Bloomberg: We Need to Get Rid of "Shoot First" Laws

Leah Barkoukis

7/16/2013 12:23:00 PM - Leah Barkoukis

When all else fails, blame Florida’s gun laws for the outcome of the George Zimmerman trial. That’s been the go-to strategy for a number of journalists and pundits in the wake of Zimmerman’s acquittal, as an NRO article details, but one more anti-gun activist is jumping on that bandwagon: Michael Bloomberg. Surprise, surprise:

“Sadly, all the facts in this tragic case will probably never be known,” Bloomberg said in a statement.

“But one fact has long been crystal clear: ‘shoot-first’ laws like those in Florida can inspire dangerous vigilantism and protect those who act recklessly with guns. Such laws – drafted by gun lobby extremists in Washington – encourage deadly confrontations by enabling people to shoot first and argue ‘justifiable homicide’ later.”

He added, “Last year, I joined a broad coalition of civic leaders to shine a light on the impact of ‘shoot-first’ laws and work to eliminate them, in Florida and wherever they have been passed. We will continue that work – and the tragic death of Trayvon Martin, an unarmed child attempting to walk home from the store, will continue to drive our efforts.”

The only problem? Bloomberg was referring to Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” laws, even though the case “wasn’t decided on a stand your ground basis,” according to University of Florida law professor Joseph Little. Zimmerman’s defense presented a conventional self-defense strategy but it seems Bloomberg wants to get rid of SYG laws nonetheless.