Thursday, March 22, 2012

Alan Gottlieb Takes On Chris Matthews Over Florida's Stand Your Ground Law

I don't think MSNBC's Chris Matthews felt any tingles up his leg in his exchanges with Alan Gottlieb of the Second Amendment Foundation today. Gottlieb and anti-gun Florida State Sen. Chris Smith (D-Broward/Palm Beach County) were guests today on MSNBC's Hardball with Chris Matthews. The topic of discussion as one might expect was the State of Florida's Stand Your Ground law.

Gottlieb made a very good point early on when he said "indict the person, not the law". He went to say that it didn't appear to him that the law applied here as, in his opinion, Zimmerman didn't stand his ground. Rather he pursued Trayvon Martin. This is the same point that Sebastian and others have made repeatedly.


  1. I have to take exception with Gottlieb when he says that we don't have "Stand Your Ground" in Chicago. We have no duty to retreat anywhere we are legally allowed to be, we just can't carry guns with which to defend ourselves. I've been trying to figure out when duty to retreat was removed from our statutes. I suspect it has been many years.

  2. @ David: Sebastian at Shall Not Be Questioned has written a lot about it in the last few days. Many states - and I don't know where Illinois falls here - have a common law basis for no retreat or stand your ground in the face of a deadly attack. Acc. to Sebastian, Illinois is one of them. See the link.

  3. Ah, that might explain why I can't find out when it was removed. We might never have had a duty to retreat.

  4. We might never have had a duty to retreat.

    You'd only have one if your legislature codified English common law (where it came from) or if case law, perhaps following English common law, had created it. As I've noted on Shall Not Be Questioned the Massachusetts judiciary has persistently created as much of a duty to retreat from your home as they could, and in my home state of Missouri the clear language of our Castle Doctrine has been judicially nullified.