Women (and Men): Who Is Responsible For Your Defense?

10/15/2014
Dan Griffin

An Oregon woman held a home invader at gunpoint for nearly half an hour before police arrived after her 911 call. A man broke through two doors at 9:00 AM to get inside of Lisa Atkin’s home. Had she not been armed, who knows what would have happened?

Paul Slater broke into a Georgia woman’s home while her husband was at work and chased her and her two children into a crawl space leading to their attic. When he opened the access door and attempted to enter the attic after them, she was able to save her life and her children by emptying her .38 revolver in his direction, hitting her attacker five times in the face and torso.

In these cases, who was responsible for providing for the defense of these women, the police or the women themselves?

As the courts have repeatedly ruled, the police have no duty to protect you or me. That is, we cannot hold them financially, criminally, or civilly responsible for failing to protect us. Oh sure, it is their job to answer 911 calls and act as they deem appropriate, but all too often by the time they get there—if they get there at all (Warren v. District of Columbia)—it is too late. All that is left to do is write a report, and maybe, depending on the crime, turn the case over to the detectives. But there is no doubt the court’s position on this.

“There is no constitutional right to be protected by the state against being murdered.” Bowers v. DeVito

The state is not responsible for failing to protect you (DeShaney v. Winnebago County), even if there is a known, specific danger or threat against you (Hartzler v. City of San Jose). Nor are the police responsible for failing to enforce a restraining order (Castle Rock v. Gonzales).

The woman in the first story above, Lisa Atkin, said her advice to women everywhere is, “We have our Constitution and Second Amendment rights for a reason…and every woman should care about exercising [her] Second Amendment rights.”

Lisa concluded by saying, “Be a survivor, not a victim.” Good advice for women (and men).

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