Home » Opinion » Editorials
Shooting first: Fear and the 'stand your ground' law
For those who irrationally fear guns, evidence and data are irrelevant. The use of firearms is to be restricted and curtailed to the greatest extent legally possible regardless of the consequences - because guns are scary things. That impulse is the motivating force behind House Bill 135, to repeal the "stand your ground" law.
Thankfully, the House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee removed the two worst parts of HB 135. One would have undone the "Ward Bird" law, which clarifies that merely brandishing a weapon is not a criminal use of deadly force. The other would have made people who use deadly force in self-defense civilly liable for injuries caused when protecting themselves from imminent harm. Still, the bill should not pass.
Testifying against the "stand your ground" legislation in 2011, Associate Attorney General Ann Rice said, "Historically, this committee's first question is 'What problem is this bill trying to address?' If you apply that question to these three bills, there is no problem that needs fixing."
Applying that standard to the law now would generate the conclusion Rice came to in 2011: "there is no problem that needs fixing." We do not have shootouts in bars and restaurants by gunslingers whom the law has emboldened. That is because responsible New Hampshire gun owners are not bloodthirsty desperados itching to kill, which is how so many legislators seem to imagine them. Repealing this law now would be a premature and irrational act based on fear and mistrust. It would be the legislative equivalent of shooting first, asking questions later. How ironic if the bil passes.
READER COMMENTS: 0
- St. Anselm hockey eyes Division I - 1
- Franklin Pierce to play Shippensburg in Div. II baseball World Series - 0
- Franklin Pierce wins NCAA baseball regional - 1
- College Baseball: Ravens outlast Penmen in 13 to survive another day - 0
- NCAA Baseball: Penmen win again - 0
- College Baseball: Mathieu, FPU cruise in NCAAs - 0
- College Roundup: SNHU rolls in NCAA opener - 0
- College Baseball: DWC stays alive in NCAAs - 0
- Penmen set sights on return to NCAA Div. II World Series - 0
READER COMMENTS: 0
- Fisher Cats stop New Britain in completion of suspended game - 0
- Red Sox rally in eighth inning to clip Cleveland - 0
- NH's Locke wins again for Pirates; now 5-1 on year - 0
- No one injured in Manchester police cruiser crash - 0
- Animal Rescue League names Volunteer of Year - 0
- NH Business People: State Motors receives top dealer honor - 0
- Exeter company launches refrigerated dog food line - 0
- Gorham mill's new CEO aims for niche market - 0
- John Cunningham: Limited liability corporations can be like marriages - incompatible - 0
Talk of UNH logo change brings out passions
Memorial Day services, events around NH