Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) really wants citizens to be able to shoot people. The governor is reportedly proposing “anti-mob” legislation that would expand Florida’s Stand Your Ground law, allowing armed people to protect property by shooting looters, rioters or anyone else displaying nefarious intentions against businesses and other properties. What could go wrong, right?
According to the Miami Herald, DeSantis pledged in September to crack down on “violent and disorderly assemblies” pointing to the wave of protests that happened around the country amid the death of George Floyd—some of which turned violent although most did not. Apparently, DeSantis’ idea of making good on his promise is giving vigilantes more power in the state where George Zimmerman killed Trayvon Martin.
I’m not the only one who thinks this is the shittiest of shitty ideas.
Denise Georges, a former Miami-Dade County prosecutor who handled Stand Your Ground cases, told the Herald that DeSantis’ proposal only “allows for vigilantes to justify their actions.”
“It also allows for death to be the punishment for property crimes,” Georges continued. “And that is cruel and unusual punishment. We can not live in a lawless society where taking a life is done so casually and recklessly.”
According to Newsweek, Aubrey Webb, another former Miami-Dade prosecutor, expressed similar sentiments to that of Georges.
“It dangerously gives armed private citizens power to kill as they subjectively determine what constitutes ‘criminal mischief’ that interferes with a business,” he said. “Someone graffiti-ing ‘Black Lives Matter’ on a wall? Urinating behind a dumpster? Blocking an entrance?”
The Herald reports that besides giving trigger-happy citizens the right to shoot anyone who looks at a business sideways, DeSantis’ proposal would expand “forcible felonies” to include looting, rioting or anything else that constitutes “criminal mischief” that could result in the “interruption or impairment” of a business.
So yeah, if there were any piece of legislation I would pray gets struck down on behalf of Floridians (especially Black ones), it’s this shit here that is just extrajudicial execution by some yokel who ain’t even a cop waiting to happen.