Thursday, July 18, 2013

NRA's Chris Cox: "Stand Your Ground" Is A Human Right

The shooting death of Trayon Martin by George Zimmerman has led to calls to repeal "Stand Your Ground" laws, which enable people to shoot to kill when they feel themselves in danger and impose no duty to retreat or mitigate the situation if possible. "Stand Your Ground" has been pushed by the NRA and the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC).

"Stand Your Ground" has been criticized by, among others, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, veteran police chief John F. Timoney and Attorney General Eric Holder, who told an NAACP national conference on Tuesday, "There has always been a legal defense for using deadly force if – and the 'if' is important – no safe retreat is available. But we must examine laws that take this further by eliminating the common sense and age-old requirement that people who feel threatened have a duty to retreat, outside their home, if they can do so safely. By allowing and perhaps encouraging violent situations to escalate in public, such laws undermine public safety."

In response, Chris W. Cox (above), executive director of the NRA's Institute for Legislative Action, said that "Stand Your Ground" represents a "human right": "The attorney general fails to understand that self-defense is not a concept, it’s a fundamental human right. To send a message that legitimate self-defense is to blame is unconscionable, and demonstrates once again that this administration will exploit tragedies to push their political agenda."

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