What Should We Do When Government Bureaucrats Kill?

Detroit justified homicides spike in 2014
As Detroit's justified homicide rate spikes 35 percent, overall homicide totals declined 6 percent in 2014.

U.S.A.-(AmmoLand.com)- We saw armed police officers raid the wrong house and kill innocent people in their beds. That happened most recently in a home in Louisville, Kentucky. There, three undercover cops shot 26-year-old Breonna Taylor to death during a midnight raid as she lay asleep. In this case, the police were at the wrong address and were seeking a criminal who’d been arrested earlier that day. The police then lied about their actions when they claimed they announced themselves as law enforcement officers before they broke down Taylor’s door. Law enforcement officers are routinely held legally harmless for their actions unless the law explicitly prohibits their mistakes. In response to this well-publicized incident, we’ve seen a call to eliminate “no-knock” raids, and further calls to eliminate or modify qualified immunity for police officers. That may be a good start, but it doesn’t go far enough.

Breonna Taylor

There are several similar cases where innocent civilians were killed by police. They routinely kill or injure honest citizens after government officials abuse their authority. It is time we held government employees accountable for what they do, and for what they fail to do.

We’re in this situation because we passed too many bad laws. It seemed like a good idea at the time to allow honest police officers to make a small mistake during the pursuit of justice. That went too far until we hold cops harmless when they casually kill innocent people. What we fail to see is that many bureaucrats kill too. It never makes it into the news.

We passed laws so that honest citizens need permission to arm themselves. That may not seem like a problem to you, but it does to women who are stalked and abused. Sure, these women take out restraining orders, but the police will not be there in time to stop an attack. These vulnerable victims need a defensive tool to protect themselves from a larger and more powerful attacker until police arrive. These victims need that tool right now and they need it everywhere they go. It is a matter of life and death.

The tragic fact is that victims of domestic abuse have been murdered while they waited for a bureaucrat to allow them to buy a gun. I wrote about one victim, Carol Bowne, here. These victims are not alone.

Carol Bowne
Stalking victim Carol Bowne

Bureaucrats will get back to you next year if you ask permission to buy a gun and keep it in your home in New York City. It may be years before bureaucrats tell you that your application to carry a firearm in public was denied. To the bureaucrat, the simple fact that you are still alive indicates that you didn’t really have a need for a firearm as a defensive tool in the first place. The bureaucrats ignore the people who hid in fear or were killed while they waited for the state to recognize their human right of self-defense. That is inhuman and unconscionable.

Today, many of us have sympathy for those victims because we found ourselves in a similar situation. During the Covid “epidemic”, we were told that bureaucrats couldn’t be bothered to process our government required permission slip to touch a gun in a gun store. Bureaucrats were too busy to process our permits to purchase a firearm and to bring the gun home with us. Some states stopped processing applications to carry a legal firearm in public. In the name of public safety, politicians closed shooting ranges and stopped gun-safety instruction for new gun owners.

I’m not buying it. We shouldn’t have to live unarmed, unprepared, and in fear due to a bureaucrat’s delay. It is true that a gun can’t stop you from being selected as a victim of crime: it can radically change the outcome of an attack.

That is why we should remove qualified immunity from the judges, law enforcement officials, and government bureaucrats who keep honest citizens disarmed. We routinely give bureaucrats a time-limit to process applications, and bureaucrats routinely ignore that limit. These government employee should be held liable when they disarm innocent people who are then defenseless when victimized. It is unconscionable to leave innocent people defenseless due to political delays and bureaucratic incompetence. We can fix this.

Removing qualified immunity would not make the victims whole again, but it might reduce their numbers by allowing more good people to protect themselves.


About Rob MorseSlow Facts

The original article with references is here. Rob Morse writes about gun rights at Ammoland, at Clash Daily, and on his SlowFacts blog. He hosts the Self Defense Gun Stories Podcast and co-hosts the Polite Society Podcast. Rob was an NRA pistol instructor and combat handgun competitor.

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sh68137
sh68137
4 months ago

For more and more Americans, law has been supplanted by “regulation”–a governing set of rules not legislated by representatives accountable to the people, but invented by an activist bureaucracy, much of which is well to the left of either political party. Bureaucrats weren’t terribly bothered about whether Congress would pass a mega-bill into law because, if faint-hearted progressives lose their nerve, the ATF will just “raise” “standards” all by itself. Then Bump-stocks and now Stabilizing braces. “Where do you go to vote out the ATF?”  It’s hard to imagine a more stupid or more dangerous way of making decisions than… Read more »

gregs
gregs
4 months ago

exactly, no qualified immunity for any governmental official. they have to be held responsible just like we the people are when law is broken, for whatever the reason. also, public employees should not be allowed to unionize. they are paid by public funds, that means we are the employers and we they tax payers should be the ones that decide, not other government officials. there should be civilian oversight of the police departments, especially where complaints are concerned, the police should not investigate the police in cases of misconduct. finally, any sworn government official that swears an oath to uphold… Read more »

Pa John
Pa John
4 months ago

Lawyers love terms like “reasonable” when they are naively used in laws and contracts, because they can be twisted and deformed and made to mean pretty much anything they want in a court of law.

https://www.thefreedictionary.com/naively

American Patriot
American Patriot
4 months ago

….And yet they still back Red-Flag laws, I guess because is just sounds so communist “””RED FLAG””””

Deconflictor
Deconflictor
4 months ago

I’m afraid the author, like so many politicians, journalists, and pundits, does not understand “qualified immunity” for the police. Qualified immunity applies only when the officer’s actions are “plainly reasonable” under the law and a jury would not find the officer violated the subject’s rights. This evaluation is taken from the plaintiff’s facts, not the officer’s. So qualified immunity protects the taxpayers from paying expensive legal costs for frivolous lawsuits. When there is a mismatch between the officer’s version and the plaintiff’s (regardless of how ridiculous the plaintiff’s story might be), the case goes to litigation as qualified immunity is… Read more »

a.x. perez
a.x. perez
4 months ago

As I have said elsewhere: If the Covid-19 Pandemic teaches us anything, let it be this, it is incredibly stupid to create a system where you need the government’s permission to buy a gun in an emergency and all the government’s offices are closed for the emergency.


Tionico
Tionico
4 months ago

It seemed like a good idea at the time to allow honest police officers to make a small mistake during the pursuit of justice Life is full of actions and the consequences of those actions. We ALL make choices daily. If I am driving along the freeway and following far too closely to be safe, and the guy in front of me has a blowout and begins swerving all over the place, I dont have space to avoid hitting him. Both cars are now trashed, someone ,likely me included, are getting a VERY exensive ride in the meat hack, off… Read more »

zed
zed
4 months ago

For the cops, they should be held accountable just as any other person should/would be held accountable. In fact, the standard should be much higher if you are police, or government employee. As for the bureaucrats, they should be charged with “Betrayal of Public Trust”, which should be a felony punishable with very long prison time all the way up to the death penalty it it results in the death or serious injury of any person and or loss of property over $20,000.00. I promise that if those elected or appointed are held to task, none of this social unrest… Read more »

MICHAEL J
MICHAEL J
4 months ago

Bureaucrats are the henchmen of politicians. Easily appointed, even harder to remove and they have no transparency. Politicians clearly know that they must distance themselves from unpopular issues even though it may be their idea in the first place. California is notorious for creating bureaucracies in all areas of government. Take for example the CADOJ approved handgun roster: a systematic plan to rid all new future handgun sales by imposing technology requirements that don’t exist. Who decided that? A bureaucrat. Air and water resources board, created by politicians and given unlimited and unchecked control even the politicians can’t touch. In… Read more »

Chuck
Chuck
4 months ago

Yep, gotta get rid of the immunity card … been sayin’ that for years. No skin in the game, who cares what gets done when they are immune from personal responsibility? Well good guys do care but there aren’t many of them in politics. Remove immunity, add back personal responsibility, then watch the game change as, for example, if a certain NJ politician (who hid in the basement and turned on the sprinklers) (or those many who failed to meet the thirty day requirements and have never been held accountable) and other such individuals suddenly were likely to be charged… Read more »

Mudhunter
Mudhunter
4 months ago

They should be tried for civil rights violations. Since inherent rights are the supreme law of the land, they have sworn to enforce those rights, not destroy them.

If there is a pattern of deliberately violating civil rights, might look into possible treasonous issues, such as being a member of a Marxists organization, etc.

Stag
Stag
4 months ago

Kill em back!

TexDad
TexDad
4 months ago

Why do we continue to allow the use of no-knock raids? No government office, badge, or piece of paper gives you the right to invade a private home, especially when any error (and in fact even when everyone involved is doing it right) means people, including officers, get shot and killed.

Renov8
Renov8
4 months ago

When there are no consequences for your actions or in some cases inactions, people will govern with no regard for those who they don’t represent. Qualified immunity should not exist or be applied for anyone in the position of power. It will continue to corrupt those who think they are above the law, which essentially what qualified immunity grants them…untouchable.

Time to not only make politicians and bureaucrats touchable, but also responsible for their actions or lack thereof.

Green Mtn. Boy
Green Mtn. Boy
4 months ago

If they swore a oath, there is a prescribed penalty on the books, carry it out.

GUNFUN
GUNFUN
4 months ago

So, what should we do?

Darkman
Darkman
4 months ago
Reply to  GUNFUN

According to the Daleks…Exterminate Exterminate Exterminate.

Random71
Random71
4 months ago
Reply to  GUNFUN

My thoughts are simple: Full constitutional review of ALL current laws at all three levels, and prior actions by anyone in government or public service, and hold them responsible for the crimes they have committed, then fire them and ban them from ever working for the state or terminate with extreme prejudice, on a case by case basis

Cruiser
Cruiser
4 months ago
Reply to  Random71

Who judges the Judges?

Tionico
Tionico
4 months ago
Reply to  Cruiser

other judges. Who else? “Good ol’ Boy Clubs abound in the “judicial branch”