by Rob Morse
An Austin Texas TV station, KXAN, reported on a home invasion-robbery. Unfortunately, the original article was more propaganda than news report. The original article, since revised, asked why citizens should be allowed to own guns and defend themselves from violent intruders forcibly entering their home. They asked why landlords can’t require tenants to be disarmed. The original article asked if the use of force was warranted since we don’t know the motives of the robbers. The article lamented that the defenders may go unprosecuted.
I think the reporters are in over their heads and we can help the news staff come up to speed.
Everyone has the right of self-defense. The legal presumption is that people who kick down your door are there to do you harm, particularly when there are multiple attackers at night. That presumption is necessary since you as a defender may have neither the time nor the ability to discern intent in the dark. Good people knock and introduce themselves. We’ve been doing that for a long time, but that obvious fact doesn’t sell advertising.
Granted the right of self-defense, your response still needs to be proportional to the threat you face, so mere intrusion doesn’t justify the use of lethal force. For example, don’t be an idiot and shoot your neighbors’ toddler who walks through your unlocked door. Even at night, you have to identify the threat.
As to the motive for the attack, people-in-need knock on their neighbors’ door and ask for help. We’ve been doing that for years and it works very well. We borrow a cup of sugar or a pair of jumper-cables without a thought to ask or a thought to give. That isn’t what happened here.
Most violent multi-attacker robberies are over drugs and drug money. That is true in Austin and in most US cities. If the news article wanted to provide thoughtful analysis, then they could look at our drug laws.
The right of self-defense is inalienable. Your life and the safety of your family is yours to protect. You have that right, and it isn’t up to the state to grant it to you. You have that right in public and at home.
A third of our violent criminal assaults occur in or near our home. Many of these attacks happen at night when the occupants are assumed to be asleep. Honest citizens justifiably defend themselves with their legally owned firearms thousands of times a day. You should blame the biased and bigoted media if that comes as news to you. Those facts put the news into perspective. They are easy for us to find on the web and equally easy for a journalist to report.
Some anti-rights billionaires pay journalists to slant the news against gun owners. Whether the news station wanted to look at our drug laws or examine our laws of self-defense, both deserve serious thought and less innuendo. KXAN-San Antonio needs to do better reporting. Look for more reliable news sources until they do.