I come from a “cop household.” Though my father had given up being a police officer by the time I was born, he never “un-learned” the lessons it taught him. These lessons, in turn, were passed-on and our household operated with a certain realistic world view with regards to people and the dangers of the world.
For the sheltered liberals who live in their bubbles of rainbows and hippy-dippy isolation, it’s paranoia. For us grown-ups who see that the world is a tough place, it’s reality.
I was probably eight or so when I first heard my father say it- a mantra favored by many police officers around the country: “I’d rather be judged by twelve than carried by six.”
Put another way: “I’d rather be judged by twelve [jurors] than carried by six [pallbearers].” Not a day goes by that I don’t think of the mantra. Each and every day that I put my pants on and slide my Glock into its holster, I remember the message of self-preservation without really meaning to.
No, I’m not a gunslinger. I’m not John Wayne or a Man With No Name. I don’t have showdowns on Main Street, I don’t square-off with any sass-talking drunkard in a saloon. I keep to myself and I pray sincerely that my guns will be passed-on to my children, never having been fired in self-defense.
I’m no shoot-‘em-up cowboy. I just don’t want to die and if given the choice, I’ll choose to kill rather than be killed. Anyone who carries a gun needs to be willing to make the same choice or otherwise forego the carry piece.
Not everybody sees it this way, however. Some assert that we have a duty to become victims in the name of supposed fairness.
According to a recent Huffington Post article, those who use their firearms in the commission of self-defense are, in fact, committing a crime. According to Justin Curmi, the Second Amendment does protect firearm ownership. Using them, however, he claims is illegal as shooting an attacker deprives him or her of a fair trial.
“The main problem with the notion of self-defense is it imposes on justice, for everyone has the right for a fair trial. Therefore, using a firearm to defend oneself is not legal because if the attacker is killed, he or she is devoid of his or her rights.”
By the very same logic if we wish to call it that- police should be likewise prohibited from using their weapon as shooting a gun-wielding suspect deprives the suspect of a fair trial.
This mindset should be surprising to me, but it’s really not. In this time of absolute moral relativism where each and every reality is up for debate, we’re seeing women pretending to be men, men pretending to be 6-year-old girls and as a nation, we’re pretending that the words “shall not be infringed” is unknowably ambiguous and in need of further clarification.
This is an absurd position that is in direct contrast with everything we know. The right to self-defense has been codified in every civilization’s laws since packs of humans began living as a society. Further, the right to self-preservation is not a socially-constructed right, but an instinct that is infused within us as animals. Even the cuddliest pet will fight back if cornered and left with no choice but fighting or death. Should we expect members of society to surrender their lives to criminals under the absurd premise that their right to receive a trial is more important than my right of self-preservation?
Like I said, I’d rather be judged by twelve than carried by six. That won’t change.