Many people mistakenly believe one of the roles of government is to protect them from physical harm. However, this is not the case. One only has to look up the concept of “affirmative duty” to understand what the Supreme Court has defined as the role of any government entity in regard to protection of citizenry; both at Local/State and Federal levels. In short it can be encapsulated as:
The burden to defend and or use deadly force, is a right that lies with you personally to act accordingly, and appropriately, should you fear for your life and/or limb. The government does not have any affirmative duty to do this for you.
In South v. Maryland, 59 U.S. (How.) 396, 15 L.Ed.433 (1856) – the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that local law-enforcement had no duty to protect individuals, but only a general duty to enforce the laws. This is a distinction which needs to be clearly understood.
The affirmative duty to protect arises not from the State’s knowledge of the individual’s predicament, or from its expressions of intent to help him, but from the limitations which it has imposed on his freedom to act on his own behalf, through imprisonment, institutionalization, or other similar restraint of personal liberty.
If you are under the care or custody of the ‘state’ then, and only then, do they have a specific duty to protect you from harm. Or, if the ‘state’ has diminished your capacity to protect yourself, then they “may” arguably be in a position of affirmative duty, but only to the extent the state has diminished your capacity to act on your own behalf.
In all other considerations the “state” only has the duty to enforce the law.
If law enforcement has no affirmative duty to protect the citizenry, which they absolutely do not, and the police have argued numerous times in court to prove they are under no responsibility to protect a person from physical harm, then why should the group without affirmative duty be espousing that an individual remove their legal and constitutional right to protect themselves.?
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