You’re wrapping up the day at your business. It’s late, but you’ve managed to catch up on the nagging paperwork that’s been calling your name for a week.
It’s hard not to be nervous being the office at this time in the evening. The true protesters don’t bother you. The rioters and looters on the other hand, are always a concern.
It’s time to go, but you decide you ought to head to the bathroom before departing, in case something holds you up on the way to the house. As is often the case, you’re alone in the office. In fact, nobody but you and the cleaning crew is around at all.
You take your restroom break, and pack up the things you want to lug home with you.
Looking out the window though, it appears some seedy looking, probably-malicious individuals are casing the place. What now?
Given the chance, you want to leave them alone, hope they’ll move on and leave your hard-built business be. The longer you sit there though, the less likely it appears things will go that way.
Worse yet, since they’re hanging out in a group near the main entrance, now you have to worry about being harassed or worse when you try to leave.
It’s also possible if you exit through that door, they’ll attempt to force their way into the facility to do their less-than-honorable business.
Since this sort of thing started, you decided it was in your best interest to practice your right to bear arms. That said, the last thing on your mind is taking the lives of one or more “protesters.” Given the opportunity, you’d rather never fire that thing concealed in the holster at your waist.
Calling the police doesn’t help. They say, “We’ll look into it.” and never show up.
Sooner or later, it’s likely you’ll be forced to make a choice, one that you don’t remotely relish. You see firearms in the crowd, and hear somebody trying to open the front door.
Then there’s a sound of breaking glass.
You make your way to the main entrance just in time to see someone trying to open the door from the inside. It won’t be long before they’ve gained access.
The sidearm leaves its home and you fire a single shot. A person falls to the ground outside and the crowd disperses.
You call the cops again, this time, reporting that you’ve discharged your weapon and you think an intruder has been hit.
Believe me when I tell you, nobody wants to experience what just happened.
Now let’s change our picture a little. Assume it was your home instead of your business. You have young children, and a spouse who you count it part of the deal to protect from evildoers. Further, you’ve heard the stories of houses being firebombed. What do you do?
If anything, the answer is harder, but you feel you’ve no choice when you see the rioters. Chances are, your family won’t be able to leave.
Okay, we’ll do something else. How about we have the police come to where the rioters are gathering with crowd dispersal tools (bean bags, rubber bullets, tear gas, water hoses) and tell the folks observed to be creating mayhem to leave or suffer the consequences?
Some wiseguy decides to test the waters and ends up catching a bean bag in the thigh. At that point, he limps for the hills.
Others begin to question whether or not sticking around is a worthwhile expenditure of time and effort. Seeing law enforcement is not budging, they decide it’s time to go elsewhere. Some of the police keep tabs on them and follow them to any other place they decide to find themselves that’s in the public eye.
What happened in the case of our business if this was the approach? A “protester” didn’t end up in the hospital, or worse yet, the morgue. The business owner didn’t have to risk his life or property or discharge his pistol. Damage to the building was minimal, if it occurred at all.
The same sort of thing could be said for the rioters in a residential neighborhood. Had things continued to escalate, you can be sure someone would’ve been at least injured, and possibly killed. And at a bare minimum, it’s possible damage would have occurred to residences
I’m not suggesting the boys in blue should come in guns blazing. Quite the opposite.
It’s my contention they can literally save lives, health and property by employing reasonable force.
Yes, it’s possible minor (and even on very rare occasion, more major) injuries might occur; there might even be deaths. By comparison to situations that happen when a homeowner or business proprietor feels obliged to use deadly force—or when rioters do so—the damage is typically minimal.
Considering how things’re going at this point, where we have businesses razed to the ground, a small amount of riot control would be far preferable. Inside the burned out skeletons, is periodically found the corpse of an unfortunate who happened to be in the building when it was set ablaze.
We have people calling on helpers other than the police to protect their property. In almost every case, they’ll be bringing lethal weapons when they do so.
You can argue that, as the person in charge of your city or a particular region of it, you have no desire to set the cops on supposed protesters. Question one though is, “Are people breaking into, looting and destroying business and houses protesters?”
Let me help you to understand, the simple answer is, “No.”
Now consider this; would you rather see the rioters and looters be hit with a beanbag and suffer relatively little lasting harm, or a shopkeeper, homeowner, or rioter die?
In your official capacity, you may think it unreasonable to deploy force against rioters and looters. If reasonable force is used though, you might very literally save lives. Nobody’s asking you to shoot rioters and looters on sight even though they’re in breach of law. People just want you to employ reasonable force. If it’s possible, that may be “none at all.” Considering it’s probably not feasible it would be, “The minimum amount necessary to dissuade those causing harm or death to people, and damaging property from their activity.” Call me crazy, but if it saves lives, this seems like the best course.
And by the way, real protesters may be a nuisance, but if all they’re doing is protesting (no violence or mayhem involved), keep in mind, I’m not even talking about them.
Thanks for reading, and may your time be good.