Caught this article by NPR being waved around in the CSGV’s Facebook page. Unfortunately for NPR and the author Suevon Lee, at least two of the cases are not Stand Your Ground but straight Castle Doctrine.
Now, the author is not just some CSGV intern sucking on a Big Gulp and tweeting from a list of talking points given by Josh or Ladd. She is both a journalist and a lawyer according to her mini-bio which makes me believe she either did not do her due diligence before engaging in podiatry tasting or is an anti gun activist. Chances are she is the former due to her political views lead her to accept the Anti Gun propaganda as Gospel.
Just because one is giving information wrong on purpose and the other one does it by laziness, it does not mean that we as gun owners are exonerated if we act according to that information and then we find ourselves wearing steel jewelry sitting in the back of a patrol car.
If anything, Stand Your Ground is a legal protection AFTER the incident has occurred and a prosecutor decides to prosecute because you defended yourself. It does not mean you can dispose of common sense and not fleeing you have the chance, but that you have perceived a reasonable danger and fleeing is not a wise decision but a full-fledged physical attack has not occurred yet such as a bad guy running towards you with a knife or club or he is nearby and in the process of drawing a weapon. A prosecutor can easily Monday Morning quarterback your actions if you live in a state with Duty to Retreat by saying that the attack had not happened yet and you had a chance to escape; it is then for you to prove that the escape was simply not possible or the consequences would have been too great against you. Again, it is for you to prove that you did the right thing which is hard to do in a trial and, if you are luck, the jury will see it that way and you will only have lost about a year’s worth of peace and owe six figures to your lawyer. If you are not lucky, I hope you enjoy wearing orange rompers. Stand Your Ground will cut down on what basically amounts to prosecutorial misconduct and allows you to get back to your life the soonest but it does not give a gun owner the power to basically do a “High Noon – Skin that hogleg pardner” shoot out in the middle of the street.
Yet that is exactly what is being repeated ad-nauseam in the press. Unfortunately there are people acting on a combination of stupid machismo and this misinformation with results like this idiot in Texas that is now on his way to a well deserved second degree murder trial. He had plenty of chances to de-escalate by just leaving his front yard and going inside the house, but he chose poorly by letting his ego get in the way and probably a false idea of what Stand Your Ground really means.
So, Are we to blame the Media for misinforming the public? Yes, they have a responsibility to seek the truth but they simply do not care about it or have their own bias injected in it. They won’t come out straight and say it as they will hide behind the statements from Brady and the Usual Suspects, but it works the same. Can we do something about it? Very little. I am done trying to politely inform them of the inadequacies of their reporting as they ignore them and go back to the standard ideological anti-gun fare. Some have had better luck with a precious few reporters and even more scarce are those reporters who have seen the light and are now telling the truth, Emily Miller being one of them. As for the rest, it is like the tale of the Scorpion and the Frog, you know how that is gonna end. However, that does not mean we do not engage them and call them on their lies. And we do this not to see if we convince them but to inform other readers of the pitfalls that they can be subjected if they only take the journo’s version of what Stand Your Ground. If there is no opposing voice, an uninformed reader will default into believing what was printed or shown on TV is the truth and act accordingly.
As for Gun Owners, it is our responsibility to research the law even more dedication that we do our shooting. And research does not mean just to listen or read a second-hand account but actually go to the source and check with professionals on the subject. Always remember that just because somebody has a title like lawyer or police officer means they are well-informed on a matter as delicate as self-defense. Seek the ones that deal in this subject day in and day out and have a proven track record, not the guy that appears during the commercial breaks in daytime TV and can be contacted at 1-800-I-SHYSTER.