WSJ Criticizes Obama for 'Stand Your Ground' Reversal

Image: WSJ Criticizes Obama for 'Stand Your Ground' Reversal

Tuesday, 23 Jul 2013 02:36 PM

By Dan Weil

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President Barack Obama has had yet another flip-flop by reversing his stance on stand-your-ground self-defense laws, according to a Wall Street Journal editorial.

"Same-sex marriage isn't the only subject on which President Obama's views have evolved," the editorial states.

Stand-your-ground laws allow Americans to use deadly force to defend themselves. Obama questioned the worth of these laws in his comments Friday in light of the acquittal of George Zimmerman for murder in the Trayvon Martin killing.

"I think it would be useful for us to examine some state and local laws to see if they are designed in such a way that they may encourage the kinds of altercations and confrontations and tragedies that we saw in the Florida case, rather than diffuse potential altercations," Obama said.

The president said, "We're sending a message as a society in our communities that someone who is armed potentially has the right to use those firearms, even if there's a way for them to exit from a situation. Is that really going to be contributing to the kind of peace and security and order that we'd like to see?"

But in 2004, Obama co-sponsored a bill in the Illinois Senate that expanded the state's 1961 stand-your-ground law to include a shield from civil liability for people who utilize deadly force to defend themselves or their property, the conservative blog Illinois Review reported Sunday.

"No statute is sacrosanct, and there's nothing wrong with the president's idea of taking a critical look at stand your ground," The Journal editorial states.

"U.S. Senator Dick Durbin of Illinois, a member of the Judiciary Committee, says he'll hold a subcommittee hearing on the topic this fall. Maybe he should call his former junior colleague as a witness and ask him to explain what message he was seeking to send in 2004," the Journal says.

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