A gun is a tool of personal self-defense without equal (and a great equalizer). Earlier this week, a 62-year-old California man was reported to have died after being attacked with his own baseball bat while trying to defend his wife. From CBS San Francisco:
Sandy Harlow, 61, was housesitting for a friend in Orangevale. When she came to feed the dogs, she says a former resident of the home was in the garage and wouldn't leave.
She dialed 911, but the cops didn't show up right away.
"I called my husband and I said, 'James, please come. Please come I'm so frightened,'" Sandy said.
James Harlow, 62, did come, with a baseball bat. That's when Sacramento Sheriff's Deputies say Brandon Biagioni attacked the husband who was twice his age with his own bat.
Jan Cooper, of Anaheim, fired one shot from her .357-magnum Smith & Wesson revolver around 12:30 a.m. Sunday as a man attempted to break into her home. During a 911 call of the incident, Cooper can be heard begging with the dispatcher to send deputies and warns that she has a gun at the ready as her Rottweiler barks furiously in the background.
Minutes later, a breathless Cooper says the man has come to the back porch and is trying to get in the house through a sliding door. Through the vertical blinds, Cooper saw his silhouette just inches away through the glass as he began to slide open the door.
"I'm firing!" Cooper shouts to the dispatcher as a loud band goes off…
The stunned intruder apologized to Cooper after she fired, she recalled, telling her, "I'm sorry, ma'am. I'm leaving. Please don't shoot."
The Supreme Court ruled in 2005 that police don't have a constitutional duty to defend anyone in particular. Americans do, though, theoretically have a constitutional right to self-defense via the Second Amendment, making attempts to curtail it in the wake of sensational violence particularly disturbing.