Fight or Flight? Could a person be morally responsible for a criminals next victim if they had the chance to stop a criminal but choose to be safe and hide or allow the criminals to get away?

I don’t think that the legal system “likes to be” anything. The legal system IS what “we” have caused or allowed it to be. In the case of financial ruin brought on by a successful defense, that IS a predictable hazard associated with self/stuff defense. The legal system will be perfectly satisfied to “like” something else if and when “we” change the players and the rules. Acting otherwise seems folly to me.

I understand your philosophical desire for things to be other than they are, I just don’t think drawing lines in the sand as you propose will move the ball a meaningful amount in a positive direction. Sorry about the acronyms — I need to conserve my mental energy for all this heavy typing. :wink:

I forgave you almost immediately!:rofl: Of course I disagree with you. I do think if we start training people to not be afraid to flex their rights the system as a whole will naturally begin to change their expectations of people. From the judicial system to the criminals. I think we can agree to disagree and that’s ok. I think I’ve made some great points that are hard to argue because the truth is like a lion, you don’t have to really defend it you just need to let it free and it will defend itself. Again, always remember that fear has at least two meanings:
Forget Everything And Run or
Face Everything And Rise


The “Stand your Ground” (SYG) law is a tenet that removes Duty to Retreat before defending reasonable and justified. Prior to that, one was required to flee even one’s own home before legally be “allowed” to defend oneself. SYG does not state one is not allowed to flee, it only makes a reasonable defense justified.

Duty to Retreat did provide for when one was not able to flee. Unfortunately, it put the burden of proof on the victim that one was not able to flee. Hence the reason the law was changed in states that have SYG so that you were no longer required to prove that you were not able to retreat. As you noted, each scenario is different and should/does require different actions. SYG provides for those options that Duty to Retreat did not.

If I understand correctly, you believe that if we shift from stating that you should not have been there, to the criminal should not have been there, or the criminal should not have committed his illegal act, then the narrative will change to where we believe defending oneself is morally just, not an act that should be prosecuted, with the victim monetarily punished and threatened with prison time merely for justified self-defense.

1 Like

Ah, yes. And I have perfectly laid out the factual bases supporting my position. :rofl:
Guess it’s up to demoi now.

I don’t see where they would have a say in my inalienable RKBA, nor in a justified self-defense. A jury might, though, depending on the prosecutor - one that seeks to punish moral behavior.

Well, sure — RKBA is a thing, assuming we can keep it. But “they” will decide whether “your” use of force was in fact justified self-defense — not you.

Demoi is where the jury will come from. And the attorneys. And the judges. And the legislators who produce the laws all the players are to apply to “your” situation. And from whom all those players receive their delegations of authority and oversight. Demos is a supposed to be a pretty big deal in a democracy.

This is one interesting discussion.If an invader is in your house how the hell is anyone going to know if you told said invader to leave?Im not too worried about legal ramifications it’s my house.Leos around here seem to be on the same page.

1 Like

It might be worth noting that the police officers are, ultimately, probably not the ones who will decide whether or not you are charged with a crime/what crime you are charged with. Even if they shake your hand and say good job, don’t be surprised if you get a call later to, you know, clear up a few things, etc…


That’s not how I interpret it.

What I’m getting from this is not at all that we are framing as “you should not have been there”…we are framing it as "you did not need to put your life and limb and future at risk over ego/property/taking it to the criminals for the betterment of society [vigilante?].

It’s upstream of defending oneself, it’s avoiding the need to defend yourself in the first place

But there may be more than one subcurrent within this thread by now. For example, the proverbial intruder breaking into your occupied home in the middle of the night sounds like one thing being commented on, and arriving home to your house only occupied by intruders was also given as an example…two rather different things

1 Like

I’m not disagreeing with you. On the street or in public I totally agree.Ill try to avoid confrontation.However If your an intruder that’s going to invade my house I have advise…pick another one.

Meaning you should not have been there.

Not the intent, and certainly not what I stated. Further, posted the legal definition of vigilante, and your quote does not meet that definition.

True, believe through the discussion, the true intent of the OP’s comment came out, which I believe I got the essence of in my last post.

As you and Tech have pointed out, the problem is that victims of assault get prosecuted for defending themselves, which is where my post comes in. If society addresses crime problem as the criminal should not have been there or committed that crime, then the victim would not be punished monetarily and threatened with imprisonment.


I don’t think that means the same thing, but I can see how it reads that way.

For the last part we’d have to look at it on a case by case basis since the totality of the circumstances is never the same between incidents. I will say “two wrongs doesn’t make a right” to point out that it is entirely possible, and in fact not uncommon, for ALL involved to be wrong.

It’s also possible to be “right” and be dead.

1 Like

Yes, I do believe the essence of my intent has been absorbed. If it’s prudent, avoid a crappy situation with observation and alertness. Miss nothing. Sometimes situations present themselves to you. By no means do I think unqualified individuals should seek out crime to stop it. If someone tries to take your car or rob you or enter your house uninvited, I don’t think it should be assumed that defending yourself will result in any legal repercussions and I don’t think we should be trained to make this assumption or to comply to stay safe. Always remember that fear has at least two meanings.
Forget Everything And Run or
Face Everything And Rise