Day by Day

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Dangerous Victims

Kevin Baker has another fan, one who has linked to his Dangerous Victims essays. If you haven't read them yourself, perhaps now would be a good time to do so.

Essay One: It's most important that all potential victims be as dangerous as they can.

Essay Two: Violence and the Social Contract.

Essay Three: Governments, Criminals, and Dangerous Victims.

Read them? Back already? Right then, on to Kevin Baker's latest fan, Hecate. (Love the name!) In her post about why she linked to those three essays, she lays out a few plain truths that the anti-gun crowd would rather forget:

I recall a friend describing a brief time when he worked in a liquor store. It was the only one in the area that had never been robbed. The store owner had a policy that anyone working there had to have a gun and carry it openly.

One evening, a carful of young urban males drove past the store repeatedly. Then they stopped for a better look. What they saw was a store clerk wearing a Smith & Wesson .357 K-frame and looking them right in the eye.

They left and never came back.

What saved my friend, and his employer's profits, was that he was a dangerous victim, not a helpless one.

While that's a powerful statement, there's another truth that she writes just one paragraph above it:

The first essay applies most closely to the surface issue here. The way to keep convenience store clerks and customers safe is not to make them as helpless as possible. Robbers aren't afraid of the police. They almost never arrive in time to stop a crime in progress. Robbers aren't afraid of the courts. They have been through that system over and over, only to wind up back on the street to commit more crimes. The only thing robbers fear is somebody with the tools, skills, and will to stop them right now.
I recall reading someone, perhaps Francis Porretto, who described how the laws are a substitute for violence. We as a society follow the laws that are laid down because the alternative is violence. Let's take theft. Horse theft, in particular. You've all heard about how a horse thief ain't good fer nuthin' but hangin', right? Why do you think that was?

Because horses were required for life in many places in the West. Stealing a man's horse meant that you were stealing his way of making a living. And in the Old West, stealing a man's living meant quite literally that he might starve. Without a code of laws in place to punish those horse thieves, what recourse would a man have? If there was no way of repairing the damage that those thieves caused, then what could you do to stop the thieves before they started?

You killed them. Period. You wreaked great violence upon the criminals who would destroy you.

With a code of laws in place, you allowed justice under those laws to replace the violence that you once took into your own hands. When you agree to live under the law, you agree to let the law replace your own vengence. Instead of hanging a horse thief, you allowed the Sheriff or his deputy to arrest the horse thief and send him to jail.

So, got all this? I haven't mixed things up too badly have I? Still with me? Good

So what happens when the law, the law that we agree to live under, does NOT give us our reparation? If we agree that the law replaces our personal violence, but the law does not address the grievances we have against the criminals who have harmed us? And have no doubt, the law in this country has been getting weaker and weaker for decades. Hell, the whole reason the death penalty is still in existence is because life in prison doesn't really mean LIFE IN PRISON. It means maybe 25 years, then parole, and that's if you don't get out earlier for good behavior. Our grievances are NOT being addressed by the law. The criminals in many cities run rampant, knowing that even if they get caught they won't be punished for their crimes.

So the law which is supposed to punish the criminals is not doing what it's supposed to do. The alternative to violence isn't working. What's left? Well, it's the first solution that the law was supposed to supplant - violence.

I strongly urge my friends to be as violent as possible. Just remember the difference between violent and protective, versus violent and predatory. The former is commendable and should be encouraged. The latter will be hunted down and killed by the former.

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