Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Happy to be Texan, not terribly proud

I was born here in Texas and am inexorably tied to many of its traditions and attitudes. Through much therapy and personal reevaluation I have lessened the number of the latter that fall under the strict domain of the crimson collared.

Including our state’s favorite God given right – shooting folks. We love to shoot folks nearly as much as der Fuhrer loved putting ‘em to sleep while he was Guv. Now, thanks in large part to Reep Jeff Wentworth, the fine State Senator from San Antone, we may soon be able to shoot ‘em more often with fewer repercussions.

WooHoo!

See, Wentworth and fellow Reep Jane Nelson of Lewisville have decided that the ability to shoot folks who break into your home uninvited is simply not strong enough. So in their inimitable spindiferous way they have set about to convince folks that a bill they have co-authored merely means that you can shoot intruders in your home easier.

Half of the people are surprised to find we don't already have that right,” Wentworth said.

That’s right Jeff, they are surprised. Because WE DO! This is an example of the great Reep Bullshit Machine in high gear. Here’s the deal. Texas’ laws regarding what is known as Castle Doctrine (a reference to jolly old England and a man’s right to defend his castle) are already some of the broadest in Unmerica. What this bill will actually provide, despite Wentworth and Nelson’s great distraction of Home and Hearth nonsense, is a greater ability to shoot first, ask questions never, and to do so at work, in your car or essentially anywhere in public you feel threatened. That’s right folks, the Wild, Wild West is making a comeback.

(Does anyone else hear an old Marty Robbins song playing in the background, or is that just me?)

“Texans should not have to prove in court that their lives were directly threatened,” Wentworth stated proudly on Wedensday. Damn straight! Why should people who kill someone with a firearm have to prove to some danged old court, (probably run by some activist judge anyway), that they felt threatened? Hell, if’n they say it was a just shootin’ then what right does a court have to question it?

In its currently proposed form the bill would legally establish the assumption that someone criminally entering a person's home, business or vehicle is there to cause death or great bodily harm and would allow potential victims to use any force – including deadly force – in retaliation.

The NRA (National Redneck Association) backs the bill. They refer to them as "stand your ground" laws because they allow possible crime victims who are in a place where they have a right to be to fight back without being second-guessed by courts. Yeah, being second guessed by courts in shooting cases can be a pain in the ass.

According to Zach Ragbourn, a spokesman for the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, Florida (where an identical statute is already in place) is already seeing cases in which people are trying to use the broadness of the law to get away with murder.

"It's tying the courts up in knots," he said.

Imagine that. Where are Artemis Gordon and Jim West when we need ‘em?

6 comments:

litbrit said...

“Texans should not have to prove in court that their lives were directly threatened,” Wentworth stated proudly on Wedensday. Damn straight! Why should people who kill someone with a firearm have to prove to some danged old court, (probably run by some activist judge anyway), that they felt threatened? Hell, if’n they say it was a just shootin’ then what right does a court have to question it?

As a gun-owning Floridian, I must say: This attitude scares the hell out of me. What happened to the notion that deadly force was to be used only as a last resort, and only when there was a clear and present danger posed to one's life (or that of another human being)?

Maadas Hel said...

Thanks litbrit,

What's really scary is how the folks in my state will gobble up the victim's rights spin and make heroes outta Wentworth and Nelson without pausing to notice the far reaches of the bill's true nature or the problems that taking the burden of proof off a shooter for use of deadly force might cause.

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