A Public Defender Shares Thoughts of Race

Allen West shared this article and I would really like to hear some thoughts about his article. I do have to say that I know plenty of people of all races that show the behaviors, attitudes and mentality he talks about. Its interesting how I hadn’t thought about their behaviors etc until I read this. No matter what gender, race or ethnicity – I find these things very irritating. Seems to me that he is making very broad assumptions about entire races and genders based on his experiences, but I guess in some ways we all do that to some degree. We all see things from our perspective and our life experiences.

This is the post – feel free to share your thoughts below…

Confessions of a Public Defender

Michael Smith, American Renaissance, May 9, 2014

Still liberal after all these years.

I am a public defender in a large southern metropolitan area. Fewer than ten percent of the people in the area I serve are black but over 90 per cent of my clients are black. The remaining ten percent are mainly Hispanics but there are a few whites.

I have no explanation for why this is, but crime has racial patterns. Hispanics usually commit two kinds of crime: sexual assault on children and driving under the influence. Blacks commit many violent crimes but very few sex crimes. The handful of whites I see commit all kinds of crimes. In my many years as a public defender I have represented only three Asians, and one was half black.

As a young lawyer, I believed the official story that blacks are law abiding, intelligent, family-oriented people, but are so poor they must turn to crime to survive. Actual black behavior was a shock to me.

The media invariably sugarcoat black behavior. Even the news reports of the very crimes I dealt with in court were slanted. Television news intentionally leaves out unflattering facts about the accused, and sometimes omits names that are obviously black. All this rocked my liberal, tolerant beliefs, but it took me years to set aside my illusions and accept the reality of what I see every day. I have now served thousands of blacks and their families, protecting their rights and defending them in court. What follow are my observations.

Although blacks are only a small percentage of our community, the courthouse is filled with them: the halls and gallery benches are overflowing with black defendants, families, and crime victims. Most whites with business in court arrive quietly, dress appropriately, and keep their heads down. They get in and get out–if they can–as fast as they can. For blacks, the courthouse is like a carnival. They all seem to know each other: hundreds and hundreds each day, gossiping, laughing loudly, waving, and crowding the halls.

When I am appointed to represent a client I introduce myself and explain that I am his lawyer. I explain the court process and my role in it, and I ask the client some basic questions about himself. At this stage, I can tell with great accuracy how people will react. Hispanics are extremely polite and deferential. An Hispanic will never call me by my first name and will answer my questions directly and with appropriate respect for my position. Whites are similarly respectful.

A black man will never call me Mr. Smith; I am always “Mike.” It is not unusual for a 19-year-old black to refer to me as “dog.” A black may mumble complaints about everything I say, and roll his eyes when I politely interrupt so I can continue with my explanation. Also, everything I say to blacks must be at about the third-grade level. If I slip and use adult language, they get angry because they think I am flaunting my superiority.

At the early stages of a case, I explain the process to my clients. I often do not yet have the information in the police reports. Blacks are unable to understand that I do not yet have answers to all of their questions, but that I will by a certain date. They live in the here and the now and are unable to wait for anything. Usually, by the second meeting with the client I have most of the police reports and understand their case.

Unlike people of other races, blacks never see their lawyer as someone who is there to help them. I am a part of the system against which they are waging war. They often explode with anger at me and are quick to blame me for anything that goes wrong in their case.

Black men often try to trip me up and challenge my knowledge of the law or the facts of the case. I appreciate sincere questions about the elements of the offense or the sentencing guidelines, but blacks ask questions to test me. Unfortunately, they are almost always wrong in their reading, or understanding, of the law, and this can cause friction. I may repeatedly explain the law, and provide copies of the statute showing, for example, why my client must serve six years if convicted, but he continues to believe that a hand-written note from his “cellie” is controlling law.

The risks of trial

The Constitution allows a defendant to make three crucial decisions in his case. He decides whether to plea guilty or not guilty. He decides whether to have a bench trial or a jury trial. He decides whether he will testify or whether he will remain silent. A client who insists on testifying is almost always making a terrible mistake, but I cannot stop him.

Most blacks are unable to speak English well. They cannot conjugate verbs. They have a poor grasp of verb tenses. They have a limited vocabulary. They cannot speak without swearing. They often become hostile on the stand. Many, when they testify, show a complete lack of empathy and are unable to conceal a morality based on the satisfaction of immediate, base needs. This is a disaster, especially in a jury trial. Most jurors are white, and are appalled by the demeanor of uneducated, criminal blacks.

Prosecutors are delighted when a black defendant takes the stand. It is like shooting fish in a barrel. However, the defense usually gets to cross-examine the black victim, who is likely to make just as bad an impression on the stand as the defendant. This is an invaluable gift to the defense, because jurors may not convict a defendant—even if they think he is guilty—if they dislike the victim even more than they dislike the defendant.

Most criminal cases do not go to trial. Often the evidence against the accused is overwhelming, and the chances of conviction are high. The defendant is better off with a plea bargain: pleading guilty to a lesser charge and getting a lighter sentence.

The decision to plea to a lesser charge turns on the strength of the evidence. When blacks ask the ultimate question—”Will we win at trial?”—I tell them I cannot know, but I then describe the strengths and weaknesses of our case. The weaknesses are usually obvious: There are five eyewitnesses against you. Or, you made a confession to both the detective and your grandmother. They found you in possession of a pink cell phone with a case that has rhinestones spelling the name of the victim of the robbery. There is a video of the murderer wearing the same shirt you were wearing when you were arrested, which has the words “In Da Houz” on the back, not to mention you have the same “RIP Pookie 7/4/12” tattoo on your neck as the man in the video. Etc.

If you tell a black man that the evidence is very harmful to his case, he will blame you. “You ain’t workin’ fo’ me.” “It like you workin’ with da State.” Every public defender hears this. The more you try to explain the evidence to a black man, the angrier he gets. It is my firm belief many black are unable to discuss the evidence against them rationally because they cannot view things from the perspective of others. They simply cannot understand how the facts in the case will appear to a jury.

This inability to see things from someone else’s perspective helps explain why there are so many black criminals. They do not understand the pain they are inflicting on others. One of my robbery clients is a good example. He and two co-defendants walked into a small store run by two young women. All three men were wearing masks. They drew handguns and ordered the women into a back room. One man beat a girl with his gun. The second man stood over the second girl while the third man emptied the cash register. All of this was on video.

My client was the one who beat the girl. When he asked me, “What are our chances at trial?” I said, “Not so good.” He immediately got angry, raised his voice, and accused me of working with the prosecution. I asked him how he thought a jury would react to the video. “They don’t care,” he said. I told him the jury would probably feel deeply sympathetic towards these two women and would be angry at him because of how he treated them. I asked him whether he felt bad for the women he had beaten and terrorized. He told me what I suspected—what too many blacks say about the suffering of others: “What do I care? She ain’t me. She ain’t kin. Don’t even know her.”

No fathers

As a public defender, I have learned many things about people. One is that defendants do not have fathers. If a black even knows the name of his father, he knows of him only as a shadowy person with whom he has absolutely no ties. When a client is sentenced, I often beg for mercy on the grounds that the defendant did not have a father and never had a chance in life. I have often tracked down the man’s father–in jail–and have brought him to the sentencing hearing to testify that he never knew his son and never lifted a finger to help him. Often, this is the first time my client has ever met his father. These meetings are utterly unemotional.

Many black defendants don’t even have mothers who care about them. Many are raised by grandmothers after the state removes the children from an incompetent teenaged mother. Many of these mothers and grandmothers are mentally unstable, and are completely disconnected from the realities they face in court and in life. A 47-year-old grandmother will deny that her grandson has gang ties even though his forehead is tattooed with a gang sign or slogan. When I point this out in as kind and understanding way as I can, she screams at me. When black women start screaming, they invoke the name of Jesus and shout swear words in the same breath.

Black women have great faith in God, but they have a twisted understanding of His role. They do not pray for strength or courage. They pray for results: the satisfaction of immediate needs. One of my clients was a black woman who prayed in a circle with her accomplices for God’s protection from the police before they would set out to commit a robbery.

The mothers and grandmothers pray in the hallways–not for justice, but for acquittal. When I explain that the evidence that their beloved child murdered the shop keeper is overwhelming, and that he should accept the very fair plea bargain I have negotiated, they will tell me that he is going to trial and will “ride with the Lord.” They tell me they speak to God every day and He assures them that the young man will be acquitted.

The mothers and grandmothers do not seem to be able to imagine and understand the consequences of going to trial and losing. Some–and this is a shocking reality it took me a long time to grasp–don’t really care what happens to the client, but want to make it look as though they care. This means pounding their chests in righteous indignation, and insisting on going to trial despite terrible evidence. They refuse to listen to the one person–me–who has the knowledge to make the best recommendation. These people soon lose interest in the case, and stop showing up after about the third or fourth court date. It is then easier for me to convince the client to act in his own best interests and accept a plea agreement.

Part of the problem is that underclass black women begin having babies at age 15. They continue to have babies, with different black men, until they have had five or six. These women do not go to school. They do not work. They are not ashamed to live on public money. They plan their entire lives around the expectation that they will always get free money and never have to work. I do not see this among whites, Hispanics, or any other people.

The black men who become my clients also do not work. They get social security disability payments for a mental defect or for a vague and invisible physical ailment. They do not pay for anything: not for housing (Grandma lives on welfare and he lives with her), not for food (Grandma and the baby-momma share with him), and not for child support. When I learn that my 19-year-old defendant does not work or go to school, I ask, “What do you do all day?” He smiles. “You know, just chill.” These men live in a culture with no expectations, no demands, and no shame.

If you tell a black to dress properly for trial, and don’t give specific instructions, he will arrive in wildly inappropriate clothes. I represented a woman who was on trial for drugs; she wore a baseball cap with a marijuana leaf embroidered on it. I represented a man who wore a shirt that read “rules are for suckers” to his probation hearing. Our office provides suits, shirts, ties, and dresses for clients to wear for jury trials. Often, it takes a whole team of lawyers to persuade a black to wear a shirt and tie instead of gang colors.

Marijuana

From time to time the media report that although blacks are 12 percent of the population they are 40 percent of the prison population. This is supposed to be an outrage that results from unfair treatment by the criminal justice system. What the media only hint at is another staggering reality: recidivism. Black men are arrested and convicted over and over. It is typical for a black man to have five felony convictions before the age of 30. This kind of record is rare among whites and Hispanics, and probably even rarer among Asians.

Stats

At one time our office was looking for a motto that defined our philosophy. Someone joked that it should be: “Doesn’t everyone deserve an eleventh chance?”

I am a liberal. I believe that those of us who are able to produce abundance have a moral duty to provide basic food, shelter, and medical care for those who cannot care for themselves. I believe we have this duty even to those who can care for themselves but don’t. This world view requires compassion and a willingness to act on it.

My experience has taught me that we live in a nation in which a jury is more likely to convict a black defendant who has committed a crime against a white. Even the dullest of blacks know this. There would be a lot more black-on-white crime if this were not the case.

However, my experience has also taught me that blacks are different by almost any measure to all other people. They cannot reason as well. They cannot communicate as well. They cannot control their impulses as well. They are a threat to all who cross their paths, black and non-black alike.

I do not know the solution to this problem. I do know that it is wrong to deceive the public. Whatever solutions we seek should be based on the truth rather than what we would prefer was the truth. As for myself, I will continue do my duty to protect the rights of all who need me.

TOPICS: , , 

Originally published at – http://www.amren.com/features/2014/05/confessions-of-a-public-defender/

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NFL Gets it Right on Domestic Violence Among Players

BREAKING NEWS — The Baltimore Ravens have terminated the contract of running back Ray Rice, the team announced today, the same day a shocking video surfaced showing the NFL star punching his then-fiancee in February. 

If you don’t know why this happened – let me share a report by CNN.

My next question is WHY did she marry him after this attack and when can she get the help she needs. This is an article that I thought had some disturbing information about her, their relationship, his trial and their marriage – http://www.playerwives.com/nfl/baltimore-ravens/ray-rices-girlfriend-janay-palmer/

Ray Rice terminated after newly released video shows NFL star punch fiancee

(Video posted here http://www.cnn.com/video/data/2.0/video/sports/2014/09/08/nr-vo-ray-rice-elevator-video.cnn-tmz.html)

The Baltimore Ravens have terminated the contract of running back Ray Rice, the team announced Monday, the same day a shocking video surfaced showing the NFL star punching his then-fiancee in February.

The news release from the NFL team was terse.

“The Baltimore Ravens terminated the contract of RB Ray Rice this afternoon,” it read.

Rice had been suspended by the league for the first two games of the season, a controversial move that led to widespread criticism and to the league re-evaluating the punishment for domestic violence cases.

The new video shows Rice punching Janay Palmer, who is now his wife, inside an elevator at a hotel in Atlantic City, New Jersey, seven months ago.

TMZ Sports posted the video Monday showing Rice and Palmer entering an elevator. Inside the elevator, Rice punches Palmer. Palmer lunges after Rice, and then Rice hits her back and she falls to the floor.

Previously, TMZ Sports had released hotel surveillance video of Rice dragging an unconscious Palmer out of the elevator. This is the first time video has been released that shows Rice punching her.

A few months after the incident, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell suspended Rice without pay and fined him an additional game check for “conduct detrimental to the NFL.” However, no one in the NFL offices, including Goodell, had seen the newly released footage of the incident until Monday, the league told CNN.

Ray Rice: ‘My actions were inexcusable’

“We requested from law enforcement any and all information about the incident, including the video from inside the elevator,” NFL senior vice president of communications Greg Aiello said. “That video was not made available to us and no one in our office has seen it until today.”

The NFL has previously said that Rice entered a pretrial intervention program in May. Under the program, he won’t be prosecuted, and the charges will be expunged after one year.

In a press conference in July, Rice said his actions were “inexcusable” and that he and his wife are in counseling.

“We’re taking the necessary steps to move forward,” he said. “My job is to lead my family. My job is to lead my wife. My job is to lead in whatever I do. And If I’m not being the example, then my family crumbles.”

Goodell has already been scrutinized for suspending Rice for just two games, months after the first video aired. Many felt the suspension wasn’t enough, and in August, the commissioner himself agreed.

In a letter to all NFL team owners, he said the league had fallen short of its goals in its handling of the Rice case: “We allowed our standards to fall below where they should be and lost an important opportunity to emphasize our strong stance on a critical issue and the effective programs we have in place.”

“I didn’t get it right. Simply put, we have to do better. And we will,” he added.

Some NFL fans have questioned why Ravens head coach John Harbaugh would call Rice “one heck of a guy,” and why the Ravens would tweet out “Janay Rice says she deeply regrets the role that she played the night of the incident.”

They have also questioned why Cleveland Browns receiver Josh Gordon would be suspended for a year after testing positive for marijuana when Rice was suspended for just two games.

In his August letter to team owners, Goodell said the league will institute a six-game unpaid suspension for personnel who violate the league’s personal conduct policy when it relates to domestic violence. A second domestic violence incident would be punished by a lifetime ban from the league.

The article was originally posted here – http://www.cnn.com/2014/09/08/us/ray-rice-new-video/index.html

Melanie’s Memorial

1185570_10201717732016090_1739868780_nLemoore, CA was quiet on the morning of Friday, September 13, 2013.  A pall hung over the line of mourners waiting to enter South Valley Community Church.  Morning sun highlighted silent tears that streamed down drawn cheeks.  White tissues fluttered in the barely-there breeze, a stark contrast to the dark clothing of grief.  Everyone wanted to be there to honor Melanie Pate, a 42 year old mother, who was loved by so many—no one wanted to be there to say goodbye to the vibrant young woman.  It was too final, an end to her story, much too soon.

But, that’s where grief misleads us.  Melanie’s story is not over.  She leaves behind a handsome son to carry on her legacy.  Karter is young, only 12 years old, but, as a talented pitcher on the Grizzlies, he is already ensconced in Melanie’s world of baseball.  Melanie was an integral part of the Cal Ripkin League.  Until two years ago, she served on the Board of Directors of Hanford Youth Baseball.  As a parent volunteer, she served countless hours as scorekeeper.  Friends describe Melanie as a “firecracker,” always on the go, always defending and encouraging the kids no matter which team they were on227991_227190563964777_3626138_n.

“She had such a love for the kids,” said Glenda Champlin of Hanford, state commissioner for Babe Ruth baseball.  “She loved her son, but she loved every child equally when they were out on the ball field.”

Mike Caudillo, state commissioner for Central Valley Cal Ripkin, said Melanie volunteered as scorekeeper for tournaments around the Valley.  “She was really good at it,” he said.  “She liked doing it and everyone liked her.  It was a natural for her.”

My cousin, Linda Sue Lawrence, Melanie’s mother and Karter’s grandma, will continue Melanie’s baseball journey with Karter.  Maybe not as scorekeeper, but most certainly as a cheerleader for her favorite pitcher.  May God grant Linda strength and courage.  It’s not easy to carry on with a broken heart, but she will for Karter.

Yes, tears flowed in the church as a recording of Garth Brooks carried over the mourners who filled the sanctuary, including the balcony.  We sobbed as the pastor mentioned the senseless murder of Melanie by her husband, Todd Pate.  But, he encouraged us not to ask why.  Why a marriage of 22 years ended in such tragedy.  Why a husband, who had vowed to love and honor his wife, would kill her so mercilessly.  Why a mother must be left bereft without her loving daughter.  Why a young son is left without his mother, or his father, who is in custody pending trial.  Sometimes it’s not for us to know, but just to be reassured that God has the answers, and we must turn to Him for comfort.

Grief makes us appear small, as we curl into ourselves in an unconscious act of protection.  I wanted to enfold my cousin, Linda, in my arms and give her some small reserve of my strength.  I wanted to encourage her, but what can you say?  All we can do is offer love and prayers, and really, isn’t that the best gift of all?

I love you, Linda, and pray for you and Karter daily.  Our Lord will sustain you. 

Sandra Kay

To Those I Love and Those Who Loved Me

When I am gone, release me. Let me go
I have so many things to see and do.
You mustn’t tie yourself to me with tears, Be
happy, we had so many years.

I gave you my love and you can only guess
How much you gave to me in happiness.
I thank you for the love you each have shown
But now it’s time I traveled alone.

So grieve a while for me if grieve you must
Then let your grief be comforted by trust.
It’s only for a while that we must part
So bless those memories in your heart.

I won’t be far away for life goes on
So if you need me , call and I will come.
Though you can’t see or touch me, I’ll be near
with all my love around you soft and clear.

And then, when you must come this way alone,
I’ll greet you with a smile and “Welcome You
Home”.

Author: Unknown

Should a Child Abuser be Outed in Their Obituary

A Facebook friend shared this – and it has obviously stirred up a controversy.

Marianne Theresa Johnson-Reddick’s children finally got the chance to say their peace to the world about the abuse heaped on them by her mother. It seems this obituary and the fact her children felt they needed to do this – should be a cautionary tale for any abuser.

For any person who feels its okay to abuse and torment others – this woman had her children taken away years ago, they testified to Congress to help pass legislation, she was estranged from her children for over 3 decades and lived alone in a mobile home with 15 cats. I have 2 cats of my own and lived in a single wide mobile home as a kid. So I can somewhat imagine what it would be like to live alone in a trailer with 15 cats – that really doesn’t seem like an existence to aspire to…. read on to see what you think.

Family Publishes Scathing Death Notice of Abusive Mom

“Everyone she met, adult or child was tortured by her cruelty and exposure to violence, criminal activity, vulgarity, and hatred of the gentle or kind human spirit,” the obit said. “Our greatest wish now is to stimulate a national movement that mandates a purposeful and dedicated war against child abuse in the United States of America.” 

Six of Johnson-Reddick’s eight children were admitted to the Nevada Children’s Home from 1963 to 1964 after they endured regular beatings, sometimes with a metal-tipped belt, and other abuse at the hands of their mother, Patrick Reddick said. He said he’s had phone calls from “all over the world” about the obituary. 

“Everything in there was completely true,” he told the Associated Press on Thursday, describing her as a “wicked, wicked witch.” 

He said they wanted to “shame her a little bit” but that the “main purpose for putting it in there was to bring awareness to child abuse … shame child abuse overall.” 

“People doing that right now, they can read that obit and think,” said Patrick Reddick, who last saw his mother more than three decades ago.

http://www.people.com/people/article/0,,20734428,00.html

Murder too Close to Home

Melanie PateThis is a very sad post for me to write.  Melanie Pate, my cousin’s daughter, was slain yesterday by her husband.  As you can see from the picture she was a beautiful woman, but you would have to know her personally to see how beautiful she was on the inside.

Melanie was just 42 years old; a mother of two.  Few details are available, yet, but her husband, Todd Pate, 50, called the Hanford Police Dept. to report that he had just killed his wife.  When authorities arrived at the home, they found Mel in the backyard pool, with throat lacerations.  She was pronounced dead at the scene.  Her husband was arrested and booked into the King’s County Jail.  He was charged with criminal homicide.

There had not been prior calls to the home for domestic abuse, so what happened on this day?  Everything is confusing right now.  We only know for sure that a beautiful young woman is no longer with her family.  Her kids have lost their mother, and their father will surely go to prison.  My cousin has lost a daughter, whom she was very close to.  The entire family is in shock.

I just saw Mel in July when I drove up to the Hanford area to attend her aunt’s funeral.  My eyes fill with tears when I think that this vibrant person is gone forever from this earth.  We will see her again in heaven.

A candlelight vigil is planned for Wednesday evening.

http://www.hanfordsentinel.com/hanford-woman-murdered-by-husband/article_9b9c1e6e-141f-11e3-9b74-001a4bcf887a.html

Yale Addresses Rape with a Written Reprimand

Yale saying they will ignore rape is unbelievable to me. Far too many college campuses have stated or understood policies that ignore rape.

Does this remind anyone else of the frat brothers at Yale who chanted “No means Yes. Yes means Anal”?

“Nonconsensual sex-havers” – Are they kidding??

Yale Officially Declares ‘Nonconsensual Sex’ Not That Big of a Deal

The word “rape” does not factor into Yale’s new report on how the university is handling sexual misconduct; instead, the act is described as “nonconsensual sex,” and it’s usually punishable by “written reprimand.” (Sometimes rapists have to spend some time thinking about respect!) According to the report, five of the six people Yale identified as nonconsensual sex-havers over the past six months either graduated without much stress or will be returning to campus in the fall.

The 2011 federal Title IX investigation into Yale ended with a voluntary resolution agreement between the University and the DOE’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR); Yale didn’t face any disciplinary action for creating a “hostile sexual environment,” but was required to implement new grievance procedures and report to the OCR until May 31, 2014. The university has made some great structural changes, said Alexandra Brodsky (’12 LAW ’16), one of the 16 students and alumni who filed a Title IX complaint, but this most recent report shows that “very little has changed.”

“In Sept I’m returning to a campus where, just like when I was a freshman, rape is addressed with ‘written reprimands,'” she tweeted. “What lovely Yale traditions: the Game, Mory’s Cups, administrative tolerance for rape.”

Click here to read the full article – http://jezebel.com/yale-officially-declares-nonconsensual-sex-not-that-b-988475927

~*~

On the other hand the article states that “Duke recently revised its sexual assault guidelines: starting in the fall, the preferred disciplinary sanction for students responsible for sexual assault will be expulsion.” Why do other college campuses not understand this is the action they should take against people found to be guilty of rape? Rape is not only “non consensual sex” – it is a crime and must be treated that way.

I am aware that often star athletes on the campuses seem to be the people accused of rape – but the fact that athletics bring in big money should NOT be an excuse to ignore a crime. Can we all say – Jerry Sandusky? Abuse is abuse – whether it is a child or a woman and the person responsible must be punished.

Years ago I was raped and I know how insecure I felt in my own home and I knew exactly where the man lived and had to pass by his front door every day when I left my home. I cannot imagine how a student, away from home and her support system would handle a similar situation. Knowing she could run into him and his friends anywhere on campus at any time.

College administrators, security officers, professors, coaches, alumni and others need to protect rape survivors. I won’t call them victims – they are survivors and they need to know they will get the support and help they need.

Would you like to read the full report? Click here – Yale University Report of Complaints of Sexual Misconduct Brought forward from January 1, 2013 through June 30, 2013

This is an example of one of the reports and the action taken –

A YC student brought a formal complaint to the UWC charging that two YC students had engaged in nonconsensual sex with her. The UWC found a violation of the University’s sexual misconduct policy. Written reprimands were issued to the respondents and measures were taken to limit contact between the parties.
Update: The complainant reported a possible violation of the nocontact order by one of the respondents. The Title IX Coordinator investigated and found no violation of the order.

 

 

Should Stand Your Ground Be Changed

BREAKING NEWS – Attorney General Eric Holder called for doing away with “stand your ground” self-defense laws, telling the NAACP the statutes “sow dangerous conflict in our neighborhoods” and allow “violent situations to escalate in public.”

My Thoughts –

I agree that the law as written is bad — I also agree that it needs to be changed. Since this law was not used in the Zimmerman defense, that case should not be drug into the discussion although people will continue to link it to George Zimmerman. But I have an alternative idea on what should be done about the stand your ground laws….

How about we modify the law that we have the right to “Stand Our Ground” in our own homes and on our own property? Its way too easy to misconstrue in a public situation, but in my home is different to me. My home has been broken into twice – actually where I lived in Harrisonburg – but I should have the ability and right to protect myself and my home. Seems its called private property for a reason…

One of the break ins results in sleepless nights since the thief bent the edge of my door so it couldn’t be locked for a time. And the second break in resulted in me being assaulted by a neighbor. If I’d had a gun or another weapon nearby – I would’ve used it on him and its very unlikely that I would’ve felt bad about it. That was almost 20 years ago and I still don’t feel I’d hesitate to hurt him.

There should also be a provision in the law – even if it is proven that you are protecting yourself in your home or in another area – that you can be prosecuted for extreme circumstances. This comes to mind since the Jodi Arias trial is still fresh in my mind. I do NOT believe she was defending herself at all. But even if someone in a similar situation was defending themselves, shooting the person in the head and stabbing them almost 30 times IS EXCESSIVE and should make the jurors and the police dig deeper. But if I say any more about that, I’m likely to go off on a long rant 🙂