Armed and Safe is quite correct to point out that my Governor is a gun banning turd, but I did want to highlight something else he mentioned:
Alright, I have a big problem with this, even before we get to the “fight for three ‘gun-control’ laws” part. Whenever I see calls for “tougher penalties for shooting at a police officers [sic],” I get the impression that we are expected to believe that the lives of police officers are implicitly more valuable than the lives of us “Average Joes.” That’s a concept I utterly reject.
As long as proper protections are in place for self-defense, and the law requires knowledge that the person the actor reasonably knew, or should have known, the person he was shooting at was a police officer, acting in his official capacity, I have no problem with a law like this. But it’s not because I believe police should be considered by law to be a special class of “super citizen”.
The legal theory behind why shooting at, or murdering a police officer is a more serious offense is because it’s more than just an attack against another person, but an attack against civilized order. Riotous behavior is really, in theory, no more than a property crime in most cases. These days you really never see the authorities using deadly force on rioters, but in most states, it’s perfectly lawful to use deadly force on people engaged in riotous behavior. Under Pennsylvania Law:
The use of deadly force is not in any event justifiable under this subsection unless the actor believes that the use of such [deadly] force is necessary to suppress a riot or mutiny after the rioters or mutineers have been ordered to disperse and warned, in any particular manner that the law may require, that such [deadly] force will be used if they do not obey.
The reason for this is similar to the reason for making the penalty stiffer for shooting at a police officer.Â Although rioting is typically a property crime, it is more properly a crime against order.Â Civilization is but a thin veneer, and it doesn’t take much scratching to reveal the ugliness underneath, and our laws have tended to reflect that.Â It is for that reason that we ought to treat assault against a law enforcement officer more seriously than we do other types of assault, not because they are a protected or privileged class of citizen.