Constitution Cowboy

Monday, December 27, 2004

What Is Disparity Of Force?

In some states, you can be charged with a crime if you defend yourself with "too much force". It is nothing more than Prudence! It is bringing the best defense with you. It is being what the Constitution assures you the impunity to be...PREPARED! (That is what the Second Amendment is all about - being prepared.)

Pragmatism is called for here, not level of force. The desired end is to have the means to defend one's self and family from any force bent on harm. How much "reckless disregard for life" should one have to put up with before he halts the reckless disregard for life his attackers are dispensing all over him?

I've only got one defensive weapon on me most of the time. I don't have the luxury of carrying one for each "level" of threat being foisted upon me, nor do I think I (or many of the rest of us) have the luxury of time to decide which level to apply, hoping the perp doesn't raise the level of threat when you start defending yourself with a weapon inferior to what he pulls out after you get started!

I'll defend myself and family with extreme prejudice. I don't go to the mall with a Mini Cooper, a sedan, and an SUV. I cover all my options with the tool that will cover it all. I take the SUV to the mall. Call it prudence. Call it practical. Call it common sense. You can't call it unprepared!



  • I think there can definitely be too much force used in certain circumstanes and it's the circumstances which dictate the force.

    For example; if the bum on the street walks up and asks for money and you kill him, that's too much force because it's not reasonable to feel that your life was in danger by his conduct (at least not in this basic hypothetical situation).

    On the other hand, if he pulls a knife and says, "give me money or I'll cut your throat," then deadly force may be reasonable.

    I'm personally armed most places that I go but I consider that level of force to be the last resort. The concept of using the appropriate level of force is to keep idiots from carrying concealed and then killing the first guy that pisses them off (which is what anti-gun and anti-concealed carry people argued would be happening daily before most states passed concealed carry laws).

    By Blogger Nerk, at December 28, 2004 at 10:20 AM  

  • That is the clincher, Nerk. It's self defense, not self justice. Even the cops only carry for self defense, not intimidation or enforcement. You don't see them shooting people in the back as they run away. The cops chase them down and tackle them.


    By Blogger Woody, at December 28, 2004 at 11:17 AM  

  • I agree with you, Woody. Issues with "too much force" is what our friends across the pond are dealing with right now. Personally I think the rights of an attacker are temporarily suspended while in commission of the act. I can't say the law always agrees with me.

    It's my opinion rapists, home invaiders, bank/store robbers, carjackers, muggers, and child molesters should be shot on sight, in the commission of their acts or afterwards. We've all had to become "legislatively-aware laypersons" these days with the multitude of restrictive and contradictory gun laws on the books.

    I don't carry less-than-lethal weapons. I usually have my gun and always a sharp clippy knife. Granted, when all you've got is a hammer, every problem starts to look like a nail, so we gunnies have to caution ourselves to overreacting. If you've never "seen the beast" (like me) you don't know how you'll react or whether or not it would be deemed appropriate later. However, I know that if I feel threatened, I will also defend myself with extreme prejudice and worry about the consequences later.

    If you've read Massad Ayoob's In The Gravest Extreme, you know most times it's all about HOW you tell the story anyways, and you can expect a civil suit ANY time you use a gun in self-defense; so you might as well get used to the idea and quit worrying about it.


    By Blogger MobileSuitPilotX, at December 28, 2004 at 2:48 PM  

  • To add:

    Nobody really knows how extensive an attack will be until it's over. I don't want to wait to find out. How can you know for sure if a guy is just going to punch you once or twice and leave you alone or beat you to death? So how can anybody say any reaction is too much? There is a lot of gray area in the laws makes self-defense and escalating a situation by inserting a firearm into the equation look a lot the same.


    By Blogger MobileSuitPilotX, at December 28, 2004 at 2:54 PM  

  • I'm completely in agreement that when deadly force is necessary, you use deadly force. If you're justified in using deadly force, you won't have to justify it - it won't be an issue (I'm talking about criminal charges - Justin is right in that there will likely be a civil suit in any shooting).

    But there has to be a legitimate threat before deadly force is justified. If a guy threatens to color you with a yellow highlighter, you're not justified in making his face into a donut with your hand-cannon. But if your (or your family's) life is threatened, then deadly force becomes appropriate. However, not expecting someone who kills someone to articulate a reason for doing it would be nuts. I'm always armed and if I kill someone, I won't be offended if someone asks me why.

    Now, with that being said, I believe there are times when anti-gun wackos will try to prosecute someone who defended themselves not because they weren't justified in what they did, but because it furthers the agenda of the anti-gun lobbies. That's when it stops being an issue of justifying the use of deadly force and starts being a situation where you're having to defend yourself for using deadly force when it was justified. That is wrong. In those situations, my views are consistent with what you all have been posting.

    By Blogger Nerk, at December 28, 2004 at 3:34 PM  

  • Hi - You have a great blog. I have a webpage about self defense technique I'd like you to visit. Here's the link

    By Blogger Erik Mann, at October 24, 2005 at 11:28 PM  

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