Mission statement:

Armed and Safe is a gun rights advocacy blog, with the mission of debunking the "logic" of the enemies of the Constitutionally guaranteed, fundamental human right of the individual to keep and bear arms.

I can be reached at 45superman@gmail.com.You can follow me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/45superman.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Victory for self-defense in Wisconsin

Back in February, I wrote about a Wisconsin man (Andres Vegas) who defended himself (twice) with a firearm. After his first occasion defending himself (from muggers) with a gun, he was not charged with any crime (although his gun was confiscated and never returned)--but he was told that if he were "caught" again carrying a gun in Wisconsin (one of two states in which defenselessness is mandated by state law), he would be charged. Then he was mugged again, and being unarmed this time (and thus at a distinct disadvantage, of course), he was lucky to survive (he was "merely" beaten, robbed, and sprayed with pepper spray). He bought another pistol, and carried it for self-defense, apparently deciding that survival was more important than compliance with a decree that he must remain defenseless.

This being the Milwaukee area, he encountered muggers yet again, and again wounded one of the criminals. Although the District Attorney acknowledged that this shooting, too, was self-defense, and thus the shooting itself was not something for which he could be prosecuted, this time he was charged . . . for carrying the gun. In my earlier post, I made no attempt to hide my contempt for a "justice" system that would claim to recognize the right to defend oneself, but would outlaw the most effective (by far) means of doing so.

Yesterday, we learned that the Wisconsin courts, in a stunning display of good sense, vindicated Vegas, and dismissed the charges against him as being unconstitutional.

"Defendant Vegas has demonstrated the requisite extraordinary circumstances that warrant his concealed weapon…Vegas legally purchased his firearm for the purpose of security and protection. There is a strong inference that Vegas’ concealed firearm has saved his life during these violent assaults…Vegas has a substantial interest in being secure and protecting himself by carrying a concealed weapon."
Obviously, the requirement to demonstrate "extraordinary circumstances" to have the right to defend oneself is obscene (after all--doesn't everyone "have a substantial interest in being secure and protecting" himself/herself?). Still, I have to count the court's recognition of the unconstitutionality of Wisconsin's law against carrying a concealed firearm for self-defense as progress.

Wisconsin's Governor James Doyle has twice vetoed concealed carry legislation--vetoes that have twice been upheld by the narrowest of margins. As an enemy of his constituents' ability to defend themselves, he cannot be happy about this court ruling, as it puts concealed carry on a vastly firmer footing.

Doyle's probable unhappiness is almost as satisfying as Vegas' exoneration (although I could hardly blame Vegas for seeing it a bit differently). Deal with it, Doyle.


Anonymous said...

what about not hiding your weapon just carry it on your side in Wisconsin so everyone can see. Would that be against the law? The law needs to change in this state!

Kurt '45superman' Hofmann said...

Technically, open carry is perfectly legal in Wisconsin.

The problem is that some WI cops don't seem to know that (or pretend not to know it).

Team Passion said...

We need to vote doyle out and replace him with a champion of pro self defense laws. It's really up to us the voters to fix this injustice.