assessment. A lot of people have no qualms about writing a quick snippet like this on an internet forum because it's not that meaningful a discourse here. People tend to read a bunch of quick stories, fire off a short response and move on to the next one. It doesn't shock anyone anymore and perhaps it shouldn't. I'm not saying that this is the way most of these people would personally react in this situation but the logical conclusion of the actions are hardly surprising anymore.

Not sure if you have kids or not but here's my point. When your kid is going to a party on a weekend night with a bunch of other kids and you decide to warn them about drinking and driving, do you tell them, "Hey Bobby, it's not a good idea to drink and drive because if you're caught, you might lose your license and have to pay a big fine." Dear Lord I hope you don't. I warned my daughter not to because it could get her killed.

The point is just when we think that something is right or just, real life tends to interfere very quickly and often in harsh ways. Sometimes it's self-inflicted and sometimes it through someone else's stupidity. Either way, I don't think your going to find a lot of people that are outwardly shocked when things turn out this way. Does that mean that they would willingly choose the same penalty or outcome? Hardly.

peacefuljeffrey
July 20, 2005, 07:48 PM
Utimately, what you are proposing is criminalizing response to criminal action.

Exactly.

The line keeps getting pushed back. "Oh, all he did was [blah]... That ain't so bad..."

And then suddenly doing [blah] really isn't regarded as criminal anymore, in so far as no one seems to think that it's worth punishing,
and more importantly, anyone who defends against someone doing [blah] to him or his property is now considered to be wrong, to be overreacting.

So whuppin' the ass of some teen punks who keep spray painting your garage is bad, because they're just "having innocent, although misguided, fun," and now you are wrong to be expecting that your property may not be vandalized. Your property is to be sacrificed to the permissiveness that willfully refuses to see the miscreants punished like they should be.

And people will call you "bloodthirsty" if you make a peep that suggests you feel otherwise. :rolleyes:


-Jeffrey

MikeIsaj
July 21, 2005, 12:12 AM
Old Dog,

Now do you see why we don't all address the bravado? Those that bluster, seldom listen, so there's no point in trying to talk to them.

Until you have looked down the sights at another human being and squeezed the trigger, you will never know what an immense decision that is. Anyone who speaks lightly of it has not had to make the decision.

That said, I have no sympathy for criminals of any age who suffer unforseen consequences of their criminal behavior. I don't advocate the death penalty for a bottle rocket but, will not lose sleep over a stupid person being the victim of their own stupidity.

Biker
July 21, 2005, 01:11 AM
Mike
Well said.
Biker

telewinz
July 21, 2005, 07:07 AM
IF I want it and I don't think I will be caught I'll DO IT! That is the common attitude now days, we are by any measure a very permissive society yet we do a poor job of teaching our young how to be legally responsible for their behavior, sadly it's something thats forced upon them when it's too late. After they are caught and have to pay the piper, they are VERY sorry (but hey! I got away with X number of other crimes you can't prove). There is no light at the end of the tunnel and the "new" breed of offenders coming into the prison system are much worst than those of the past. Most "old timers" cooperate because they want to do easy time but the new breed only desire a fearsome reputation among their peers. Too many people can't handle the freedoms this country offers, thats why our prison population continues to grow. If you have poor self discipline, and are a convicted felon how long are you going to be content with flipping hamburgers? You WILL be back in the system! My prison will soon be converting to handle inmate classifications of only four and five's, the worst of the worst. They are for the most part violent and deranged..."Did you have a nice day at work today dear?" :what: The price for freedom isn't paid on the battlefield alone.

Werewolf
July 21, 2005, 11:50 AM
IF I want it and I don't think I will be caught I'll DO IT! That is the common attitude now days, we are by any measure a very permissive society yet we do a poor job of teaching our young how to be legally responsible for their behaviorGood Point...

That said:
Someone - I don't know who - defined HONOR and INTEGRITY as Doing the RIGHT thing even when no one is looking.

Critical concept there. As pointed out in the quote above it is very common to believe it must be OK if one doesn't get caught. HELL! Look at the attitudes of young people today concerning downloading music or software they didn't pay for off the internet. They do not even consider that wrong and no amount of argument can convince them it is.

The concepts of HONOR & INTEGRITY have been forcefully ripped from the fabric of our society. I don't have a clue how that happened nor how we got to where we are today but if we don't get both back then we are truly in a decline that society may never recover from.

TheEgg
July 21, 2005, 11:56 AM
I don't want to have to shot anyone ever.

That said, I will if I have to.

My 'have to' may be different than yours.

BUT, don't get too bent out of shape about some internet posts. Lots of noise in here.

roo_ster
July 21, 2005, 12:28 PM
Our elected representatives say "no," and assign sentence guidelines they think is appropriate after the criminal is caught, in custody, and not currently able to threaten persons or property.

Until the time the BG is in custody, and especially during the comission of a crime, the BG should have no expectation of his own safety or passivity on the part of those he vicitmizes. The BG has already proved that he is willing to break the law to get what he wants. Therefore, the BG is a proven threat.

In my state of residence, if someone walks on to my property at night and proceeds to steal something, I am legally justified in using force to prevent the BG, to include deadly force. This is pulled straight out of the Old Testament. In reality, I would not likely draw down on someone messing with my car in my driveway, though it is legal and moral* to do so. I will not criticize someone who makes the other decision.

OTOH, any BG who enters my house will likely leave in a horizontal position unless all I am quick enough to catch is his back as he is walking out the door with my VCR. I'd let him keep walking. A BG not actively working to leave my home will be considered a deadly threat and dealt with in the appropriate manner.

The reason I would not draw down in the property crime situations described above is not because I'm such a [I]taaaahlerant, compaaaasionate guy thinking about hs faaaaahmily's greif if their choirboy gets his just desserts. It is becasue the financial consequences of rightfully shooting the BG would likely be greater than letting the BG get away with his crime. The replacement cost of my 25" TV, VCR, DVD player, and doorframe are less than $1000, for example. I would file charges & give the police all cooperation, but I might not even report it to my insurance company. This is not the moral response, but since I'm married & have a kid, I can't afford to be quite as principled as I ought. $50,000 in lawyers' fees for a righteous shooting is not a burden I would impose on my family for the sake of my car or society's betterment. Only my family's safety is worth such a risk.

WRT the two threads Old Dog mentioned:

1. The 12yo who ran into traffic bears the responsibility for his actions. Unfortunately for him, he made a poor decision by running into traffic. I am not going to stay up nights weeping over a person who intentionally endangered motorists and then sought to evade responsibility and punishment. I sympathize with the gal who's car he ran in front of.

2. I would not have drawn on the 15yo who was paralyzed by the security guard's shot, for reasons mentioned above. I also am not going to call for the guard's head on a platter for doing his job with zeal.

* It is the moral thing to do if you love your neighbors and would prevent them from being the next ones victimized by the BG.

Kurush
July 21, 2005, 12:45 PM
I agree that the some people are going overboard by cheerleading for dead/paralyzed bad guys, but that said I don't have much sympathy for the bottle rocket kid. Shooting bottle rockets at cars is pretty much the same thing as dropping rocks on them, and kids who do that are almost always working their way up to serious sociopathic crimes.

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