Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Is it a trap? Or defense?

A few weeks ago, it was all the rage among some libertarians to yap about throat-punching Nazis for their vile beliefs, or tossing commies out of helicopters because... well, because they are commies.

Principled people pointed out that this behavior would violate the Zero Aggression Principle. Yes, it might be satisfying- I won't deny that- but still wrong, unless the person in question were violating person or property, or making a credible threat to do so.

However, that placed another scenario in my head.

Say you are out in public, in a crowd, and someone started screaming "Allahu Akbar!" Is it right to shoot that individual in that situation? Probably. I would say he is announcing his intention to harm the innocent, and by doing so has become a credible threat. Shooting him would be defensive even if he hasn't yet triggered his suicide bomb, shot, or beheaded anyone. The ZAP isn't about sacrificing the innocent to thugs.

It's possible I am wrong. For example, what if it were some mentally lacking person hoping to cause a scene by screaming "Admiral Ackbar!" in a crowd? Shooting him might be an ethical mistake (but would probably still improve the gene pool).


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