Trayvon Martin's Death Won't Be In Vain
Florida, like a lot of other places that are rushing to hand out CCW permits needs to temper the enthusiasm of having more armed citizens on the streets with good judgment, something George Zimmerman lacked.
Robert VerBruggen has a thoughtful post up at NRO about this tragic case:
There is a difference between defending yourself and eagerly seeking a confrontation with another person for no reason. Zimmerman left his SUV and pursued this young man on foot even after the police dispatcher pointedly told him there was no reason for him to be doing that. Zimmerman's eagerness to provoke a confrontation resulted in an innocent young man losing his life.
As Maetenloch at the Ace of Spades blog so aptly put it:
Given Florida's 'Stand Your Ground' statute so far police haven't charged Zimmerman with any crime since he claims he was merely defending himself. But this to me this seems a perversion of the whole idea of CCW and self-defense. 'Stand Your Ground' shouldn't give you license to go around confronting people and then killing them when the confrontation doesn't go your way. That's a recipe for wild west vigilantism.It's not like Zimmerman found this kid trying to break into his house. He's apparently driving around looking for 'suspicious' people to confront. A CCW license and being part of a Neighborhood Watch doesn't give you the right to do that sort of thing.
This case should focus a lot of attention on what kind of judgement you have to have to carry concealed. There are indeed some people out there who think a concealed handgun permit automatically deputizes them or something. It doesn't.
I can only hope the widespread publicity this case has gotten will help prevent more George Zimmerman's in the future from jumping out of their cars to eagerly confront somebody like some self-appointed vigilante.