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Letter to the Editor

BY DI READERS | MARCH 26, 2012 6:30 AM

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Letter to the Editor

Self-defense is important. As a woman, I have always known certain things that I can do to escape if the situation occurs in which I feel seriously threatened.

But Stand Your Ground laws are among the most preposterous legislation I have ever imagined.

The Stand Your Ground statutes, which are law in more than 20 states and have been proposed in Iowa, are laws that render our Constitutional justice system useless. What good is it to have a police force if you can just shoot and kill the man who has been hassling you?

Florida was the first state to pass such a law. Between 2000 and 2005, there were 13 such killings by private citizens each year, on average. However, after the law was passed, from 2006 to 2010, there were reports of 36 killings per year. Maybe it's right to not trust the police force to render swift justice, but in these cases, justice wasn't met at all.

When I took a self-defense course as a third-grader in Girl Scouts, I was taught to bite, scream, and kick them in the shins so that they don't fall on top of me so that I can run away. That is what you do — you run away and hope that no one ends up dead, because murder, even in self-defense, is still murder, and it is not something you can ever escape.

There is a reason we have trials, juries, evidence, lawyers, and judges. I am repulsed by these laws, repulsed by the faux justice they promote, and repulsed by the apparent blood lust in our society that wants to encourage victims to stand up to attackers, even when the attacker is just a kid, eating Skittles.

Katie Kuntz
UI student


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