19A035 Thy Brother's Keeper? by Jim Davies, 8/27/2019    


There's another aspect to the El Paso murders: why did nobody shoot back?

As so very often, the Mainstream Media reported some of the facts for a day or two, then switched to some other subject. So I'm still not certain whether there were any gun-carrying people in the Walmart store, who might possibly have taken down the killer and saved some of the lives he stole. But I'm assuming that there were - Texas being a kind-of, maybe, open-carry state.

So why didn't these armed individuals shoot Crusius dead? - why did the victims have to await the arrival of the government police? It's a fair question.

It's also a rather interesting one, for it takes us to the center of rational ethics, taught in the fourth segment of The On Line Freedom Academy.

Rational ethics begin with the axiom that each of us is a self-owner. Therefore, our own lives are our primary possession; the preservation and advancement of that life is the main purpose of your existence, and mine. Our purpose is not primarily to help anyone else, but to help ourselves, respectively. A prime aspect of that is self-defense; if the life is extinguished, nothing else counts.

Helping someone else in danger may well be part of enhancing the quality and enjoyment of our own lives, certainly; it can bring increased self respect, and an enhanced reputation. But that is secondary, not primary. It may well become very close to primary importance if the "someone else" is close - a loved family member, a spouse. In an instant, a husband may well reckon that his life would be so much less worth living if his wife lost hers that he will put his own at serious risk so as to save hers.

That will be his calculation, be it done ever so quickly. But if the endangered life is a stranger's, his inclination to put his own at heavy risk so as to save him or her will, quite rightly, be smaller.

This conflicts with the Christian ethical standard, ie "Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends" (John 15:13) Logically, that would leave the world emptied of good guys and full of bad ones.

That was the situation in the El Paso Walmart. There was no moral obligation on anyone to intervene at serious risk to his own life. Anyone carrying a firearm - a handgun - did so to protect himself first and foremost, not someone else.

I don't know (the media have not told me) whether anyone with a handgun was at all close to Patrick Crosius, armed with a powerful semi-auto weapon. Suppose one was. He would clearly be outgunned; in order to have any chance at all of taking down the murderer, he'd have to get close, and if he approached from Crosius' front he'd be dead before getting within range. To try that would be suicidal; he'd be violating his principle of rational ethics.

His only chance of success would have been to approach from Crosius' rear, and although we have all been deprived of useful facts by those in the business of providing them, it would not be surprising if nobody happened to be in that kind of proximity. If the killer kept his back to a wall, it would not be possible; then, the only way to shoot him would be from a longer range with a bigger gun, which regular Walmart customers would probably not be carrying. And as it was, it seems (though again, we've not been told) that he surrendered as soon as the cops appeared, so there was no firefight.

As suggested a couple of weeks ago in A Murderer's Mind, in the coming ZGS the nasty habit of killing people will rapidly fade away for want of motive; but just in case such a situation should arise, it will be wise to carry a firearm - for the protection of oneself and one's family. Not necessarily for that of anyone else. Nothing will stop anyone being armed; a decision to go unarmed will place no obligation on anyone else.



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