14 comments on “Tale of Two Vigilantes

  1. For the simple fact that these two incidents/cases are very dissimilar, the whole race-bias argument fails. There’s just too many differences for anybody to say that these cases are logically comparative. Now, if you had presented nearly identical cases with each incident/case involving members of a different race than the others, & reported that each ended up w/ a different verdict, then I’d be standing @ your side w/ pitch-fork in hand.

    -n

  2. Simmilar incidents? Really? Sure, the variance in events makes this an issue of “comparing apples to oranges”. But at the end of the day, both apples and oranges are STILL fruit.

    In this case, a white guy kills two men who pose NO THREAT to him or the life of anybody else. The black man is clearly defending his family. I hope to God that you’re not implying that the verdicts are justified; and that Horn’s decision to protect property (someone else’s property at that) is more forgivable than protecting lives.

    Now, as it relates to the the role that race may/may not have played: I’ll concede that these aren’t neccesarily the poster cases for racial bias. Though, when I heard that Horn’s case involved people of color who were also illegal and I found out about his status as a Texan, I knew that would all come together to impact the case. In fact, I remember when I first heard about this story, I predicted THEN that Horn would walk. I’m no clairvoyant. But I’m also not blind to the reality of race.

  3. Nic, even if we concede to the point that the cases are different, I submit to you that Horn’s case is actually WORSE than White’s case and was far more deserving of punishment. Horn shot those men in the back as they RAN AWAY. If they were shot from the front as they approached him, you could make the argument that maybe…just maybe…the killings were justified as self defense or something. But they were trying to get away from him. Oppositely, White killed a person who was coming at him. So you’re absolutely right: there is a HUGE difference between the two cases. The problem is that the more punishable of the two cases went UNPUNISHED.

  4. Regardless to how you spin this, the men Horn killed were all around criminals illegal citizens. They violated a person’s home, stole someone else’s property, and paid the price for it. Horn did the world service by doing what the police couldn’t or what the courts wouldn’t. Even if they got arrested, some criminal lawyer would have got them off on a technicality. It would’ve been a shame to let some scum get away with their crimes.

    Besides all of that, the other case involved a man who was acting off speculation. He thought those kids would do something. But before they had a chance to, one was killed. Getting dirty criminals off the street is different than killing kids who get into school yard fights.

  5. Anonymous, I guess you think that protecting a microwave, some jewelry and a plasma TV is worth taking a human life. God help you if that’s what you’re thinking.

  6. When I listened to the tapes, it sounded more like Joe Horn was mad that these crooks would get away than he was scared for his life of the lives of people around him. His blantant disprect for the law is just as punishable as the people committing the crime. Yet he walks away scott free. The law’s a wonderful thing (if you live in certain states, of course)!

  7. Both men are discapable for unlawfully taking the law in their own hands. But what makes Mr. Horn’s case far worse is that he kills people because of material items AND that he basically tells the dispatcher what he is going to do. I’m not sure how much race is involved necessarily. But I know FOR CERTAIN that a black person would have been arrested, tried, and convicted if he did what Horn did.

  8. Horn was waiting for an excuse to shoot somebody while White was protecting this family. This is a redundant point that has already been said over and over again, but if one person is found guilty, the other person should be. Plain and simple.

  9. @ Andre: I stated “dissimilar”, not similar. Don’t be so jumpy, I’m not a n00b here & know damn well you’re more level headed than that.

    In all your years of schooling I’d be reallllly surprised to find that you haven’t taken a basic communication course that taught the proper aspects of an argument (ie. logic). The shit you presented is akin to comparing O.J. to any of the 234612346 white murderers convicted; it makes NO sense. The argument collapses because the evidence is logically incomparable, & thus flawed. If you think I’m implying anything, reread the above w/ a clear head & you’ll find that I haven’t taken a stance on this as it makes absolutely no sense to do so.

    It’s flawed arguments like this, & another post of yours that I unfortunately lacked the time to get back to, that appears as evidence fishing. You begin w/ a predetermined position on some issue, then attempt to construct evidence to fit that position. Sometimes it works, other times it doesn’t. Don’t get me wrong, w/out looking @ any statistics I’d be willing to bet that blacks are convicted moreso than whites when committing the same crime, but apples+oranges=fruit? Puhlllllease.

    @ KC: They each shot people. Wait, let me add some apostrophes & caps for added effect. THEY EACH SHOT PEOPLE!!! You want to debate angles & who’s more wrong? One person shot some people in the back, another shot a person point-blank in the face. Angles? Does it matter? THEY EACH SHOT PEOPLE.

    @ Ellena: Admittedly, I haven’t heard the “tapes” of some sort of interview that has been mentioned here. However, with that said, even w/ me living in a state that doesn’t specifically permit me to shoot trespassers after-dark (like Texas), I would have ABSOLUTELY NO PROBLEM w/ shooting somebody making an attempt to enter my home in an effort to garner my material possessions. Why? For the simple fact that I am oblivious as to what the intentions are of somebody doing such. I have two three-year-olds wandering about, so while I don’t currently own a firearm, the scenario of sombody-entering-my-house-when-I-don’t-want-then-to makes me kinda want to own one. Crazy coming from the self pro-claimed most liberal person ever, huh?

    -n

  10. @ Mike: “…but if one person is found guilty, the other person should be.”

    Errrrm…one of the few good aspects of our justice system is that each case put forth is treated uniquely as possible. Automatic sentences, & mandatory minimums, much less convictions where the unique circumstances are ignored, are not steps in the direction of justice reform that we should be taking.

    -n

  11. Nic, a couple of things:

    (1) Pardon the “similar” line. In the heat of responding (actually, it’s wasn’t ‘heat’ per se. It was more like…well…I don’t know what it was), I mistakenly left out “Not”. It should’ve read “Not similar?!” This isn’t the first time I’ve made a pretty bad typo. But as you can tell from the rest of my commentary, my argument clearly fell in line with an opposing viewpoint. Trust me, I wasn’t pulling some Fixed Noise type of spin on your words. I simply had a blonde-typo moment. I mean, playas mess up too.

    (2) More to the heart of this discussion: one of the problems with the way these two cases have been presented (especially in the media) is that centrally unifying notions are dismissed in the interest of keeping ‘apples’ separate from ‘oranges’. It’s in that respect that the disparate outcomes from these stories fall on their heads. Two people imposed vigilante justice; two people killed while claiming “protection.” Only one was allowed to walk. If anything is lacking logic here, it’s the reality of those outcomes. Equally as illogical is the fact that some states have senseless laws in place (i.e. The Castle Law) that allow for a man like Horn to escape the responsibilities associated with killing; justified or not. Don’t get me wrong: individually interpretative state rights are not always a bad thing; per the Constitution. But laws like this should NEVER exist; let alone if they exist in one area without having comparable laws existing in another area. If that type of thinking that makes me unreasonable, then that’s a hat I wear without shame.

  12. Nic, since you’re in the habit of urging people to REREAD comments, you might wanna follow your own advice.

    If you got back to my comments, my point in mentioning the angles of the gunshots is significant in that it implies that one victim was approaching the shooter (White) while the other(s) were fleeing from the shooter (Horn). Fleeing suspects don’t pose a bodily threat warranting deadly force. If they were running toward the guns they had off in the distance somewhere, maybe shooting somebody in the back can be cited as self defense. But that clearly wasn’t the case.

  13. Andre,

    But laws like this should NEVER exist; let alone if they exist in one area without having comparable laws existing in another area.

    The obvious solution to this is to allow Texas to secede from the rest of the country. Good riddance I say.

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