Unscripted Joe Biden, as we have all come to realize, is must-watch TV. When the presumptive Democrat Presidential candidate speaks off-the-cuff, his message regularly goes off the rails. We all anticipate Biden will say something odd, confusing, or even incomprehensible during interviews and live appearances, but we are often still shocked by what comes out of his mouth.
Even scripted Biden can be a curious misadventure.
On Monday, June 1, he upped the ante by not just saying something strange, but something potentially dangerous.
While addressing a crowd at the Bethel AME Church in Wilmington, Del., Biden suggested that law enforcement training could include “teaching a cop when there’s an unarmed person, coming at him with a knife or something, to shoot him in the leg instead of the heart.”
First, it’s certainly odd to characterize someone as an “unarmed person” if they are “coming at (you) with a knife.”
Biden is very vocal about his desire to ban most semi-automatic rifles. Perhaps he is unaware that rifles of any kind are used less frequently in homicides than knives or blunt objects.
We have long known that Biden simply does not like guns in the hands of law-abiding citizens, as he appears to not trust them to be responsible or remain law-abiding. But who knew that mistrust also applied to law enforcement? It’s certainly an odd position for someone who has been protected by armed government agents for decades.
And what about that suggestion to abandon over a century of firearms training to, when faced with a deadly threat, “coming at him…to shoot him in the leg…”?
Targeting center mass, is done to best ensure all rounds fired hit their intended target for the safety of all innocent parties involved and to stop the threat.
Sadly, candidate Biden seems to get much of his firearms education from Hollywood, where big-screen heroes regularly shoot with unachievable accuracy. If Clint Eastwood’s Man with No Name character could fire his single action revolver from the hip, while on a horse, with pinpoint precision, surely those with more modern firearms and training could easily match this feat.
Much like Biden’s ideas about biometric firearms, though, life is not going to imitate art when it comes to the defensive use of firearms.
Even if it could, it still would not be advisable. The reality is that any time a gun is fired at another person, a lethal outcome is possible. A leg wound from being shot can be just as fatal as a wound to the body. A gun should therefore never be used in any circumstance other than one that would justify lethal force.
This rule reserves the use of a firearm for the most serious of encounters. Biden’s “leg shot” rule ironically could lead to more uses of firearms under the flawed assumption that the injured subject would eventually recover.
“Shooting at a person is deadly force regardless of what part of their body you aim at,” said Jason Johnson, the president of the Law Enforcement Legal Defense Fund, as reported in the Washington Free Beacon.
He went on to explain, “[Police are] trained to shoot center mass but there is no option to shoot somewhere else and have it not considered deadly force.”
Firearms training has been refined for decades, and when it comes to using lethal force to stop a violent threat, targeting the body is proven to be the best way to ensure striking the intended target, ending a lethal threat, and minimizing the chance of misses that endanger innocent third parties.
But this dangerous suggestion from Biden is nothing new, when it comes to the use of firearms. We could call it Chapter Two in his book of what not to do with a gun if you are concerned for your safety.
Chapter One involved the use of shotguns, and included two bits of advice that would likely land anyone who follows them in jail. First, in February 2013, Biden told women who wish to defend their home and loved ones from intruders to walk outside with a double barreled shotgun, and fire two blasts. He followed that up later in the same month by telling anyone who wants “to keep someone away from (their) house, just fire the shotgun through the door.”
These suggestions are as preposterous, and dangerous, as telling anyone to “shoot [an attacker] in the leg.” Perhaps the best advice when it comes to defensive use of firearms would be to never listen to Joe Biden.
Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the “lobbying” arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Click here to follow NRA-ILA on Facebook.
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