Monday, April 2, 2012

Another Shot In The Dark

Anybody hear about a 17 year old kid being shot and killed in Sanford, Florida?
Did anybody NOT hear about it? I’ve really heard about enough and I think it’s ridiculous that the left-leaning media and all the “ain’t we got it awful” whiners are using Trayvon Martin’s death to push their gun control and social justice agendas.

However, I may fool some of you with my position on this specific event. Based on what I’ve heard thus far (and I’m sure it’s not the whole truth and nothing but the truth, but I’ll bet it’s pretty close), George Zimmerman was at fault. And, I don’t necessarily think it was a racist deal. My gut tells me that Zimmerman would have pursued the kid regardless of color. And, if a guy in plain clothes jumps out of an unmarked vehicle and starts chasing me, I might have reacted the same way Trayvon Martin reacted. There’s just no way to make Trayvon Martin look like the bad guy here. Zimmerman was told by the police, not to pursue, and he ignored the order. Sounds to me like an over-zealous, wanna-be cop just figuring that this tall person in a hoodie needed to be checked out. When Trayvon didn’t stop and raise his hands (and I don’t blame him for not stopping and raising his hands), it turned into a chase, a fight and a deadly shooting. All senseless and all on George Zimmerman. To all my fellow rednecks out there, I’m sorry but that’s how I see it. And, yes, Zimmerman should have been arrested.

Now for the collateral damage report. Once again the progressives will go after gun owners, their rights to carry guns, various “stand your ground” laws and the inherent racism that infects all us “gun people”. As usual, they will take a situation that could be used as a real, albeit tragic, teaching moment and turn into a political fuse. It’s so sad.

What we should be talking about is educating citizens (that would include appointed neighborhood watchers as well as the rest of us) about what we should and should not do when we see suspicious activity. Don’t try to get in my head and guilt me about what I may consider suspicious activity. Just make sure I respond appropriately when I think I see it. For most of us, it’s not about race. It’s about experience and observation. (For example, I am very much inclined to be suspicious of a tatted up white guy with meth mouth.) I don’t know if I would have been suspicious of Trayvon Martin or any tall guy in a hoodie, regardless of their race. It would depend on the situation. I doubt that I would have called the police even if I had been suspicious. Again, it would depend on the situation. I definitely know that I would not have chased him down and put us both in danger.

The progressives will argue that if Zimmerman had not been carrying a gun, he probably would not have pursued Martin and he sure as heck would not have shot him. But their argument is hollow. There are simply way too many instances where a citizen with a gun has saved himself or someone else from death or serious injury. And no one knows the degree to which the threat of an armed homeowner, keeps the bad guys from kicking down the door. But because we are missing the real point of the Trayvon Martin tragedy; over-zealous wanna-be cops and well-intentioned, sometimes well-armed citizens will continue to step over the line and do something really stupid and often deadly.

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