Self-Defense laws in your state?

Discussion in 'General Self Defense' started by Pepsiman, May 5, 2017.

  1. Jenna

    Jenna Senior Master

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    The risk to your own life is also likewise apparent here. If I were your family I would not want you to take risks that might get you dead
     
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  2. Psilent Knight

    Psilent Knight Blue Belt

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    I understand exactly what you're saying Jenna. And you're right. I would not want to take unnecessary risks either. If I am engaging a threat (whether to defend myself or my family) it is only because engaging that threat is the only option that I have. So unfortunately I am taking a risk that I don't want to take but I have to take.

    This is why I said I want to become even more vigilant in taking precautionary measures. Awareness, avoidance, deescalation, escape, careful observation, etc. Things like that. Any and all safety practices that can possibly keep me and my family out of these situations.

    I think Jesse Murray did made two mistakes in his situation. I think the first and most critical mistake is being in a bar....specifically being in a bar with his lady friend.

    Stay away from those bars guys; they're known trouble magnets. :p

    Thanks for your thoughtful reply Jenna.
     
  3. Jenna

    Jenna Senior Master

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    What do you think to the idea we are in many ways conditioned to be a fearful - and therefore tending towards hypervigilance, easier manipulated to act in certain pre-ordaned ways, and perhaps less rational? Could it be true, example.. that of all the home intrusion offences most do not make it to any media because they are common-or-garden property crime, burglary and theft? And that the less common and but more dramatic home intrusions that involve actual bodily harm have more perceived value or interest to media consumers and are therefore given disproportionate airtime? Plainly these traumatic and frightening events do happen and but we are conditioned by media output into skewed perception of normality.. I am theorising, what do you think?

    What I mean is, as martial artists, we can find our selves in a martial mindset as I am sure you know, in many cases to the good.. example being assertive without being aggressive in work or other interpersonal relationships.. Though in some cases I wonder can having a continual martial mindset cause us to be in some way blinkered to life that completely precludes the whole notion of aggression to others? I am asking you a bigger question here and possibly another thread and but I will ask anyway because I have observed posts in this one.. So like it is possible to rule out aggression altogether or it isi always me and my wish vs them and theirs? what do you think.. hope this does not digress you away.. Thank you
     
  4. Psilent Knight

    Psilent Knight Blue Belt

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    I wouldn't doubt that. That's a very real possibility. And if I am personally fearful and hypervigilant I don't know if I am manipulated to be so, but I would be conditioned to be so. And not by the media but by personal experiences and observation of the experiences of others around me.

    I honestly don't know. What I do know is that burglary has now become a different crime to home invasion today. Today burglary is when people break into your home while you are away, many, many times in broad daylight. Home invasions, on the other hand, happen LATE AT NIGHT and in the WEE HOURS OF THE MORNING. They break into your home while you and your family are in the home. And they come in with guns and, most times, shoot first and ask questions later. This is not a theory or suspicion that I have. This is something that I know to be a fact.

    I honestly don't know the answer to that either. I almost never miss the local evening news and I have seen news reports of home invasions where no one was seriously injured or killed but it made the news anyway. I think one of the goals of the local news (when reporting) is to make their viewers aware of where and when some of these crimes take place so that they can practice extra precaution and observation so as not to be "on the news" next (and possibly with a grim outcome).

    I don't know if you're right or wrong about this. I can't speak for anyone else but I honestly feel that my views of society isn't shaped by media output but by my experiences, observations, awareness of the barbaric nature of human beings and interactions with the world. The news only lets me know what happened, where it happened and to whom, among other things.

    Assertive without being aggressive. That is a worthy goal and way of thinking.

    What I am about to say some people may disagree with or think to be impossible. But I personally do not have a continual martial mindset. But I do have a continual awareness and observation mindset which switches to a protect myself and my family mindset if, AND ONLY IF, I am forced to do so. I can take my family to the movies or the amusement park and have nothing but a have fun and enjoy life's precious moments mindset, but if a group of suspicious acting people start following me and my family to our car then I will switch to a different mindset starting with awareness and very careful observation. Depending on the actions of these people and what they do will determine what type of situation, if any at all, this will turn into.

    Before I answer this last question you asked let me first say that I never, ever, ever start confrontations with people. And if people start confrontations with me my first goal is to walk away from that possible confrontation without any violence or physical altercation whatsoever. This is where avoidance, deescalation and escape skills come in handy.

    Now, having said that, you should know that there are people in this world who only understand one language. There are people in this world who aren't content with simply robbing you of your money and letting you live; they have a crazed urge to kill you anyway. There are people in this world who are sociopaths that cannot be reasoned with and who lack remorse. You should know that the people of today are doing crazy, psychotic drugs that were not available in our generations growing up. They're doing all kinds of crazy stuff now. Bath salts, fentanyl, heroin, meth, CRYSTAL meth, acid, K-2, crack cocaine, love boat, ice, ecstasy/molly and who knows whatever the hell else these people are doing out there. These drugs make these people seriously deranged, seriously out of touch with reality and seriously dangerous.

    So, to answer your question; if I am FORCED into a self protection situation (whether I am protecting myself or my family or both) then my answer is YES, in such a situation it is ALWAYS me and my wish vs them and theirs. I think to have any other mindset in such a situation is essentially akin to suicide.

    My mindset goes beyond simple self defense but goes deep into the human being and the human conditions of our day.
     
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2017
  5. jobo

    jobo Grandmaster

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    its a good point and one that has occurred to me, the high level of concern and in a few cases borderline paranoid, about self protection seems far higher on here than in the population in general, so does doing MA make you overly worried about being attacked or does MA attract people who have security phobias?
     
  6. Psilent Knight

    Psilent Knight Blue Belt

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    I don't know if you're right or wrong for most people but for me, in all honesty, I would have my mindset with or without MA practice. And besides, I do not train MA for self defense anyway. I practice Kyokushin Karate for fun, fitness and recreation.

    But, going back to mindset, I'm pretty sure it's a personality thing. So you will find plenty of people in the world who do absolutely not training at all that are what may be seen as overly paranoid. And you'll find plenty of MA practitioners in the world who some may say are too lackadaisical and overly trusting.

    No one here can deny that we live in a violent and dangerous society. To be aware and vigilant is to be safe. That poor family in Connecticut fell short on their precautionary measures. The two scum who invaded their home (3:00 in the morning) did not break in. They made their way into the house through an unlocked door. That was a mistake as well as the husband/father sleeping on a couch on the porch.

    If it's a personality thing (which I think it is) then we should not forget that a person's personality is very, very often influenced and shaped by past experiences and even observations. So, I guess it boils down to how many people here have had past experiences like mine or close to them? How many people here have personally witnessed death as I have? Maybe...just maybe, this is what it boils down to? I don't know.
     
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2017
  7. Tez3

    Tez3 Sr. Grandmaster

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    I don't know how you define crimes in the US but here burglary has always been when someone breaks into your house and steals things. Aggravated burglary is when the burglars threaten or use violence on the householders. We don't use the description 'home invasion'.

    The fear of crime is encouraged by politicians, it's a good thing to use when campaigning ie the Tories here 'Tough on crime, tough on the causes of crime' etc and a relatively easy thing to deal with, far easier than the economy. The crime figures especially violent crime has been falling for years ( though we have a bit of a blip at the moment because the government has cut the police numbers so crime has risen somewhat) but with so many programmes on television about 'real crime', so much coverage of crimes around the world not even just home new people have become afraid, conditioned if you like to fear crime especially violent crime. However, at no time in the UK's history has violent crime and the threat of being hurt been so low, even the terrorist threat is far less than we've had it in past years.

    Have I personally witnessed violent death. Yes. Have I witnessed violence yes, of quite a few different sorts including riots. Am I paranoid and bitter? No.
     
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  8. hoshin1600

    hoshin1600 Senior Master

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    this is something i have thought a lot about and my answer is as follows,,, i will add that my opinion is something i have been been hesitant to openly discuss, but since you asked the question point blank....

    martial artists are generally not paranoid. Mark Macyoung has talked about the idea that most martial arts are not threat management but rather fear management. most martial art schools are inept at actually teaching you self defense but give you the emotional confidence that you could deal with violence, when in fact the martial art has not given you the skills do to so.
    as i look at the problem at an even deeper level i find that it is not fear. people who sign up for martial art classes are not truly fearful that they will fall prey to violence. what they do have is a greater than average amount of stress caused by the feeling of helplessness in their lives. it could be any one area of a persons life that they have no control over. it could be financial or perhaps autonomy within their work place. overall they are sensitive to the fact that they do not have control and are helpless to correct the situation. martial arts gives them one area in life that they can proactively address the stress caused by the possible threat of violence. it is not so much the skills that reduce the fear induced stress but rather the ability to be proactive in the process of countering the helplessness. the problem is that this is a self perpetuating issue, by that i mean as you gain some skill it will relieve a certain amount of stress, however the more skills you attain the more you realize how much you dont know and the awareness of your vulnerabilities increase. this is similar to gun ownership. the person has an experience of helplessness /fear induced stress so they purchase a firearm, only to realize that they need another for the bedroom, then another for downstairs and one for upstairs. there is an old adage , one gun is 0 and 2 guns is one. this shows the growing need for protection.
    this growing need is also a driving force behind the need of skill diversification. i am good with my hands but i need ground skills "in case something happens there".
    the driving force is not paranoia or an irrational fear, it is the stress induced by the feeling of helplessness.
     
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  9. PhotonGuy

    PhotonGuy Senior Master

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    On the contrary I think a well trained martial artist should be serene, knowing they can take care of themselves.
     
  10. Tgace

    Tgace Grandmaster

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    You are correct Tez. People here in the US confuse legal terms quite often. People will often say "I was robbed" when they discover their vehicle was broken into overnight...robbery is the unlawful taking of property by force or the threat of force...not simple larceny from a vehicle or even a burglary.

    A burglary in most US States is defined as when someone "enters or remains unlawfully with the intent to commit a crime therin". A "Home Invasion" is a burglary. If/When caught the offenders will have numerous additional weapons/assault/etc charges as well, but it's still a burglary. If your home is unoccupied it's a burglary, If you are sleeping and someone breaks in and leaves with you unaware it's a burglary. If they kick in your door while you are awake its a burglary.

    The circumstances make it a different "degree" of burglary and it may come with various other associated charges.
     
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2017
  11. jobo

    jobo Grandmaster

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    yes we are moulded by our experience, but there has to be a degree of risk assessment otherwise being cautious and sensible can spiral away to be come a a serious personality problem. There are any number of terrible things that could happen to me or my family, but I don't want to live in a world where I'm scared to go out as some mad man might attack me with a axe, or one where im scared to stay in in case some one breaks in,and knifes me whilst I sleep. These things are quite possible, are they likely, no not very,
     
  12. jobo

    jobo Grandmaster

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    I can agree with all of that, there is a certain amount of my MA/fitness training that is that its one of the few things in my life where I have complete control and can therefore be a,source of accomplishment when I achieve things.

    but there is still a point, where is passes from being a good thing to being a bad thing, if every time I achieve a fitness goal it makes me fell more inadequate or an ma goal and it makes me feel more vulrable, then it is indeed feeding paranoia and inadequacy and that is very very bad
     
  13. hoshin1600

    hoshin1600 Senior Master

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    paranoia is brought on by anxiety but by definition is at a point of delusion and irrationality. if you were lifting weights to look better, then you progressed to working individual muscles ..." man the medial head of my triceps needs work" is not really paranoia but its the anxiety that keeps you from feeling like you finally got it where you want it. bulimia/ body dysmorphic disorder on the other hand is delusional and unhealthy. its a thin line and easy to cross.
    going back to martial arts, i do not think we walk around thinking that shadow ninja's are going to attack us if we are not wearing our aluminum helmets, but when they do our training will protect us. the anxiety is far more subtle and something most are not aware of. once you start training you do feel "as photon guy said" serene. you feel that you can handle yourself. but then you get immune to that feeling and the boogie monster grows to someone bigger, stronger more trained then yourself or someone with a weapon. we are the only species that has a concept of the future and we have learned to barter with the future and be proactive to assure a better outcome. it is what makes us human. the anxiety is a natural motivator but in todays world we do not have the same threats as our ancestors. the need for self protection is deeply ingrained in us. for military and LEO they know what the threats are and prepare based on actual knowledge, the civilian on the other hand is preparing based on imagination and on a future that most likely will never come.
    in my first post on this topic i said i was hesitant to talk about this...why?
    well... we are either delusional or hypocritical.
     
  14. Steve

    Steve Mostly Harmless

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    Burgled is just not a word that is used in the USA much any more. "Robbed" has become a catchall phrase, even among folks who understand that it is a term of art.
     
  15. PhotonGuy

    PhotonGuy Senior Master

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    As jks9199 has pointed out, if you are in a situation where you have to defend yourself against a bad guy and you do successfully stop the bad guy using whatever level of force, you will then be charged with anything from assault to murder depending on what you do. It is then up to you to defend yourself in court and to use self defense as a defense against the charge(s) being pressed. As jks9199 has mentioned and I believe we are all well aware of this, assault and murder and everything in between is illegal. That's how it is in most circumstances however there are exceptions. There are certain situations in which something that would ordinarily be against the law is allowed. For instance it is illegal to run red lights. However, there are exceptions to that. An emergency vehicle driving to an emergency with its lights and sirens on is allowed to run red lights. The driver of the emergency vehicle is not going to be charged in court because the driver did nothing wrong. In that situation the driver is allowed to run red lights so he is not guilty of anything. Likewise lets say a man is out with his wife and he gets attacked by a bad guy who is intent on beating him up and raping his wife. The man fights back and beats up the bad guy. The man should not be charged because he did nothing wrong. He is not guilty. Had the man attacked an innocent person who wasn't doing anything to him or his wife than he would be guilty but we're talking about a case of the man and his wife being attacked by a bad guy when he and his wife are the innocent people so to stop the bad guy and to use force doing so, that shouldn't get the man in trouble and shouldn't make the man guilty any more than the driver of an emergency vehicle who runs red lights while driving to an emergency.
     
  16. jks9199

    jks9199 Administrator Staff Member

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    Wrong word here. MAY, not will be charged. Depending on the seriousness of the offense involved (was the guy who attacked you bruised, mangled, or killed), and the specific circumstances -- there is discretion for the responding officers or prosecutors to decide whether or not to charge you. If they do charge you, you can then claim justification.
    Again, not quite on track with self defense. Self defense is a claim of justification; it says you had a damn good reason for what you did, not that you were allowed to do it.
    Not the same as an affirmative defense. In Virginia, section 46.2-920 gives an emergency vehicle, with lights and sirens running and due regard for safety, the authority to disregard certain traffic laws and regulations. At that point -- they aren't breaking the law.
    So long as the driver of the emergency vehicle showed due regard for safety, they were not breaking the law.
    And here, once again we break down. Wrong -- he IS guilty. He HAS broken the law. He may have been justified in doing so, by being attacked and defending his wife, but he has still broken the law.
    No -- because the emergency vehicle operator has been affirmatively granted the authority to drive in that manner; he (or she) is not breaking the law. Some states HAVE indeed created an affirmative code of self defense. But, here, search the Code of Virginia... find it there.

    Let me try using a different (and classic) example of a defense of justification. A man is stuck in an isolated resort community in the off season, when everything is locked up and closed. He has no food, no shelter, and the weather is life threateningly severe. He breaks into a cabin, eats food that is there, and takes shelter from the storm. At this point, he has committed at least breaking and entering and larceny, no? He forced his way into a cabin that didn't belong to him, and he took food that didn't belong to him. In breaking in -- he sets off an alarm, and the police arrive once the storm lifts. They arrest him; his defense is that had he not committed those crimes, he would have died. He was justified in breaking the law by a higher principle, the protection of human life.123
     
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2017
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