In the wake of the Zimmerman verdict, the use of lethal force and when it is appropriate is a subject of great controversy. With that in mind, when do you believe lethal force is justified?
For anyone who thinks my defense of George Zimmerman has anything to do with race, I care about skin color like I care about hair color and eye color. It’s a descriptor and nothing more. If you think it defines you or someone else to be a particular race, you are the one being racist in doing so.
If you think that I’m defending Zimmerman because he’s not black and Trayvon Martin is, chances are you’re probably more of a racist than I’ll ever be.
I love all human life that respects other human life, but I simply have no respect for people who think they have a right to physically assault someone who didn’t agree to mutual physical combat in advance (Such as two blokes getting into a bar fight).
Back in March, I blogged about my sincere passion on defending Jonathan Lowe, an ex-soldier who was physically assaulted and who happens to be black (Again, not that his race should matter, but I only mention it to show I am defending a black man as vehemently as I defend Zimmerman) who is charged with murder for stabbing one of his assailants to death, yet because his assailant was attempting to flee when Lowe stabbed him, he’s being charged with murder—disgracefully charged in my opinion.
This person (no idea if his attacker was black or white, but for the 3rd time, it shouldn’t matter) chose to attack someone who had a deadly weapon to defend themselves, and like Trayvon Martin, (by account of all the physical and testimonial evidence provided, and thus the impetus for his acquittal) his choice of aggression over cooperation was the reason for his death.
Maybe instead of prosecuting victims of violent attacks who react with deadly force and ruining their lives, we can talk to children about not being violent in the first place. Maybe if we want to stop racism, we should stop being racist, whether it be white on black racism, black on white racism, or anything in between.
Maybe we could talk about all the young innocent men (of all races) who are routinely killed by others because gang life is considered more glamorous then geek life by today’s youth, and because parents are too busy to put the glorification of thug life in perspective for their children.
I grew up seeing movies about cowboys an Indians, but my parents taught me that such stories were fictional, and that hatred of native Americans is not a good thing. Sure it’s a part of our history, just as slavery, but it’s a part we’ve come to realize we could have and should have handled better. Maybe more parents should teach their kids the same about gang life and white people. Sure we Caucasians have a history of being racist, but that’s largely unaccepted now, and most intelligent people these days know better.
If Zimmerman had acted the exact same way prior to the physical altercation between the two and Trayvon simply had said, “I’m walking to my father’s house, he lives right over there” versus escalating the verbal confrontation to a physical one, does anyone truly believe he wouldn’t be alive today? Honestly think about that statement for a minute and tell me I’m wrong. So if I’m right, and any one of you with the power of reason should be comfortable that I am, then you know Trayvon is sadly, and I do mean sadly, a victim of his own aggression.
I am not a racist. I’m one of the few people that scold those of my own race who exhibit hateful racism in front of me. Indifference is apathy are traits I do not respect.
I defend Zimmerman and Lowe because they were attacked and they reacted as I would have when I was twice attacked, if I had only had a gun then (once by four black men, once by a white guy, but for the fourth time now, the race shouldn’t matter). Instead of judging Zimmerman and Lowe, I empathize with them. If you’ve never been physically attacked and felt your life was in mortal danger, maybe you should stop judging and recognize that you don’t know how you’d react.
Here’s a link to my blog on the subject of self-defense where I mention Lowe’s situation, not the Zimmerman/Martin one, and it has a link to the story about Jonathan Lowe. All of you who so vehemently want to defend Trayvon Martin should equally and vehemently stand up to defend Jonathan Lowe. If you do, I will stand with you. He’s a black man who truly was an innocent victim, but unlike Trayvon Martin by all accounts, he attacked AFTER he was attacked first, not before.
I wish to lay out some hypothetical arguments to consider before identifying my point in making them—please don’t jump ahead.
- Let’s imagine that Walmart, K-Mart, Kohl’s, et al. decided they weren’t making enough profit. The companies met and agreed to hike their prices by 10% across the board to address the issue. If they unite together, they can all raise their prices equally, make more money, and the consumer is left no choice but to pay the increased costs. It’s a genius idea for the stores of course, but there is one problem. There’s a name for such shenanigans—it’s called collusion. It is highly illegal because it violates the competitive principle of free-market capitalism.
- In the world of contract law, in order for a contract to be valid, it must have a quid pro quo. Meaning that if I write a contract that simply said I’d give you a million dollars with nothing in the contract I get in return, that contract is unenforceable—a contract must be beneficial to both parties. Why? Because there’s no logical reason for a person to sign a contract where only the other party benefits. It either implies something illegal that is unwritten, or someone who is mentally disadvantaged in such a way that they cannot fully understand what they are agreeing to.
In the 1800’s, as Standard Oil rose to be arguably the most powerful company the world has ever seen, they kept buying up all the smaller oil companies who dared compete with them, making it so no one could get oil unless they got it from Standard. As a result, Standard could charge whatever they wanted, they could treat employees like dirt, and they didn’t have to concern themselves with the quality of their product. Why? Because there was no competition for consumers or employees to force Standard to be better. This is called a monopoly, and is also highly illegal—now. Mostly because of Standard Oil.
- If I owned an automotive chassis manufacturing business but needed to find an engine builder to help me produce a car I want to bring to market, I would meet with several and begin to work on deciding who best suits my needs. After picking a few who show promise, I’d choose the one I liked best from the group and enter into contract negotiations with them. If none of them were to my liking, no contract would be agreed upon. I’d be back to square one and they’d be out of a job, but at least neither of us entered into an agreement we didn’t want—that’s how contract negotiations work. But more importantly, the option for both parties to walk away is the one and only thing that ensures contract negotiations are fair and mutually beneficial.
In an illegal tactic known as a protection racket, if I were to say, “You pay me to protect your business or else…” you would either do it, or you risk me destroying your business’ property or physically attacking you. It’s a tactic made famous by organized crime. Such a contract would be a contract signed under duress, also highly illegal and unenforceable. It is similar to the quid pro quo issue, but the people doing the threatening present the act of not harming you as the thing they are giving you in return.
So now that we’ve covered these tactics, why do I mention all of them? Because labor unions violate each one.
How is this possible?
Government officials over time, courting the unions and the powers they possess to help them get elected, have carved out laws to allow these otherwise illegal practices to be employed by unions. In doing so, it gives the impression they are helping the populace, even though the large majority of Americans are actually non-union.
There was a quid pro quo here, but it wasn’t between the unions and the employers who have a contract with each other, it was between the unions and the politicians. The people and the employers merely got the shaft.
So how do they violate these rules?
Collusion, protection racket, and contracts signed under duress: Union employees unite together to force employers to pay them more instead of competing with each other in a free employment market. They don’t ask for a raise on their individual merits, they demand them as a collective “or else.”
No quid pro quo: They force companies to sign contracts that are beneficial to the union at the detriment of the employer. They insinuate that their quid pro quo is that they provide a good work force to the employer, but if you asked any employer if they wanted a union versus a non-union workforce off the record, I defy you to find employers who would prefer union-workers. Let there be no doubt that if any unionized business was given the option to get out of a union contract and peacefully hire a new non-union workforce, they’d do it without hesitation. The idea that unions provide a service to the employer is a myth perpetuated by unions to overcome the fact that there is not a proper quid pro quo in their contracts. There is no logical argument one can make whereby a contract between an employer and a labor union is mutually beneficial.
Monopoly: No business or employee gets to choose between which union it deals with, nor are there multiple unions competing with each other in an industry. The applicable union a business is compelled to do business with merely dictate they are the ones to be dealt with whether you like it or not. In non-right to work states, they don’t even have a choice as to whether or not to participate as a condition of employment.
Contracts signed under duress: A business owner has no option to just walk away. This is called union-busting, and there are actually laws to prevent it, which effectively strong-arm business into making a deal by legislative force, also a form of duress. Union workers don’t just threaten to quit and find employment elsewhere if their demands aren’t met, they stand outside your business and prevent, deter, and/or interfere with customers and other workers from going in and doing business there. It’s not a Let’s-Do-Business-Together contract, it’s a Do-Business-With-Us-Or-Else contact.
The list of companies that were made healthier and more profitable by the addition of a unionized work force is so minimal as to be non-existent. Much like socialism, it’s sold as a system designed to serve the greater good, but also much like socialism, I have yet to see an effective example where the greater good has truly been served. Until labor unions are forced to operate under the same rules as everyone else, they continue to be illegal enterprises only made legal by selective legislation—our economy will suffer until American’s elect honorable politicians who care more about the moral high ground than election results and put an end to this.