NAACP discusses “Stand your ground” laws

Stand your ground laws in Alabama

TUSCALOOSA, AL (WBRC) - What comes to mind when you hear “Stand Your Ground” laws?

For some it means a more defined ability to protect themselves - others believe it's a license for recklessness.

Here in Alabama, we see them come up often.

The most recent case involved the death of four year old Taleayah Stafford who was shot in a car with her father in July.

Police said the man who fired the fatal shot was shooting at a man who opened fire on him first.

Monday night, the NAACP in Tuscaloosa County held a form on the law and on others laws governing open and concealed carry of weapons. It was a packed house at Beulah Baptist Church. A lot of people with a lot of good questions.

“This is a topic that needs to be discussed,” said NAACP Tuscaloosa chapter president Jerry Carter. “It’s kind of the big pink elephant in the room. Everyone wants to act like it’s not there. But it’s there. And we need to talk about.”

Carter said he’s strongly against the law.

“With stand your ground it just seems like you can think that someone is going to do something to you, and that’s just, you’re talking about a life. That’s not enough,” he said.

Board member of Bama Carry Paul Arnold said he’s looking forward to clarifying rights people might not be aware they have.

“I believe anywhere you go that you have the right to defend yourself. Me being a husband, a father, a grandfather, I’m making it home tonight,” said Arnold.

Law makers and law enforcement also cleared up what you can and cannot do.

State Senator Bobby Singleton said, “If somebody just walks up and slaps you, you don’t have the right to go into your pocket, and just turn around with your gun, and shoot him in the head, and kill him. I don’t think we could use that as a defense at that time.”

Carter said while there haven’t been any stand your ground cases that have gotten national attention in Alabama lately, he said we can’t sit around and wait for it to happen here.

He said he was grateful so many people came out to get educated.

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