Storekeepers shoot, kill robbers

CNN brings us proof that sometimes the only way to stop robbers is to shoot them:

When two men walked into a popular country store outside Atlanta, announced a holdup and fired a shot, owners Bobby and Gloria Doster never hesitated. The pair pulled out their own pistols and opened fire.
The armed suspect and his partner were killed. The Dosters won’t be charged, according to local officials, because they were acting in self-defense.
“I just started shooting,” said Gloria Doster, 56. “I was trying to blow his brains out is what I was trying to do.”

Before my liberal readers get bent out of shape over private citizens “acting like vigilantes” instead of waiting for police to arrive, read another excerpt from the story:

She said she tried to open the register, but one of the men told her she wasn’t moving fast enough and tried to shoot her husband. He missed — and his gun jammed.
At that point, Bobby Doster pulled out a .380-caliber handgun and shot one of the suspects. Gloria Doster then went for a 9 mm pistol she keeps near the register.
“All hell broke loose,” she said. “I was trying to shoot and dial 911 at the same time.”
Both suspects took cover behind the store’s meat counter as the Dosters opened fire. Gloria Doster said she doesn’t know how many bullets were fired, or how many times the suspects were hit.
Police arrived about five minutes after receiving Gloria Doster’s call; the suspects died a short time later at a hospital.
[emphasis added]

If the Dosters had waited for the police to arrive, the Dosters would be dead today. Their exercise of their right to keep and bear arms saved their lives. When you disarm the populace, gun crime soars.

Pope objects to Groningen Protocol

Wes Roth just e-mailed me to let me know that Pope John Paul II made an appeal to end the Groningen Protocol:

The Pope has urged doctors and authorities in the Netherlands to think again about their increasingly far-reaching decisions on euthanasia.
He issued his appeal as it emerged that a group of senior Dutch doctors had formally reported themselves for killing 22 terminally ill newborn babies. Their admissions were intended to force the authorities to agree to regulate the practice.
Pope John Paul II said on Saturday: “I urge the authorities and medical personnel and all those who exercise an educative role to weigh the gravity of these questions.”

The Pope expressed his objections while receiving the new Dutch ambassador to the Vatican, Monique Frank.
He said: “For several years Dutch society, marked by the phenomenon of secularisation, has set in motion a legislative policy concerning the beginning and the end of human life.
“The Holy See has not failed to lay out its clear position and to invite Catholics in the Netherlands always to bear witness to the most absolute respect of the human person, from conception to natural death.”

I’m glad he’s speaking out. But for all the effect he’ll have on today’s Dutch, the Pope may as well shout into the wind.
I’ve commented on the Groningen Protocol before (here, here, and here). I’ll be gone most of tonight so I’ll be blogless, but my initial observation is straightforward: what more do we expect from a radically secular society? A callous disregard for human life flows predictably from a worldview that denies the existence of objective moral standards, much less any obligation to obey them.
Do the Dutch see the well-worn path they’ve started on? They don’t … and this road bends ever downwards. It’s doubly disappointing to see this banal form of evil sprouting in a place that once was a center of Calvinist thought and reformation. For once, the often over-used Nazi comparison applies.
We in America would be wise not to keep following the Dutch.

Rafael Peralta: a good Marine

By all rights, we should know Rafael Peralta’s name. The man died a bona fide hero during the Battle of Fallujah. Here’s an excerpt from Rich Lowry’s column on the sergeant:

Sgt. Peralta, 25, was a Mexican American. He joined the Marines the day after he got his green card and earned his citizenship while in uniform. He was fiercely loyal to the ethos of the Corps. While in Kuwait, waiting to go into Iraq, he had his camouflage uniform sent out to be pressed. He constantly looked for opportunities to help his Marine brothers, which is why he ended up where he was on Nov. 15. A week into the battle for Fallujah, the Marines were still doing the deadly work of clearing the city, house by house. As a platoon scout, Peralta didn’t have to go out with the assault team that day. He volunteered to go.
Eagle, globe and anchorAccording to Kaemmerer, the Marines entered a house and kicked in the doors of two rooms that proved empty. But there was another closed door to an adjoining room. It was unlocked, and Peralta, in the lead, opened it. He was immediately hit with AK-47 fire in his face and upper torso by three insurgents. He fell out of the way into one of the cleared rooms to give his fellow Marines a clear shot at the enemy. During the firefight, a yellow fragmentation grenade flew out of the room, landing near Peralta and several fellow Marines. The uninjured Marines tried to scatter out of the way, two of them trying to escape the room, but were blocked by a locked door. At that point, barely alive, Peralta grabbed the grenade and cradled it to his body.
His body took most of the blast. One Marine was seriously injured, but the rest sustained only minor shrapnel wounds. Cpl. Brannon Dyer told a reporter from the Army Times, “He saved half my fire team.”

Semper Fi, Sergeant Peralta. You were a good Marine.

Hugh Hewitt on the Groningen Protocol

In his newest column for The Weekly Standard, Hugh Hewitt looks at the Groningen Protocol for non-voluntary euthanasia of children in the Netherlands. He wonders if the 21st Century will be even bloodier than the 20th:

This is either a low point, or a point of no return. The establishment of “independent committees” to dispatch non-consenting humans is nothing but a death penalty committee for innocents. Once begun, it is impossible–simply impossible–to limit the concept with any bright line. Abortion, of course, has always been limited by the physical act of birth, and once out of the womb, only the most extreme “reproductive rights” advocates have argued that the baby’s natural right to live can be compromised by the mother. But now the Netherlands has gone farther–much, much farther. If the “severely retarded” may be killed upon appropriate motion, second, debate, and majority vote, why not the moderately retarded? Why not the mildly retarded? Why not, in fact, anyone the “independent committee” deems as usefully dispatched.
Incredibly, the nation’s elite media has turned a collective blind eye to this story, though the Los Angeles Times did, on the day following the Drudge headline, find time to put on the paper’s front page, above the fold, the story that Salmon and Steelhead May Lose Protection, but not a column inch of ink for a radical leap past Kevorkian land into the regions of Mengele.

Lest anyone bring up Godwin’s Law, kindly remember that this is actually how the Nazis desensitized German culture in preparation for the Final Solution.
Since The Weekly Standard is read by the heavy hitters in the White House, you can bet this will show up on President Bush’s radar. Watch for references to the Groningen Protocol in upcoming presidential speeches on the partial birth abortion ban, and maybe even in speeches on judicial nominations in general.

The Groningen Protocol

I heard something frightening on Hugh Hewitt’s show yesterday. Low-key news coverage reveals that systematic euthanasia of children has begun in the Netherlands:

A hospital in the Netherlands – the first nation to permit euthanasia – recently proposed guidelines for mercy killings of terminally ill newborns, and then made a startling revelation: It has already begun carrying out such procedures, which include administering a lethal dose of sedatives.

The Groningen Protocol, as the hospital’s guidelines have come to be known, would create a legal framework for permitting doctors to actively end the life of newborns deemed to be in similar pain from incurable disease or extreme deformities.
The guideline says euthanasia is acceptable when the child’s medical team and independent doctors agree the pain cannot be eased and there is no prospect for improvement, and when parents think it’s best.

I recoiled from this news as soon as I heard it, but some of you reading this are thinking “what’s the big deal?” Let me illustrate the big deal with a hypothetical situation.

Stupid dies as stupid does

Two young teenagers decide to play “rocket launcher.” They rig up a tube and a gasoline-filled bottle to simulate a weapon. Light the fuse, run away, whee, look at the flash, come back again. Dumb enough if you’re two kids in an Iowa trailer park risking severe burns, right?
The consequences are stiffer if you’re in the Gaza Strip and there are armed Israeli drones patrolling overhead.
Hat tip: The Wandering Mind

Italian Journalist killed by jihadis?

AP reports that kidnapped Italian journalist Enzo Baldoni has been murdered by his captors, who apparently mistook Silvio Berlusconi for Jose Zapatero.

An Arab television station said Friday it received a video showing the killing of Italian journalist Enzo Baldoni, who was kidnapped by militants who threatened to execute him if Italy did not withdraw troops from Iraq.
The video received by Al-Jazeera appeared to show Baldoni’s killing, but the station declined to broadcast the footage out of sensitivity to its viewers, said station spokesman Jihad Ballout.

Italian Premier Silvio Berlusconi condemned the reported killing, but said Italian troops would remain in Iraq.

Am I the only one who thinks Al-Jazeera’s spokesman’s name is appropriate, considering his employer’s record of spreading propaganda masquerading as news?