Thursday, September 01, 2005
If this kind of thing doesn't get under control within 24 hours, I think President Bush should declare martial law (i.e., suspend habeas corpus and certain other due process rights) and the authorities at all levels should announce that anyone using, brandishing or even carrying a firearm who is not obviously a peace officer or military person is subject to being summarily shot. The announcement should be made public by helicopters equipped with loudspeakers (and maybe door gunners).
Undoubtedly some innocents would be harmed, but when a few animals like the perpetrator(s) in the linked story can jeopardize the lives of hundreds or thousands, they don't deserve second chances, and probably more innocents will die anyway if the outlaws prevent rescue operations from continuing.
UPDATE: Peggy Noonan agrees. Here's the nut:
As for the tragic piggism that is taking place on the streets of New Orleans, it is not unbelievable but it is unforgivable, and I hope the looters are shot. A hurricane cannot rob a great city of its spirit, but a vicious citizenry can. A bad time with Mother Nature can leave you digging out for a long time, but a bad turn in human behavior frays and tears all the ties that truly bind human being--trust, confidence, mutual regard, belief in the essential goodness of one's fellow citizens.