I’ve heard and read a lot from people asking how crazy can the North Dakota Legislature get during this session. Well, it appears some newly elected members are taking that as a challenge. Late last night I received a copy of Senate Bill 2315, “relating to the use of deadly force.” People are already beginning to call it the “justifiable homicide” bill.
If passed, the law would justify killing someone to prevent a burglary, arson, or trespass. That’s not all. The law would also allow you to prevent the individual from fleeing the scene by killing them. This bill is a direct reversal from current law in which you are encouraged to get the person to flee and avoid using deadly force. In fact, SB 2315 removes the language, “The use of deadly force is not justified if it can be avoided…”
The bill is introduced by newly elected Senator David Clemens. Newly elected Senator Shawn Veeda, Senator Oley “emotional marshmallow” Larsen, and newly elected Representative Sebastian “Have more babies” Ertelt co-sponsored the bill. So who is David Clemens? Well for starters he got more votes than I did in District 16. It is interesting to note the campaign he ran, however. Clemens literally handed out business cards and brochures declaring he was “pro-life.” During our one and only debate, he insisted he would go to Bismarck and promote policies that “protect life at all stages.” File that political stance under #alternativefacts. Or perhaps #hypocrite is more appropriate?
When we’ve looked at alternatives to incarceration, we were looking at getting people out of prison who may be better helped in treatment, not getting away with murder. This seems to have escaped the sponsors of this bill.
I understand and support the right to protect your property. I believe in reasonable means to do so just as our current law states. This is another crazy law, brought to you by fringe legislators likely introduced as another knee-jerk response to the ongoing protests near Standing Rock. This one certainly crosses the line.