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Debate: Protect judges by arming them?

Following two shootings (a judge in an Atlanta courthouse and a Chicago federal judge's family), Michael Cernovich says he has a solution for protecting the bench.

Don't chain criminal defendants, and harm the presumption of innocence, Cernovich writes. Instead, he suggests American judges be equipped to exercise their Second Amendment rights:

"What should we do?  My proposal is simple -- Arm judges....

"Given that we already trust judges with matters of life and death, why not trust with firearms?

"Implementation would be simple and relatively inexpensive.  Every judge would be issued a sidearm suitable to his or her size and disposition.  Special instructors would provide judges with mandatory firearms training, similar to CLE.  We have ample state and federal police officers willing and able to provide this training.  Given that even the highest-quality firearms and inexpensive, and that we already have firearms instructors on the government payroll, it's obvious that the costs of protecting our judges - and thus our courtrooms - are small.

"Some will argue that judges are among the most vocal opponents of gun rights.  Thus, they would resist this proposal.  Fair enough.  Judges should not be required to possess a firearm.  But we should not deny other judges the right to self-protection. The most effective - and most cost-effective - proposal to keep judges safe is to empower judges to protect themselves."

Cernovich has elicited two comments thus far--one supporter, one detractor.

Sure, writes Mark Draughn, adding, "I'm not convinced that judges are really in all that much danger. Oh, sure, the last few weeks have seen some tragic events, but they are also rare events."

"I just think that's silly," responds Mahan Atma. "Most judges I know (federal) are simply ill-equipped to defend themselves in this manner. A lot of them are old and frail, and their reflexes aren't what they used to be. Regardless of age, they are fairly gentle, physically unaggressive people who wouldn't feel very comfortable carrying a firearm, much less discharging one at another person."

What do you think? Cernovich is open to comments here.

Posted by Product Team on March 14, 2005 at 02:19 PM | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

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