September 12, 2014
I have no problem with the idea that he was foolish enough to think his girlfriend was an intruder. What bothers me is the idea that he and others seem to hold that he acted on that belief reasonably.
Many recent highly publicized shootings suggest that we have lost the concept of excessive force. Shooters defend themselves by saying and courts sometimes acquit them based on their saying that they felt threatened by their victims. Trials seem to turn on whether they are telling the truth about perceiving the threats. Rarely–based on the media reports of the trials–does anyone ask whether the threat was enough to warrant the killing.
The verdict lets me continue to hope that the judge will say what I’ve been hoping the judge would say: “Mr. Pistorius, this court accepts your claim that you killed your girlfriend because she might have been an intruder who might have had a weapon with which she might have intended to threaten you. That’s why we’re throwing the book at you.”