(This post is an entry in our spring content contest. If you’d like a chance to win a Beretta APX pistol, click here for details.) 

By Anthony L. DeWitt

Almost immediately after the news broke that a 23-year-old resident shot and killed three armed intruders with an AR-15 killing all three, Twitter erupted in a firestorm of support … for the criminals.
While those of us who love the Second Amendment were posting messages like “good grouping,” on the left the response was that these three poor teenagers, obviously on a prank-ish endeavor, were shot down in cold blood by the same gun that was used in Newtown! Oh the horror!

In the liberal mindset these boys, armed with knives and brass knuckles, were not criminals, they were mere “trespassers.” And the anti-Christian left is always happy to trot out a line from the bible, “forgive us our trespasses,” in order to fuel any kind of vitriol against lawful gun owners using lawful guns to defend their lawful residence against unlawful attackers.

The reaction happened before any facts are known about the actual ages and races of the “victims” here. Sure enough, when we find out they were 16, 17, and 18 years old (and their portly den-mother getaway car driver was 21), the calls for an immediate flaying (with lemon juice applied liberally along the way) of the homeowner were magnified. These poor boys!

Yeah. The poor boys. The poor boys who broke into an occupied dwelling, during the day, with a knife and a pair of brass knuckles. What, is this the new aggressive Jehovah’s Witness? Were they Mormon Elders stopping by to reprise the Cross and the Switchblade (without music, of course)? Perhaps the knife was meant to facilitate trimming fingernails, and the brass knuckles were, in fact, just a new piece of punk-rock jewelry meant to make the wearer “look cool.”

Don Henley’s excellent song “Dirty Laundry” reminds us that the media wants to “get the widow on the set” because “we need dirty laundry.” And, true to form, the local media went right out and interviewed the grandfather. After admitting that the boys shouldn’t have been doing what they were doing (yeah, uh, thanks for that gramps!) he said that the fight between a knife and an AR-15 was not a fair fight.
Excuse me? Did he really just say that?

Yes, he did. Somehow the idea that this was an old-west shootout, or two kids stepping into the ring to duke it out, got transposed into the discussion of an active criminal enterprise. The idea that our homeowner should have dropped his weapon and pulled out a butcher knife and gone man to man with the knife-wielding criminal is mind-bogglingly stupid.

The entire purpose of having a firearm for self protection is to make something into an other-than-fair fight. The idea is that if someone is in your house, they’re not there collecting donations for Breast Cancer Research. If they have a weapon (and a knife is a weapon that, within 21 feet, is equally deadly as any firearm) they are not there to show you a good time.

The idea of a “fair fight” is a myth. There has never been a fair fight, because fairness would require that no one loses. Someone always loses in a fight. The idea that one should not make use of every advantage one has in a fight is like saying a pro boxer should tie one hand behind his back if attacked. Sure he has an advantage: that’s the whole point!

In fact, the good folks in the Oklahoma legislature pretty much thought this whole thing out for the public when it passed Ok. Stat. 1289.25 which provides in part:

A. The Legislature hereby recognizes that the citizens of the State of Oklahoma have a right to expect absolute safety within their own homes or places of business.

B. A person or an owner, manager or employee of a business is presumed to have held a reasonable fear of imminent peril of death or great bodily harm to himself or herself or another when using defensive force that is intended or likely to cause death or great bodily harm to another if:

1. The person against whom the defensive force was used was in the process of unlawfully and forcefully entering, or had unlawfully and forcibly entered, a dwelling, residence, occupied vehicle, or a place of business, or if that person had removed or was attempting to remove another against the will of that person from the dwelling, residence, occupied vehicle, or place of business; and

2. The person who uses defensive force knew or had reason to believe that an unlawful and forcible entry or unlawful and forcible act was occurring or had occurred.

Yep, that’s right, if you break into someone’s house, and you don’t belong there, then you place the homeowner in immediate peril and you can be shot. The law permits it and rules it justifiable use of force.

Of course, there will be those who say things like “this amounts to a shoot-on-sight order from the legislature. Well, take it up with the legislature. It understood that in a state as big as Oklahoma, where there might not be a sheriff coming for 30 or 40 minutes, sometimes the guy in the house is 911 himself.

He has to depend on himself, not on help from an LEO down the road. Moreover, it seems like a reasonable policy choice precisely because police officers rarely stop crimes, they investigate and arrest those who have committed them. That’s because they can’t be in 20 different places at once.

I will not criticize the grandfather too much. He’s hurting. He’s lost a family member. I understand the pain of that. It matters not whether he was engaged in a crime or not, the pain of losing a family member is real and hot, and you want to lash out at whatever it was that produced the result. I understand that anger. But more importantly, I understand that pain.

But what I do criticize is the way that this narrative about a “fair fight” works its way into the media narrative on the shooting as if to suggest that whenever someone breaks into your home we should arm them so you can have a shootout with them. The whole purpose of arming yourself is to ensure there is never a fair fight. I have a GLOCK 19 on my hip during the day, and a Kimber .45 on the nightstand at night.

The instant that anyone breaches my perimeter three things happen. First, my dogs start backing, second, my alarm goes off, and third, I find anyone who doesn’t belong in my house and offer them the chance to live another day while I call 911. While I hope they take me up on the offer, I am more than happy to discharge my duty to keep my family safe if they fail to.

Getting shot shouldn’t be a life choice; neither should burglary.

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60 Responses to The Myth of the Fair Fight – Content Contest

    • ^ That. Right there.

      If you have illegally entered my home, it is assumed you are there for evil purposes. Stop moving, get down.

      If you happen to break into my unoccupied rental property to take a shower…I’ll call the PD for that. Just don’t charge at me nekkid from the shower. That’s a different story. 😉

  1. If you intentionally placed yourself between a mama grizzly and her cubs would people say that the bear didn’t have a right to separate your head from your body because it wasn’t a fair fight, what with her being 6 times your size? No, they’d say you died from terminal stupidity. Don’t start fights that place you at an unfair advantage.

  2. I don’t believe in fair fights. I don’t want to fight. I don’t seek fights. If someone forces me to fight it will not be fair. I will not use just enough force to win. I will use as much force as I have at my disposal, preferably overwhelming force, to win with as little danger to myself as possible. If you insist on fighting with me one of us will be severely injured or dead. Your choice.

    So, if you break into my house do not expect to come away unscathed. You’ll be lucky if you survive.

  3. Nice piece and timely. Most of it was well done. The 21 foot comment is not 100% accurate but so commonly wrongly used.

  4. Very nice effort! Except Grampa should STFU. Your miscreant grandson got a thugs reward-and Ma Barker getaway gal blabbed they also engaged in breakins and carjacking…

    • Yep, dont feel bad for grandpa in the least. I know pleanty of families whose black sheep went out and did something terminally stupid, who then went out and apologised to the victims for their progeny’s idiocy. Those are the families i feel sympathy for, because they have been on the receiving end of Little Mr. Idiot’s stupidity for years and know what its like to be his victim….. those are also the families that don’t get news coverage.

  5. Some family member with common sense should have gotten between grandpa and a the camera. He’s a retired firefighter from Oklahoma, judging by his attire in the interview. He has just made himself a pariah in his community. I understand his anguish and his wanting to lash out, but he looked stupid.

    I’ve seen some of the pictures of his grandson, posturing with his backwards hat while throwing faux gang signs. I’m quite certain the writing was on the wall with this kid.

    If you have a child, the BEST thing you can do is squash any interest they may have in hip-hop culture. It’s not what it used to be. The days of the B-boy are gone. There’s no positivity in that world. It’s not about break dancing and having a good time. It’s about slinging rocks, sipping syrup, and glorifying criminal behaviour. You’re much better off with your kid being a bro-country redneck, a Goth, a punk, or even a hipster. Those behaviours will not lead them to a life of crime. Being into rap culture today assuredly will.

    And I am old enough that I was a middle school student during the genesis of hip-hop.

    • {The thug’s grandparent}

      “He has just made himself a pariah in his community.”

      Huh? 150 members of that ‘community’ showed up to grieve the perpetrators of a felony act. That’s a strong clue as to the makeup of that area.

      Were I that family, I’d be making plans *now* to move out of that ‘hood…

      • Most of the people who showed up at the memorial were teen age high school kids. There was a social media call and they came. A group of clueless teens responding to a feel good call. The town/school is not troubled location.

        Yes, there are some hoodlums around but a small number. The real problem is parents not paying attention to who their kids are hanging around with. A kid with no guidance will find someone to guide him, right or wrong.

    • I’m not sure how hip-hop culture has much to do with this killing, but I suppose the criminals’ manner of dress and behavior could be attributable to it.

      That said, as a fan of hip hop in its heydays, and having grown up with that music, I find what’s being passed off as “hip hop” these days is barely intelligible. The lyrics are repetitive, seemingly about nothing and hardly clever at all, and auto-tuned to hell. The beats and the groove are crap (nothing like the sampling of old R&B/funk/soul songs as before). Trying to listen to that crap for even a minute starts turning my brain to mush; no wonder the whole hip-hop culture is going down the drain. It’s a shame.

  6. Perhaps the lefties will start advocating that criminals carry two identical weapons with them, that way when the decided to commit a crime, they can hand one to the victim so that the fight can be fair.

  7. All good. The craziness about a fair fight has kept the story alive. Maybe the next group of idiots will now think twice before breaking into someone else’s house. And maybe another homeowner will take “prudent precautions” (read: “arm up, train up, and load up”).

  8. Good article! I think it was GEN Patton who said ‘if you’re ever in a fair fight, your tactics suck.’ As a Tanker, there is no such thing as overkill. This guy applied lawful, lethal force judiciously and accurately against a legitimate threat of overwhelming (3:1 against) lethal force (3 hostiles armed with knife and brass knuckles) in a clear-cut case of self defense. What did Grandpa think would happen? This ain’t Germany where you must match force for force! This is the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave. If you’re stupid enough to start a fight, then you’re stupid enough to deal with the aftermath.

  9. Amen.

    Our culture has been tainted with the idea of a fair fight.

    These three felons ended up here by making bad decisions.

    My guess is those bad decisions started long before this final incident.

  10. By definition a fight is not fair if the attacker chooses the time, place, and victim of a fight. Since the attacker has instigated an unfair fight, why is the victim obligated to “fight fair”?

  11. What kills me is that no one asked the questions: “What should he have done to make it more fair? Have the boys wait until 2 of his friends can show up with their own knives and knuckles? Ask them politely to wait while he puts the gun away and gets a kitchen knife instead and then fight 3 on 1? Have his friends grab knives and burglar each of their homes later?” That last one is by definition the MOST fair of them all.

    His statement to the police was that he shot them “after an exchange of words”. That tells me these poor innocent kids didn’t leave right away. So liberal media, answer the big question: If a group of people break into my home, at first glance it seems they’re sporting non gun weapons and they refuse to leave… what actions should I take to make it a fair fight?

    Give us an answer so we can debate an actual plan with fact. Rather than trying to guilt us about the deaths of 3 armed burglars who refused to leave the home they broke into.

  12. “Twitter erupted in a firestorm of support … for the criminals.”

    Thank you for yet another reason to stay the hell away from social media. It has proven to be the most useless application of technology so far in this century.

  13. When will people stop repeating the lie about the weapon Lanza used? He didn’t use the rifle in the massacre.

  14. The masculine bravado of youth is what got these kids killed. They had no need for masks, guns or brass knuckles to burglarize and empty house. Their weaponry was most likely just to show off and impress each other. In their escalating display of sophomoric stupidity, they “had an exchange of words” with their victim instead of immediately vacating the premises. They needlessly crossed the threshold from burglary to attempted robbery, and paid dearly for their poor choices.

  15. The thing about “Forgive us our trespasses” is that the trespassers is supposed to stop doing wrong and ask for forgiveness. I don’t recall anything in the story about the three intruders doing anything of the sort.

  16. Hell, I’ll kill a man in a fair fight… or if I think he’s gonna start a fair fight.

    ..Jayne

    Best quote of the whole movie in my opinion.

  17. Well written. Good job.

    Part of me thinks that this is just anti “weapons of war(!!!)” hysteria but another part of me sees something slightly more sinister here and that is something I’ve seen bits and pieces of before: an argument about disparity of force as a focus of an anti-gun agenda.

    We kind of saw this with Trevon Martin where some fringe folks claimed that Mr. Zimmerman wasn’t justified in shooting someone who had “merely” gained a full mount position and was raining punches on him. Granted, once it was spelled out for them just how dangerous a mount position can be for the person who’s been mounted if they don’t know how to deal with it, the conversation rapidly turned to Skittles, iced tea and racism. However, there’s a monster here that, like Nessy, occasionally pops it’s head above water and that monster is the concept, which seems to be widely held in anti-gun precincts that there is never a justified use of a gun against another person, even if that person would seem to a rational observer to be in the process of committing a murder because the gun isn’t “fair”.

    While I don’t legislatures weighing the topic to be swayed by such nonsense, I do expect that tort lawyers will try to use such an argument to their full advantage when it turns out the homeowner/resident is wealthy, has wealthy family members or has good insurance.

  18. In every single one of these articles there has to be a dig at everyone left of center doesn’t there? “Anti-Christian Left.” Since when? The majority of those on the left in this country, including nearly every Democratic politician, are also Christians.

    Your argument would have been a lot more convincing to more people outside the echo chamber if you stuck to the relevant details. Same goes for just about everything else posted here. If we are only trying to justify our positions to ourselves, then we can keep attacking anyone and everyone who is not a gun toting, card carrying conservative.

    I in the meantime will continue to do my best to rationally press the case for our rights to anyone, regardless of their political or religious beliefs and avoid attacking people instead of ideas. I suppose maybe there are some exceptions for some extreme people. I don’t plan to sit and chat with ISIS or the KKK anytime soon, but the point I keep pressing from time to time here is that continually attacking all Democrats, non-Christians, etc. severally limits the spread of our messages and certainly feeds into the anti-gun narrative of gun owners as ignorant bigots. While some of us no doubt are, the vast majority of gun owners I know are just rational people.

    • Sorry that you don’t realize that we are in the cold stage of Civil War 2. We all hope it won’t have to go hot, but if it does, some of us will be ready.

  19. Fair would have been for the three thugs not to have broken in and to have left the resident to continue his nap in peace. The break in and everything that transpired afterward and has yet to transpire are grossly unfair to the resident.

  20. The greatest tragedy in all this, is that he only got the workers and not the queen. It would be a good thing if she hasn’t been bred but that’s probably to much to hope for.

  21. 3 less drug addicted inbreds. The world is a quantifiably better place now that they’re room temperature.

  22. “I will not criticize the grandfather too much. He’s hurting.”?

    Then leave it up to me. The grandfather is a POS, he passed along is obviously intellectually inferior and criminal DNA to his daughter/son and grandson. That entire gene pool needs a 50 gal drum of bleach.

    • You couldn’t be more wrong about offspring. I have 3, all raised by my wonderful wife and me. One is becoming a cop in a major city here, one is becoming an RN, and the other is a meth-addicted criminal. So STFU. Not true. End of story.

      • Actually YOU’RE wrong!

        The grandpappy that mouthed off is a CONVICTED FELON, a VIOLENT CRIMINAL, thus proving MY hypothesis.

        Now pass the bleach

  23. Not surprising that three punks would be eulogized and mourned by a nation with uncountable millions of punks.

  24. From “Of Civil Government” – John Locke (1632-1704):

    8. And thus, in the state of Nature, one man comes by a power over another, but yet no absolute or arbitrary power to use a criminal, when he has got him in his hands, according to the passionate heats or boundless extravagancy of his own will, but only to retribute to him so far as calm reason and conscience dictate, what is proportionate to his transgression, which is so much as may serve for reparation and restraint. For these two are the only reasons why one man may lawfully do harm to another, which is that we call punishment. In transgressing the law of Nature, the offender declares himself to live by another rule than that of reason and common equity, which is that measure God has set to the actions of men for their mutual security, and so he becomes dangerous to mankind; the tie which is to secure them from injury and violence being slighted and broken by him, which being a trespass against the whole species, and the peace and safety of it, provided for by the law of Nature, every man upon this score, by the right he hath to preserve mankind in general, may restrain, or where it is necessary, destroy things noxious to them, and so may bring such evil on any one who hath transgressed that law, as may make him repent the doing of it, and thereby deter him, and, by his example, others from doing the like mischief. And in this case, and upon this ground, every man hath a right to punish the offender, and be executioner of the law of Nature.

  25. I hope this wins the content contest.

    Several things jumped out at me as I read it, they’re re-occurring themes:
    1. You are your own First Responder, whether you recognize and train for it or not.

    2. Your right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness end when you attempt to take those three from me.

    3. The absolute fail of the Progressive Left’s spin on defensive gun use.

    4. The AR15 is *that* effective for home defense (suckit Joe “buy a double barrel shotgun and fire it in the air” Biden).

  26. “Getting shot shouldn’t be a life choice; neither should burglary.” As someone points out in a follow up piece on this news item, it was not (really) burglary, but a home invasion. Multiple attackers with brass knuckles and a knife. Not classic burglary tools. Oklahoma has a “make my day law” which allows for the use of deadly force against uninvited guests in your home. Goes way beyond some states Castle Doctrine including mine. Tragic event in any case that no one involved in will get over soon.

  27. Only fair fight is in a controlled environment with non partisan referees! These amateurs must have been transplanted big city boys out to get their stuff which may or may not belong to them! Organized by a big mama Ho with visions of sugar plumbs dancing in her head, and in their blood!
    Weapon of choice,weapon knowledge, along with the gumption to use said weapon in it’s intended manner saved a life. article does not say if Shooter was a Veteran or not but two DRT with a DRT Runner is not bad shooting! muzzle blast must have been a bitch, young man did not seem flustered in 911 call just matter of fact! I feel bad for the shooter, now he has an unintended reality that’s going to whack him in the face the rest of his life! As for the DRT”s no time for sympathy or compassion as they set out on a course of excitement and monetary gain, taking weapons along for show, hardly! Weapons with them for use and easier intimidation of intended victim!

  28. I think I’ve figured out why there’s no significant media coverage: Two of the “victims” were white trash, and the third is a high yella who doesn’t present the right optics for “black victim of white violence.” That and the overweight white Mexican girl who was the mastermind and left the three kids to die. Not good for the leftist narrative!

  29. Apparently it is being said that the state legislature has passed a law that amounts to a “shoot on sight” law. Well, “Yes,” that is basically true. The law allows a resident to “shoot on sight” any intruder into his home who came in without his permission. The real question is, “What’s wrong with that?” Is there some potential for accidental shootings of say, drunken family members who come in during the early morning hours without announcing themselves? Sure. That’s why we are always exhorted to identify our target before lighting it up. But is that a reason NOT to have a law allowing you to protect your home with deadly force – no, it’s not. In this case, the home invaders were perfectly well aware that they were illegally breaking into someone else’s home, and they certainly did not have good or peaceful intentions (given that they wore masks and carried weapons). They just failed to select an appropriate target for their depredation. That kind of poor target selection process is a recognized hazard in the “home invasion community” and these idiots received the maximum negative consequences for making such a poor selection – oh, well.

  30. The grandfather should have been asked what a “fair fight” would have been.
    Most reasonable people would say a “fair fight” would have agreement on the rules, equal numbers and equal skills. Here we have none of this. The attack was in the middle of the night without warning. The numbers were 4 to 1. No doubt the attackers assumed nobody would be home or assumed nobody would have an armed response. There was nothing “fair” about the situation.
    (And for the SJW sitting in mom’s basement. The female did more then drive. She was the leader that planned this and she was the one that sent them in. That’s 4 to 1 odds. That’s also why she’s charged with murder.”

  31. If I believed in an afterlife, I’d imagine the late Arthur Buford, Trayvon Martin, and Michael Brown saying to the three deceased imbeciles, “See, that’s why you don’t do that.”

    I most certainly blame the parents and grandparents. The odds are overwhelming that the “parent(s)” “raised” the kids to be thugs. The odds are equally high that the grand parents “raised” the “parent” in a similar matter.

    If I had to bet, I’d say those kids were doomed from birth. The victim had no duty to put himself at risk to mitigate that.

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